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2020 Supply Chain in Numbers and Charts

With about 9 days still left in January, I am at last wrapping up our review of the supply chain in 2020, this week offering our popular look at the past year in numbers and charts.

Two weeks ago, I summarized what I thought were the key supply chain themes and trends of 2020 (see Review of the Year in Supply Chain 2020). Then last week I posted the top two stories in each month in 2020 (see Top Supply Chain News by Month in 2020.)

So, let’s get right to it the numbers and charts.








Gilmore Says….






Even before the pandemic, the Cass truckload Linehaul Index, which tracks US truckload rates, was on a downward trend that started in 2019.







What do you say?

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We always do a check on the US and global economy, as that has such an impact in the end on supply chain practice. And 2020 was an extreme roller coaster, to say the least.

Q1 of course includes March, when the virus outbreak began in the US. That led to a decline in GDP that – under normal times – would seem a severe contraction of 5.0%. Then came Q2, which made Q1 look like a piker, with GDP dropping a whopping and by far record 31.4%. Then came a snapback of 33.4% growth in Q3 – but from depressed Q2 levels.

 

It seems certan full year GDP will be negative, probably far exceeding the 2% decline in the deep recession year of 2009 and maybe worst since the Great Depression.

 

Amazingly, the  US has not been reached 3% GDP growth since 2005, continuing a record span in failing to reach that mark, which used to be commonlace.

 

Meanwhile, after taking something of a pandemic hit early on, China says its GDP rose 2.3% for 2020 – making it the only large economy to see growth for the year.

 

The International Monetary Fund expects the global economy to grow 5.2% in 2021, after falling 4.4% in 2020, though it is updating its forecast on Jan. 26.

 

In the US, the IMF economists foresee 2020 growth of 3.1%.

 

The WTO estimates global trade volumes fell a large 9% in 2020, but are expected to rise 7.2% this year. However, growth in trade levels have simply never recovered from the Great Recession.



Not surprisingly, the US Purchasing Managers Index from the Institute of Supply Management, which tracks US manufactauring growth, went on a wild ride in 2020. The index, for which a score over 50 indicates US manufacturing expansion and under 50 contaction, briefly reverse a long mostly down trend, with a index level of 50.9 in January. But the number went back down bit in February, then fell sharply in the pandemic, reaching a signficant low of just 41.5 in April.

The scores the last few months have been strong, reaching a very good 60.7 in December, as seen in the chart below. However, that does not mean US manufacturing output was greater than in February, when the score was 50.1 – it wasn’t. What it means is that a higher percentage of manufacturers say they saw growth last month than they did in February.

 

 

 

Another view of US manufacturing strength is the monthly index on output for US factories from the Federal Reserve.

 

That index started the year at a level of 104.9 in January, versus the baseline year of 2012 (index = 100).

 

The measure fell sharply with the pandemic, reaching a low of just 83.3 in April, then gradually improving to reach 102.2 in December.

 

And at a December index level of 102.2, it means US manufacturing output is just 2.2% above the baseline year of 2012, now nine years later, meaning almost no annual growth since then.

What’s more, that also means current output still remains well below the peak year of 2007, when the index reached an historic high of 110.0 in December. US factory utilization fell sharply in April and May but has recovered to 73.4% in December, but well below the average of 78.2% between 1972 and 2019.

What is clear is that the stories on manufacturing coming back to the US are anecdotal at best, and that the trend is just not showing up in the numbers.

 

Looking at oil, the price for WTI crude started 2020 at $61.18 per barrel reached a high for the year a few days later, then went in to a strong decline spanning several months, before bizzarely falling into negative territory in April.

What does that mean? For a few days, demand fell so sharply, especially among refiners, such that combined with an extreme lack of storage space an oil owner had to pay someone to take the ocrude off their hands. Prices ended the year at $48.53, down 21% from the start.

 

 

 



Non-contractual diesel prices started the year at $3.07/gallon, then headed steadily down to a low of $2.37 in November before ending the year at $2.63.

