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3 tips for making big improvements in distribution

Richard Shipperbottom, founder of industry specialists Applied Acumen draws upon vast experience of improving distribution operations over the last twenty years to give us 3 tips for making big improvement. How many will you implement?

 1        Get the basics right!

Logistics network management

Start simple – count your vans!

How many vehicles does your company have? Seriously, it might make you laugh, but it isn’t funny: most of the businesses that run a fleet of more than a couple of dozen vehicles don’t actually know how many they have! It gets worse when there are more than one or two depots, too.

 

There will be vehicles off road (VOR) in for repair, MOT or service, there will be vehicles on hire, vehicles waiting to be returned, vehicles on order, vehicles all over the place. Of course, your fleet or transport manager is supposed to keep track of it all, but chances are the numbers on the sheet will be wrong. This includes all those running a decent TMS tracker system, too.

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Beat Food Inflation

With material price inflation now regularly making headlines, the Supermarkets have staked their intent very clearly: suppliers are largely expected to suck it up.

Richard Shipperbottom, founder of industry specialists Applied Acumen draws upon vast experience of reducing material costs in the food and drink sector over the last twenty years to give us 3 tips for reducing material costs. How many will you implement in 2017? Read more

reduce-absence

Planning Gaps

World class manufacturing factories are a rarity by definition. But there is one thing that all of these operations have in common: a joined up and effective planning function.

Planning is the “brain” of the manufacturing organism. It allocates the resources, sets the priorities, and coordinates each of the constituent parts to ensure they work together efficiently. If a factory has a disjointed planning process, you can be certain it’s not maximizing its full potential somewhere in the process.

Fixing a malfunctioning planning department can seem like a colossal undertaking. But it needn’t be so daunting. Planning is not black magic and no challenge is too great to overcome. Like many large problems, the solution may be lots and lots of simple fixes.

This is why whenever we take a look at planning department, we always carry out our Planning Audit. A simple but thorough RAG (Red, Amber, Green) audit: we overlay a best practice model onto the existing planning function that highlights a department’s strengths and weaknesses.

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