Table of Contents: April 2009

best practices make (nearly) perfect
Our sixth annual survey of DC and warehouse metrics shows that the skillful use of measurements leads to better operations.
the big switch
The prospect of losing three key employees to retirement proved to be just the impetus switch-maker Saia-Burgess needed to automate its warehouse operations.
packed with pride
There's no magic in the process, or the buildings, or the technology used at the military's sprawling distribution complex near Harrisburg, Pa. It's the ethic that pervades the DDSP that makes the operation something special.
forks in the road
They both represent the interests of truck owners and managers. But when it comes to policy issues, two prominent trucking groups find common ground elusive.
if at first you don't succeed ... : interview with Robby Dhesi
When he quit his job in frustration over a failed WMS installation, Robby Dhesi never dreamed he'd someday be back overseeing another one.

Big Picture: the ghosts of Smoot and Hawley
Laws that restrict trade in an interdependent global economy cannot help a recovery and have great potential to slow it.
Fastlane: the road less stimulated
While it may provide a boost to the economy, let's not pretend the economic stimulus package is a meaningful investment in infrastructure.
Labor Pool: how to deal with survivor's guilt
With wave upon wave of layoffs hitting the workforce each week, these are brutal times on the employment front.
Outbound: a downturn in ethics
Companies that forget to secure their data and systems when employees depart could pay a high price for that oversight.
Techwatch: on-demand WMS could rock distribution
After changing the face of the TMS market, it appears that the SaaS delivery model is about to do the same for warehousing apps.
animal (ware)house
This year's ProMat show attracted a number of exhibitors with animal-related names.
Mitsubishi's Methuselah
Mitsubishi has announced the winner of its search for the oldest working Mitsubishi forklift truck in North America.
electric avenue
A U.K.-based maker of zero-emissions electric-battery trucks has set up shop in the United States.
WhiteWave's green DC
Electric forklifts and a new battery-charging system reduce a dairy company's environmental impact.
look on the bright side
The outlook for intermodal transportation may not be as gloomy as it might appear, says one carrier executive.
sense and sustainability
Survey finds supply chain execs see value in green initiatives but lag in the execution.
cut, cut, cut won't work
Management gurus warn that wholesale job reductions can cause more problems than they solve.
weak year ahead for warehouses and DCs
It's not going to come as a shock, but the 2009 outlook for U.S. warehouse and DC property market isn't very rosy.
death by exaggeration
After DHL layoffs, Wilmington, Ohio, is down but not out.
strengthening their hand
Boston Rack International announces merger with Base Manufacturing.
maybe slower isn't cheaper after all
New study challenges conventional wisdom about international shipping costs.