Freight volumes were mixed, with ATA freight tonnage index down 3.3% in 2020, but ending on a modest strong note, up 2.3% year-over-year. That also put US freight volumes back to near pre-pandemic levels. It also marked the 11th consecutive year of annual tonnage gains.

Even before the pandemic, the Cass Linehaul Index, which tracks US truckload rates, was on a downward trend that started in 2019. As seen in the graphic below, rates were down year-over-year for 15 straights months before barely turning positive in November and December. For many months in Q1 and Q2, the decline in rates was a steep 6-9%.


 

 

It was another tough year for US railroads. Total US rail traffic for 2020 was down 7.2%, and the once fast growing intermodal traffic component was down 1.8%, but that was better than 2019.

In terms of ocean container carriers, volumes and rates fell sharply for awhile early in the pandemic. Then carriers started cancelling sailings to reduce capacity – and rates jumped. They kept going up for the rest of the year, driven by a return of volumes and a lack of containers.

The China Containerized Freight Index ended the year at about 1625, up from just 750 at the start of the year. That means rates more than doubled, with reports Chinese officials were bringing carriers in and warning them to put a lid on further rate hikes, concerned the costs would dampen export volumes.

In the end, the US tariiffs clearly had little impact on the US trade deficit. Imports from China were down from 2019, but so were US exports to China, and the decline in imports was more driven by a pandemic-related decline in the overall economy than tarifffs. Chinese imports were back to near record levels of about $45 billion in October and November, the last month for which data is available, versus just $14 billion or so in US exports to China. The full year trade deficit with China will be about $320 billion, down not much from $435 billion in 2019 despite the weak economy.

The growth of ecommerce sales in the US went bananas. Growth in Q1 was up about the usual level, a robust 14.8% – but that looks wimpy now. On-line sales were up an incredible 44.5% in Q2, and 36.7% in Q3.



I have lots more but am out of space. Hope you enjoyed all this.

 

What is your reaction to the supply chain 2020 in numbers and charts? What would you add? Let us know your thought at the Feedback section below.


Your Comments/Feedback























































Srihari


Senior Consultant, Infosys

Posted on: May, 22 2016

Great article. I am a little suprised not to see BNSF in the mix while I understand their financial mode/operation is a little different. 

That would only give a complete perspective with all the players in the pool.






Mike O’Brien


Senior editor, Access Intelligence

Posted on: May, 26 2016

Surprised to see Home Depot fall off the list; thought they were winning with Sync?






Julie Leonard


Marketing Director, Inovity

Posted on: Jun, 27 2016

Using the right tool for the right job has always been a best practice and one of the reasons, we feel, that RFID has never taken off in the DC as exponentially as pundits have been forecasting since 2006. While these results may seem surprising to those solely focused on barcode scanning, the adoption of multi-modal technologies in the DC makes perfect sense for greater worker efficiency and productivity.






Carsten Baumann


Strategic Alliance Manager, Schneider Electric

Posted on: Aug, 19 2016

The IoT Platform in this year’s (2016) Hype Cycle is on the ascending side, entering the “Peak of Inflated Expectation” area. How does this compare to the IoT positions of the previous years, which have already peaked in 2015? Isn’t this contradicting in itself?

Editor’s Note: 

You are right, Internet of Things (IoT) was at the top of the Garter new technology hype curve not long ago. As you noted, however, this time the placement was for “IoT Platforms,” a category of software tools from a good number of vendors to manage connectivity, data communications and more with IoT-enabled devices in the field.

So, this is different fro IoT generally, though a company deploying connected things obviously needs some kind of platform – hoe grown or acquired – to manage those functions.

Why IoT generically is not on the curve this year I wondered myself.

 

 






Jo Ann Tudtud-Navalta


Materials Management Manager, Chong Hua Hospital, Cebu City, Philippines

Posted on: Aug, 21 2016

I agree totally with Mr. Schneider.

I have always lived by “put it in writing” all my work life.  I am a firm believer of the many benefits of putting everything in writing and I try to teach it to as many people as I can.

