Supply Chain Article

Matthew M. Lowe’s picture

By: Matthew M. Lowe

While most business sectors have welcomed the efficiencies and benefits that cloud technologies and software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings bring, the life sciences industry has been slow to embrace external cloud networks. Merely a decade ago, in fact, an International Data Corp. survey showed that 75 percent of CIOs and IT executives in life sciences and healthcare fields surveyed said that security risks were their primary reason for opposing cloud technologies.

Cloud-averse attitudes are slow to change, and industry research shows that companies that manage health information continue to show major resistance to cloud technology.

Alex Bekker’s picture

By: Alex Bekker

Do you know what a retailer and a tightrope walker have in common? They both have to balance. For the tightrope walker, the logic is clear. But what’s the balance that a retailer is looking for?

A typical dilemma of shortages vs. storage costs

Although the dilemma of shortages vs. storage costs is applicable to any product category, it’s much more painful with perishables. If their quantity can’t meet the demand, retailers should be ready to see a frown from an unhappy customer who didn’t find her favorite dairy, fruit, or vegetable on the shelves.

However, staying on the safe side by ordering more perishables is hardly a cost-effective solution. Perishable products require special storage conditions, and their shelf life seldom exceeds a couple of days, which means retailers must address disposal issues. So, it’s easy to understand why retailers, by all means possible, try to find the optimal balance between storing too much and too little.

Bill Laverty’s picture

By: Bill Laverty

Operations management plays an important role in the manufacturing process, but similar to a stage crew at a theater, operations managers do all their best work behind the scenes. The best operations managers strive to go unnoticed, and why shouldn’t they? A seamless supply-chain process should require little to no attention from customers.

But recent tariffs are jolting operations. NAFTA changes, along with tariffs on Chinese imports, are forcing operations managers to step out on center stage. New tariffs on materials like steel and aluminum as well as electronic components could mean disruption in the supply chain process, and operations managers have to work diligently to mitigate any hiccups that crop up for the company and its customers alike. Certainly costs are going to increase somewhere, so companies have to decide whether they’re going to absorb them or pass them along to their customers, both of which are less than ideal options.

Terry Onica’s picture

By: Terry Onica

Since the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) and Odette International introduced the Materials Management Operations Guideline/Logistics Evaluation (MMOG/LE) more than 16 years ago, it has become the de facto standard for evaluating supply chain processes in the global automotive industry.

Robyn Metcalf’s picture

By: Robyn Metcalf

In an outbreak that has now run for more than 28 months, at least 279 people across 41 states have fallen ill with multidrug-resistant Salmonella infections linked to raw turkey products. Federal investigators are still trying to determine the cause.

Matthew M. Lowe’s picture

By: Matthew M. Lowe

It’s human nature to resist change, and the life sciences industry is not exempt from a change-averse mindset. The proof: Life science organizations (LSOs) lag far behind counterparts in other sectors in implementing digital technologies that are designed to streamline business and manufacturing processes.

Richard Ruiz’s picture

By: Richard Ruiz

When a customer asks to see your layered process audit (LPA) documentation, will you be ready? For many manufacturers, the answer is no.

Instead of having proof of an effective audit process, many companies are left scrambling for data that show low audit compliance and few actual results. Unfortunately, poor audit processes are enough to fail a customer audit, which could put your key contracts at risk.

Rachel Mann’s picture

By: Rachel Mann

With medical cannabis being legal in Canada since 2002, and recreational use becoming legal in 2018, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s promise to his country has caused a storm.

Alla Katsnelson’s picture

By: Alla Katsnelson

In August 2011, a can of Great Value peas joined the nonperishables in my pantry, one of several panic purchases as Hurricane Irene barreled toward my home on the northeast U.S. coast. But the emergency passed, and the can, with its unassuming blue-on-white outline font, remains on my shelf seven years later.

Its continued presence raises a dilemma in the form of a clearly legible stamp: “BEST BY 12/31/14.” Should I toss it? Can canned peas go bad? How would I know if they had?

Tom Taormina’s picture

By: Tom Taormina

Outsourcing is historically one of the most misunderstood concepts in quality management system (QMS) implementation and operation. Prior to ISO 9001:2015, the requirement for outsourced processes was limited to a few sentences in the standard’s clause 4.1. This article will present, through a case study, how understanding the implications that outsourcing, according to ISO 9001, is of key importance for a company.

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