Uncertainty is plaguing everyone’s world view now with how the past year has unfolded and how that will project forward into the future. One thing is for certain, top operations leaders share similar concerns as they evaluate their business driving into 2021. In this recent Supply Chain Dive opinion poll, executive leaders voted on their top concerns:
Recent posts by Pete Conrad
6 min read
You’ve heard the term labor pool and have an idea of what it is, but now you are likely wondering: what level of commitment is needed, and is it worth it for me and my business?
Operations leaders across the country are wrestling with the issue of balancing their daily execution with finding time to drive operational improvements. The truth is that creating a labor pool is something we’ve seen plenty of clients utilize to solve this problem. The other truth is that creating a labor pool is a bonafide change to the way that most businesses have viewed their labor force, which is understandably a reason to be skeptical.
At Veryable, we operate an on-demand labor platform to solve the need for efficiently responding to changes in customer demand. We understand that this isn’t for everyone, but by the end of this blog you will be better equipped to make that determination for your business.
The big question is: should building a labor pool be an operational improvement priority?
7 min read
When thinking through your operation and how to best organize it to complete the work, you’ve most likely weighed prioritizing labor productivity rates versus prioritizing labor availability. This is actually a critical question, and one with implications on customer service that are not fully appreciated across an operation.
4 min read
US Manufacturing is lagging behind the overall economy in growth, according to the Institute for Supply Management’s Purchasing Managers Index (PMI). The sector is seeing limited growth, however, with a PMI above 60%.
Topics: US Manufacturing
5 min read
In today’s world, Lean is being challenged as never before due to higher customer requirements and the digital revolution of Industry 4.0. The challenge to keep up in the landscape leads to the questions: Are Lean principles in conflict with the digitization that is Industry 4.0? Are Lean principles in conflict with serving your customer in the manner in which they have requested? The short answer is mostly no, and we’ll dig into the alignments and variances below. But, in order to keep up in today’s world, Lean does need to evolve to match today’s quick response, digital environment.
Topics: Digital Manufacturing
4 min read
Have you ever stared ahead at a busy next week and just knew that it will be a challenge with overtime on the rise, and the very real possibility of people taking unscheduled days off? If so, you’re not alone. Solutions to these problems have typically been to allow overtime to rise or risk customer dissatisfaction by pushing out customer promise dates.
6 min read
You’ve just gotten a 10% increase in orders, 1 employee is out on a scheduled vacation, and another two have called off for the day. Now you find your operations team is short and you’re scrambling to make sure you can fulfill orders. What are your options?
Topics: On-Demand Labor
2 min read
The US Department of Commerce's GDP analysis of manufacturing estimates the industry represents ~11% of the economy and has 1.4x multiplier effect for every dollar spent. Those figures are already quite significant; however, this article outlines research from the MAPI showing that the US manufacturing sector’s economic contribution is actually 32% and has a multiplier effect of 3.6x for every dollar created. Suffice to say, US manufacturing creates significant economic contribution to our national economy as a whole, as well as local economies across the country.
2 min read
Resiliency is becoming a buzzword now because of the global stress test that supply chains are facing today due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and highlights the vulnerability of the distributed network of global supply chains. Starting in January, the COVID-19 effects on the global supply chain were starting to reveal themselves as product stopped moving from the Chinese interior to the ports. As the factories started slowing, the linkage to the ports failed as well when Wuhan and surrounding provinces were quarantined. Then shipping companies cancelled sailings causing vessels and empty containers to be out of position across the globe. Even after countries and businesses re-open, the affects of this disruption will be felt for at least a year to reposition people, right-size assets, and determine the new demand profile going forward.
Position to change
2 min read
Even though automation has come a long way, its deployment on the shop floor must be executed within the framework of the entire production process. As The Goal (1) highlighted in 1984, automation is not always the right answer since the installation of those infamous robots resulted in: 1) no increase to sales throughput, 2) no reduction in the workforce, and 3) a steady increase in inventories. This certainly highlights a worst case automation installation.