Table of Contents: October 2006

freight costs ballooning? Let some of the air out
They have little control over freight rates and less over fuel prices, but cost-conscious shippers still have one option: work closely with carriers to cut out wasteful spending.
easy riders
Forklifts designed for the "Nintendo Generation" are not only more comfortable, but safer, cleaner and smarter than ever.
a fortune in reversal: interview with Herb Shear
Herb Shear parlayed his company's expertise in reverse logistics into a brand new niche market, transforming a small family business into a $400 million corporation along the way. Think he's resting on his laurels? Think again.
will loose lips sink chips?
With their ability to store a product's full history, RFID chips promise to solve a variety of retail woes. But some fear that without added security features, they'll divulge the data to anyone with a scanner.
Pep Boys' back-end alignment
Galloping costs drove the Pep Boys automotive chain to realign its transportation operations, saving $2.5 million in just 18 months.

Voices
Basic Training: get informed on information systems
Whenever a change in information systems is undertaken, there is the promise of success and the risk of failure.
Big Picture: early Christmas, brought to you by the supply chain
Christmas goods arriving in the DCs in August create their own set of problems: inventory carrying costs and overcrowded DCs.
Fastlane: less can be more
As confusing as the choices may be, there are three rules of thumb to keep in mind when buying a TMS.
Labor Pool: how to get what you're worth
If the salary you're offered seems low, don't lose hope. You may be able to coax a better offer from the company.
Outbound: how to find seasonal help without seasonal headaches
Companies looking for seasonal help aren't just hiring sales clerks; they're also hiring people for logistics operations. But when those seasonal staffers depart, they sometimes leave headaches behind.
Rfidwatch: someone to watch over RFID?
Is it time for the RFID technology community to form its own advocacy group? Doug Farry thinks so.
Rfidwatch: group wins $1.1 million grant to study security gaps
A consortium that is studying the security and privacy implications of RFID tags has won a $1.
Inbound
Big Brown goes green
The trademark brown UPS delivery trucks making the rounds in Michigan over the past few months may look like any other UPS vehicle.
... and DHL's not far behind
Like UPS, DHL has joined the fight to cut its delivery vehicles' greenhouse gas emissions.
Averitt on the alert for missing kids
Averitt Express recently joined the AMBER Alert Highway Network, a nationwide initiative to help recover abducted children.
who'll be working on the railroads?
Forget the driver shortage.
Crown "crowned" ... again
What does the Crown TSP 6000 Series Turret Stockpicker have in common with the Toyota Prius, PowerMac G5, RazR V3 mobile phone and hydrogen-powered Intelligent Energy ENV Bike? They've all been recognized by the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) for excellence in design in the past five years.
roundtable Italian-style
They can be found from Brazil to Benelux, from Spain to South Africa.
Ryder helps drivers keep on trucking
They might be embarrassed, but at least they won't be grounded.
Newsworthy
DC help wanted!
Job market coming to a boil in logistics/transportation sector
it's official: Watkins joins FedEx fold
FedEx, a company whose name was once almost synonymous with overnight delivery service, is now officially in the longhaul LTL business.
Wal-Mart's batting a thousand
Retailer on track to have 1,000 stores RFID-enabled by January

Continuing Education

learn at your own pace
Those willing to forego the classroom experience for the freedom to learn at their own pace don't have to look far for options these days.
leadership potential?
For those looking to build up their resumes, the University of Wisconsin- Madison now offers an opportunity to earn a certificate in Supply Chain Leadership.
lessons for the sourcer's apprentice
In its broadest definition, supply chain management covers all things associated with the planning, sourcing, making and moving (and perhaps return) of a product.