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By Kris Timmermans · January 1, 2016
Agility may not be a new business priority, but it couldn’t be more important in today’s era of digital disruption. The threat comes in all forms—from individual players that force you to remake your entire business to thousands of start-ups that gradually carve up your entire value chain bit by bit. Consequently, agility has again become a priority topic in many boardrooms.
By Mark Pearson · May 1, 2015
In recent years, companies have nodded respectfully toward the concept of supply chain sustainability. Ethical supply chains have been seen as a “nice to have” rather than a “must have.” Now, however, the landscape has changed. Companies without responsible, ethical supply chain practices will begin losing their ability to grow and compete.
By Mark Pearson · March 1, 2015
Today’s digitally empowered customers are just as demanding about after-sales service as they are about the products and services they buy. While customer expectations for after-sales service are growing, surveys consistently find that today’s customers are mostly disappointed and frustrated with the customer service they receive.
By Mark Pearson · February 1, 2015
Great businesses have key similarities. Most have sound business strategies that clearly explain the nature and mission of their products or services, as well as how and to whom those offerings are sold. Leading companies also have particularly strong core competencies that enhance differentiation. And of course, highly successful companies execute: They deliver value quickly, reliably, and profitably.
By Mark Pearson · January 1, 2015
In a recent white paper, Cisco stated that “the Internet of Everything represents $14.4 trillion in ‘value at stake’—the combination of increased revenues and lower costs that is created or will migrate among companies and industries from 2013 to 2022.”
By Mark Pearson · November 1, 2014
According to new accenture research, a small number of companies are enjoying returns of 20 percent or more on their emerging market investments. This month, I’ll provide an overview of that research and take a look at what these leading companies are doing to stoke emerging market growth.
By Mark Pearson · October 1, 2014
Big Data analytics is a big deal, particularly in supply chain management where this technology is broadly applicable but often underutilized. This month, I’ll present a brief overview of Big Data analytics, discuss its burgeoning role in supply chain management, and examine some recent research.
By Mark Pearson · September 1, 2014
In a very real sense, supply chain management is about managing risk: anticipating, avoiding, and minimizing supply chain upheavals caused by weather events, political havoc, technology problems, economic turmoil, market changes, currency swings, supply shortages and labor strife, to name but a few.
By Mark Pearson · August 1, 2014
Simply listing a typical company’s supply chain challenges could consume this column. However, there’s a small group of capabilities that are critical for supply chains in today’s volatile environment.
By Mark Pearson · July 1, 2014
According to a recent Accenture survey of manufacturers, 82 percent plan to increase U.S.-based production, 75 percent report a significant shortage of skilled resources, and 11 percent say that they estimate an average percentage drop in earnings due to increased production costs and revenue losses resulting from skills shortages.
By Mark Pearson · May 1, 2014
A growing number of manufacturing companies are warming up to sustainability—taking aggressive steps to soften and shrink their environmental footprints. However, buy-in from those companies’ suppliers has been less encouraging.
By Mark Pearson · March 1, 2014
Volatile markets. Unstable currencies. Vacillating demand. Unpredictable commodity costs. Manufacturers, like most companies, have plenty to worry about.
By Mark Pearson · February 1, 2014
In previous centuries, international trade volumes typically flowed east to west, with more goods, materials, and components journeying from emerging markets­— largely in Asia—to mature economies in Europe and North America.
By Mark Pearson · January 1, 2014
They may not recognize the term, but a lot of logistics and supply chain executives are concerned about “permanent volatility.”
By Mark Pearson · November 1, 2013
Innovation isn’t the only path to prosperity. However, a growing number of companies have come to think that innovation’s risks outweigh its benefits. Thus they’ve opted to retain their “safe” business models and also focus more on product line extensions than real breakthroughs.

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From the October 2017 Modern Materials Handling Issue
An early adopter, Rochester Drug Cooperative is using robotic piece-picking technology to complement picking of slow-moving items. System report for Rochester Drug Cooperative, Robotic picking and inventory management, Innovative distribution center robotics solutions , IAM Robotics case study
Injecting agility into WMS implementation
The Big Picture: Business as Unusual
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