This “putting in writing” can also be used for almost anything else.  Here are some general benefits (only some) of “putting in writing”:

1. Everything is better understood between parties involved.  There are lots of people types who need something visual to improve their understanding.
2. Everyone can read to review and correct anything misunderstood.  This will ensure that all parties concerned confirm the details of the agreements as correct.  This is further enhanced by having all parties involved sign off on a hard copy or confirm via reply email.
3. Everything has a proof.  Not to belittle the element of trust among parties involved, it is always safest to have tangible proof of what was agreed on.
4. There will be a document to refer to at any time by any one who needs clarification.
5. The documentation can be useful historical data for any future endeavor.  It provides inputs for better decisions on related situations in the future.
6. This can also be compiled and used to teach future new team members.  “Learn from the past” it is said.

There are many more benefits.  Mr. Schneider is very correct about his call to “put it in writing”.






Sandy Montalbano


Consultant, Reshoring Initiative

Posted on: Aug, 24 2016

U.S. companies are reshoring and foreign companies are investing in U.S. locations to be in close proximity to the U.S. market for customer responsiveness, flexibility, quality control, and for the positive branding of “Made in USA”.

Reshoring including FDI balanced offshoring in 2015 as it did in 2014. In comparison, in 2000-2007 the U.S. lost net about 200,000 manufacturing jobs per year to offshoring. That is huge progress to celebrate!

The Reshoring Initiative Can Help. In order to help companies decide objectively to reshore manufacturing back to the U.S. or offshore, the nonprofit Reshoring Initiative’s free Total Cost of Ownership Estimator can help corporations calculate the real P&L impact of reshoring or offshoring. http://www.reshorenow.org/TCO_Estimator.cfm






Robert


Transportation Manager, N/A

Posted on: Aug, 30 2016

 Good article!  I am sending this to my colleagues who work with me.  We have to keep this in mind.  Thanks!






Ian Jansen


Mr, NHLS

Posted on: Sep, 14 2016

SCM is all about getting the order delivered to the Customer on date/ time requested because happy Customers = Revenue. Using the right tools to do the right job is important and SCM is heavily dependent on sophisticated ERP systems to get right real data info ASP.

I’ve worked in a DC with more than 400,000 line items and measured the Productivity of Pickers by how many “picks” per day.

I’ve learned that one doesn’t have to remind Germany about your EDI orders.






Don Benson


Partner, Warehouse Coach

Posted on: Sep, 15 2016

Challenge – to build and sustain effective relationships at the level of the organizations that are responsible for effectively coordinating and colaborating in an otherwise highly competitive environment 






Jade


Admin, Fulfillment Logistics UK Ltd

Posted on: Oct, 02 2016

Of course we all need to up our game. We need to move with the times, and always be one step ahead of what the future will bring.






Mike Dargis


President of asset-based carrier based in the Midwest, Zip Xpress Inc. (at ZipXpress.net)

Posted on: Oct, 03 2016

Thanks for the article, but I know there’s a lot more to this issue than just the pay rates. Please check out my blogs on the subject at www.zipxpress.net.






Blaine


Inventory Specialist, Syncron

Posted on: Nov, 16 2016

Lora, great article! I agree that companies choose the ‘safe’ solution more often than not. My solution is a bolt-on for legacy ERP’s and we even face challeneges of customer adoption. Most like to play it safe and choose an ERP upgrade, which is more costly, time consuming, and has lower ROI across the board. Would love to learn more about your company, we are always looking for partnerships.

Blaine
[email protected]






Bob McIntyre


National Account Executive, DBK Concepts LLC

Posted on: Nov, 21 2016

This is a game changer in GE’s production and prototyping.  It also has huge implications across the GE global supply chain with regard to the management of their support and spare parts network. 






Kai Furmans


Professor, KIT

Posted on: May, 22 2017

I am referencing to the comment that leasing of warehousing equipment (beyond forklift trucks) is a vision for 2030.
Just recently in Europe, such a business model has started, see here: https://next-intralogistics.de/

I am following with a lot of interest, how the business develops.






