Table of Contents: March 2007

we're gonna need a bigger box
Adopting lean principles on the plant floor is a great start. But look beyond the plant floor to distribution and logistics for a greater payoff.
just chillin'
Dairy Crest's national distribution facility in the United Kingdom could be described as Europe's largest dairy case.
not your standard mandate
When it comes to consumer electronics, size doesn't matter. RFID tags are ready and waiting to be embedded in everything from iPods to refrigerators.
software at your service
The "software as a service" delivery model promises to save TMS users time, money and hassles. But they'll have to learn to share.
got game?
Third-party service provider Agility proved it's got game during the holiday shipping rush, when it whisked hot-selling PS3 and Wii consoles to retailers under often-harrowing circumstances. An inside look at the challenges the company overcame.
the view from C level: interview with D. Beatty D'Alessandro
The question of how logistics is viewed in the boardroom has been the subject of endless speculation.We asked one prominent CFO, and what he told us may surprise you.

Voices
Basic Training: taking the measure of metrics
Aren't we getting tired of hearing about metrics? Maybe, but we hope not. A set of metrics is indispensable. It's how you keep score.
Big Picture: flat but tilted
As manufacturing, and increasingly, service industries move forward with their searches for the lowest-cost places to do business, many of those who perceive themselves as victims of globalization have begun to push back.
Fastlane: it's not easy being green
Over the past two years, Wal-Mart has been rolling out an ambitious environmental sustainability program, and it's taking its suppliers along for the ride.
Special Handling: automation sheds its bad rap
Twenty years ago, automation was perceived as a lethal weapon to use on your own employees. But as companies struggled to compete with their new, low-cost competitors, people began to see automation in a whole new light.
Outbound: weatherproofing the supply chain
For those who've been pondering the problem of how to keep goods and supplies flowing when disaster strikes, a tip sheet from software specialist Manhattan Associates may offer some help.
Rfidwatch: tag sales to approach 2 billion this year
More than 1 billion RFID tags were sold worldwide in 2006, according to research firm IDTechEx.
Inbound
rolling on the river—or not
With last year's well-publicized shortages of truck and rail capacity, you might expect that 2006 would turn out to be a banner year for alternative transportation modes like barges.
here comes the sun
Giving a whole new meaning to the term "green grocer," the U.
sweet and low
They may be known for their chocolate, but the Low Countries have earned a reputation as a sweet spot for an altogether different reason as well.
yet another "track" record
Setting records is getting to be a habit for the nation's rail industry.
diagnostics on board?
At the rate things are going, you have to wonder if tomorrow's big rigs will have much room for drivers or even freight.
want to be greener?
What better time than a week after Earth Day to schedule a conference on energy-efficient supply chains? A one-day conference sponsored jointly by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Center for Transportation & Logistics (CTL) and the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) will take place on MIT's campus in Cambridge, Mass.
one word: plastic
Ordering a load of plastic pallets might sound easy enough.
Newsworthy
a question of congestion: DOT advances plans to ease traffic tie-ups
Relief may be on the way for motorists accustomed to fighting traffic on I-95 between Massachusetts and Florida or 1-10 from Florida to California.
high tech gets low grades: survey finds shippers unhappy with their supply chain systems
They have systems to manage transportation, orders and warehouse operations as well as software to provide supply chain visibility, but companies in the automotive, aerospace and defense industries say they're just not satisfied with their existing supply chain technology.
eyes on the skies: coalition gears up to fight aircargo security initiative
It's not just maritime security that has caught the new Congress's attention.
ITA head invited to address Chinese lift-truck group
The Industrial Truck Association (ITA) reports that its president, Jim Malvaso, has accepted an invitation to deliver the keynote address at the annual meeting of the China Industrial Truck Association (CITA).
12 million containers: Can we scan them all?
Late last year, the outgoing Congress adopted—and the president signed—a bill aimed at improving security at the nation's ports.

Continuing Education

if you have the time, MIT has the course
Whether you have a single day or a full week to devote to professional development this spring, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Center for Transportation & Logistics (CTL) has a program to fit your schedule.
the world is its campus
It's unlikely to have a gridiron team anytime soon, but the Supply-Chain Council's newly launched Supply-Chain Council University does offer managers new opportunities for advanced education.
all over the map
No matter where in North America you're located, there's probably a "Fundamentals of Supply Chain Management" workshop coming to your area sometime this year.