Stuart Rosenberg


Supply Chain Consultant, First Choice Supply Chain

Posted on: Jun, 05 2017

If we limit the standard on judging or determining the best supply chain to just three calculations it does not tell the entire picture.  Financial performance metrics are valuable as they capture the economic consequences of business decisions.  But supply chain managers make decsions and use organizational resources that impact a company’s financial well being.  Where is a firm’s earnings over a period of time determined by sales less product costs and general/adminsitrative costs?  Where is the metric for determining the sources and uses of cash from three perspectives – operational, investment and financial?  Where are these supply chain metrics: on-time delivery, lead time, response time to customers, product returns, procurement costs, network distance, inventory carrying costs, forecasting accuracy, sourcing time, etc,.  Without knowing the results of all these supply chain calculations the there must be a question as to the accuracy of the 25 top supply chains.






Dustin Calitz


Project Commercialization Manager, Mondelez

Posted on: Jun, 06 2017

I feel this ranking misses the mark in SC. It does not seem to consider a key indicator in days inventory on hand, which is key to determining a SC company’s ability to forecast, manage inventory costs and reduce aged stock. In additiion I realize it’s difficult to understand what goes into the customer survey, but would I assume specific metrics are being asked. For examples customer’s opinion on service level differentiation and the ability to deliver the right product on time, which should then be allocated a bigger weighting than 10%. It would also be interesting to take a view of the above list’s SKU portfolio complexity, seasonality and launches/promotions. I would again assume some companies on the list above have a far more complex SC to manage and lead, ultimately requiring a lot more innovation within a SC to stay ahead of competitors, and ultimately satisfy their customers demands.  I understand above metrics are difficult to measure, as mentioned in the article, but they somehow need to be considered to give a true reflection. 






Michael Hurd


Lean Consultant, Unemployed

Posted on: Jun, 10 2017

A Very Good Article…

While some feel that lean is a scam that pushes for more out of the personnel and out of the companies through reduction of waste and adding value for the customer, there are several things to remember:

1) Lean methodologies are designed and implemented to reduce time wasting, so this may seem that you are working harder as an employee.

2) Lean methdoligies only work when everyone from the janitor to the owner of the company get involved and back the program.

3) Lean methods are there to make you work smarter not harder, although it may feel you are working harder.

4) YES… Sometimes lean methodologies fail! This is due to project overun or taking on too large a problem and trying to fix it all in one go and not taking the smaller problems that are associated with the large problem and fixing them first. Sometimes fixing the small problems leads to resolution of the larger problem.






Akhil


Director Supply Chain , skuchain

Posted on: Jul, 31 2017

The Supply Chain technology is not considered a problem because traditionally supply chains are thought to be cost centres unlike sales functions. The tendency, in general, to limit expenses and cost cutting on upgrades for technology and for talent have been hindering progress for the businesses. Supply chains lack real time visbility and above all trust across the value chain (not that the participants are dishonest) rather it’s about the cascading effects referred to as the bull-whip effect which causes higher magnitudes of disruptions. 

Supply chain real time information should top the list .

Another problem is that of multi homing as so much data is available across several feeds of IOT/Email/Internet /Mobility/ERP that organisations tend to have issues around finding a single platform to collate them for meaning analysis. 

Blockchain (if deployed appropriately) can be a great solution for solving the issues around the supply chain.






Mike Ledyard


Vested Program Faculty, Vested Way / University ofTennessee

Posted on: Aug, 04 2017

Excellent article.  It very much points to the need for Shared Risk / Shared Reward as we teach at Vested.  Suppliers will respond when they are made part of the team, and they have a lot to bring to the game.  The service provider is the subject matter expert in the services provided, and in an excellent position to enhance the capabilities and services offered by the shipper.






Andrew Downard


Managing Director, AD Supply Chain Group Pty Ltd

Posted on: Aug, 05 2017

As the article points out it is not a lack of technology that is holding back performance but rather a failure to form the right sort of relationships.  As well as the length of such relatiohships, practitioners should consider employing arrangements that incentivise both parties to innovate and deliver levels of performance and profit that neither thought possible.  By far the best model I have come across to achieve this is the Vested Outsourcing model developed by researchers from the University of Tennessee.  See www.vestedway.com for information on the model and case studies that show how others have benefited from creating a Vested deal.






Najma


logistics, threelineshipping

Posted on: Aug, 23 2017

Very informational article. The major focus of logistics is on e-commerce. There is a need to optimize every component of logistics by following the latest trends and technologies. Thanks for uploading this article.






Sameer Shukkla


Consulting Partner, Wipro Inc.

Posted on: Sep, 17 2017

I have recently co-authored a white paper with my colleague wherein we have looked at 2 fundamental guiding principles  –

1. Always have enough to Sell / Produce
2. Do not have excess to Sell / Produce

These 2 Golden Rules can be the foundation of keeping optimal inventory levels and for organizations to achieve the same. We have looked at a framework which tries to reduce the phase mismatch between Demand & Supply, and tries to bring the shape of the supply curve closer to shape of the demand curve.

We have classified symptoms and underlying root causes for the above “Phase mismatch” and “Curve Mismatch” between Demand and Supply, and then talked about addresssing those individual root causes to strive towards Leaner Inventory levels while maintaining or improving service levels.

So to answer your question, we feel the Companies which have addresed these causes have been able to keep DIO horizontal or even going down, while others have not been able to control rising DIO because of not addressing the root causes.






Simon Eagle


SCM Consultant, Camelot MC

Posted on: Sep, 17 2017

You ask why turns are flat or declining despite lots of attention and technology. The answer is, I think, 2 fold: the supply chain environments VUCA (Volatliity, Uncertainty, Complexity, Ambiguity) is on a continuous upward curve and this means that forecast accuracy inevitably declines in parallel – and much of that inaccuracy is hidden by the statistics. For instance a company with, seemingy good, 80% mix accuracy will find that figure is skewed so high by the few high volume / low variability items. 80% of the items will be achieving considerably less than 60% error.

So most item level forecasts used for driving replenishment through an MPS (be it ERP or APS) are simply leading to unbalanced stocks, service threats and continuous expediting / fire-fighting. These schedule interrutions are “variability” that is disrupting flow and, thereby, increasing lead-times, using unplanned capacity and generating excessive (and still unbalanced) inventories.

The replacement in ex-stock supply chains is “enterprise(s)-wide” pull which also uses “push” for extreme/exceptional events. Its other key characteristics are that the supply chain is decoupled and is demand-driven. And now it can be implemented using SAP since they announced they they have co-developed an enhancement for IBP that supports this transformational way of working – up to 50% inventory reduction, requiring less capacity and shorter lead-times all while achieving planned service levels. See https://www.camelot-itlab.com/en/camelot-demand-driven-lean-planning-suite-for-sap/ and https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/supply-chain-flow-what-why-how-simon-eagle/






John Smith


Research & Development, Octopus Tech Solutions

Posted on: Sep, 18 2017

IoT is without a doubt starting to become a major factor in the profitability of various companies. In the manufacturing sector, we will see it come into the front by the end of 2020 completely. Various sectors have already adapted IoT solutions like the security industry or companies offering BPO Services India. Contact centers not just in India and China but across the world have adapted technology following the principles of IoT. The manufacturing sector is soon going to follow.






Girish Maniyar


Chief Manager Development Initiatives, Asian Paints

Posted on: Sep, 28 2017

I  can speak with some context. While efficiency and tools can reduce inventory, we also see the number of SKUs and new products increasing, and also the number of sales/depot points. This means the inventory in such cases, can start with very high number and with more customization and choices available to the consumer, so there is no end to the long tail of products available within a category. It is unlikely that the slow/dead goods are written off so easily to be not included here.

A larger question, would it be purely an IO problem or also a Demand Planning (Forecast Error) problem? A higher cycle time of service but a better fill rate can improve inventory performance, by aggregation. But a bad forecast can do away all the good work you do in inventory planning.

Do you have numbers for decorative coatings in the list? I did not see something there only for decorative coatings.






Reo B Hatfield


Chief Operating Executive , BestTransport

Posted on: Oct, 20 2017

My opinion is that peaks and valley are just nice graphics to explain.  Smooth responses save the day.   3PLs  just adjust to the climate and the areas of movement of Logistics.    One purpose of the 3PL movement was to adjust to an always changing market.   They will never be fixed and will flex as the logistics changes.   3PL companies have vast knowledge of their business.  Their success is their ability to move up and down as the market flows.  They bring a level playing field to the transportation world that in the past was rigid but looked good on spreadsheets.  Industry graphic personnel like to be able to answer all the changes because they can only see documents.  3PLs see the needs, the issues, the positive changes and the knowledge to know why and when to adjust.   They (3PLs) have smoothed the waves of the past and everybody likes to see the spikes so they know something is there to clearly report on. Smooth sailing is boring but sure gets you where you want to go. 






Catherine Dennis


Supply Chain Manager, Indak Mfg Corp

Posted on: Oct, 26 2017

So the horrific and severe worldwide allocation of electronic components is not an issue?  Don’t tell that to the automotive buyers.  It’s HORRIBLE.  Lead times out to up to 76 weeks.  Why not write about that?  It’s killing us, our customers and the big automakers.   






Huub


Logistics Manager, Shell

Posted on: Nov, 11 2017

I suggest McKinsey to do a bit more research in Prof Gattorna’s dynamic alignment. This article only scratches the surface a tiny bit. Much more to be found reading about the alignment concept.






Joseph George


Farmer, Field Vista

Posted on: Dec, 07 2017

Primarily Vision is required followed by Assigned Focus on objectives.  Or maybe just love for USA.  The market will not find its way unless it’s for organic vegetables and RRR.  Two to three years later will take two to three years longer to the end of the decade, and this is viable today.  God bless america from its present distraction.






Gary Buchs


Owner Operator , Self, Landstar Business Capacity Owner

Posted on: Dec, 17 2017

In My Opinion, the fact that capacity will tighten should be obvious to everyone engaged in the transportation. 
Capacity to move freight isn’t how many trucks or trailers are in the system or what a computer 
program says, it still is truck driver based and poorly-managed companies won’t be able to imporove
this fact.  Investing in people is still most important!

Get ready to pay higher prices for goods and services. I think we could lose 10% of Capacity in many areas. 






Dan


Pres., Bioptechs

Posted on: Dec, 20 2017

After all the ground we have lost in the productive sector and the additional burden that loss of our productive momentum has placed on our society, somebody tell me why so many people are against the actions necessary to restore our vital productive infrastructure! It is like the left enjoys shooting itself in the foot!






Jayaram


Business Development, Raghava Logistics

Posted on: Mar, 04 2018

Great article and thank you for summerizing the predications. 

What does it mean to country like India where the labour is still cheap? Where the logistics cost is still on the higher side compared to some of the developed nations?






Herb Shields


President , HCS Consulting

Posted on: Mar, 06 2018

 I agree that robots can replace some amount of manual labor in logistics centers.  However as you mention, the labor pool is shrinking.  We need more training programs such as the one provided by the Greater West Town organization in Chicago.   Www.gwtp.org.  (It is a program that your readers should find interesting.)






Billy


Associate, BJO

Posted on: Mar, 13 2018

Thanks for this very informative article.






Doug Murless


Country Manager, krunchbox (www.krunchbox.com)

Posted on: Mar, 18 2018

Gone are the days when consumers will wait for a retailer to have the product back in stock, those days are done. We live in the “I want it now” society and with Amazon in their pocket consumers can easily “now” it to themself the next day right from their phone.

The importance of product availability is under the microscope at all retailers as an empty shelf equals lost customers, a poor customer experience and entirely abandoned purchases.

We are on a mission at krunchbox to help suppliers fix their product availability and sell thru and improve their buyer relationships, hopefully before their retail partner fines start rolling in and or we see more retailers close.






NikhilSingh


Executive, Carmatec INC

Posted on: Mar, 21 2018

You are correct There are government programs to encourage investment at small and mid-size manufacturers, but McKinsey says these programs generally have smaller budgets, less certainty of ongoing funding, and more constraints on their mandates than comparable programs in other countries. Policy makers should examine which existing initiatives are producing the most promising results, then scale up those efforts and commit to them for the long term.






Chuck Nemer


Trainer, The Guru of Biz

Posted on: Aug, 16 2019

Nice metaphor and nice picture.  I’d like to see a bit more meat on the bones if you’re going to completely sell me on the concept.






Charles Quail


CLO, Belair

Posted on: Jan, 20 2020

The truth from the road is that rates were so good, that 2018 was the best year we had since 1997.  So as we saw this happening, we saw carriers increased their fleets to capitalize on this gravy train, thus depressing the rates for 2019 from overcapacity.  They also flooded the used truck market, and sales dropped 70%.
We know because we also were thinking of retiring, but cannot sell our lightly used 2019 Mack Anthem because of this.  So we claim it was not the high cost structure, it was the greed.






Tom Miralia


CEO, Distribution Technology

Posted on: Feb, 26 2020

Multistory Bronx DC  $700 million and 1.2 million sqft- what’s the rent going to be- $3.50 per sqft per month?  $40+ per sqft annually.  In many metros, thats higher than the best Class A office rent and about 9-10 times a going rate in the suburbs?  Well, space cost is the least cost in supply chain typically- still, must be a compelling business model to drive this?

Let’s pretend that a product is valued at $50 a case, 60 cases per pallet, maybe stored in rack at 8 sqft per pallet in a narrow aisle single-select layout of some form- if total logistics expense ranges 8% maybe, then there’s $240 in budget to flow goods from sourcing to customer.  Now the retail customer may spend more to get it to the end purchaser which is beyond my scope (and may folks ability to truly model I suspect).  if that pallet occupies that rack spot for 2 months that rent expense might range about $56?  That takes almost the whole budget for warehousing portion of logistics costs before labor, equipment, admin, materials and so on?

I dunno if I’m seeing this right?  Likely I’m off base?






Peter


Sales, Freight sales

Posted on: May, 08 2020

From a sales prospective:  Our company only uses small trucking companies and gives them the business directly. We sell right to the manufacturer.   The companies we sell for have no sales force and are good hardworking companies who would usually have to rely on only brokers. We help them with appointments billing bids when needed. This year despite our companies doing an excellent job and not raising there rates we lost many accounts or were reduced significantly to brokers.






Harry Moser


President, Reshoring Initiative

Posted on: Sep, 24 2020

Mr. Meidinger is correct that high healthcare costs have hurt U.S. mfg. He overstates his case by describing healthcare as the primary cause:

  1. U.S. healthcare costs % of GDP are about 7 points higher. Our mfg. costs are 20 to 40% higher.
  2. The costs paid by taxes in the other countries require highrer salaries and selling prices to obtain the same after tax benefit.
  3. His graph shows correlation, not causation.
  4. For a clear comparison of the impact of various factors, see the Competitiveness Toolkit https://reshorenow.org/search/. We include lower healthcare costs as one of several important factors in driving further increases in reshoring.






Chris Imamura


Executive in Residence, University of Colordao

Posted on: Oct, 10 2020

You note that 28% of Amazon’s operating income came from its AWS web services unit.  However, from their 2019 Annual Report, Amazon reported $9.2B of the total $14.5B operating income came from AWS = 63%.  What am I missing?

  

 






Robert Simoneau


Consultant, PolyEd

Posted on: Oct, 13 2020

This is an excellent article but a few more details would help. As a lecturer for the Society of Manufacturing Engineers spent a lot of time working with and teaching Tier suppliers. The stories they told were grim from two perspectives. First US automaker are slow to pay their bills, net whenever. The second is the timeline to pay for tooling, some claimed it took one year to get paid. As one group said we spend most of our time hiding money. I consulted for one of the big three and when I asked a group of managers and engineers, when do you pay your bills, they all laughed in unison … big joke. I was furious and tried to explain to them how this affected their supply chain. It took a lot of effort for GM to go from 50% market share in the 50s, to less  than 20%. When doing thier financial analysis they forgot about quality related issues and the eventual loss of market share. Interesting Boeing is doing the same thing with pretty much the same result … sad. 

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