Acme Distribution - Denver, Chicago, Harrisburg, Dallas

September 2009 Newsletter

September 2009 Newsletter
Iterative Processes Symbiotic Relationships Recession Logistics

We work in a volatile, rapidly changing marketplace nearing  this final quarter of 2009, which necessitates that we should be engaged in a highly iterative process for peak performance of our 3PL businesses.  It requires the repetitive and efficient ability to (1) benchmark results against best-in-class companies; (2) gauge effectiveness; (3) adapt promptly to change; and (4) maneuver rapidly through automation, technology, and implementation processes

Thus, the primary prerequisite to adaptation is studied and deliberate advance planning.     Achievement of painstaking planning may be realized by the implementation of practices such as adumbrative  projection and innovative re-structuring.

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Rosalyn Wilson—an independent consultant and author of the 20th Annual State of Logistics, which was published in mid-2009, and sponsored by the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals—predicted “We have not hit bottom yet.”  Over the course of 2008, Wilson reports that total logistics costs continued to drop, with many fewer (1) asset-based carriers and (2) 3PL providers willing to invest in long-term strategies for growth. Unfortunately, they did so at their own peril, Wilson asserts.

Warehousing costs rose 9.5 percent during the first half of 2009, with warehouse managers reporting that inventory turns were down substantially from earlier years as stock spent more time in warehouses.

“While the numbers look pretty bad for carriers and 3PLs, I’m telling everyone to consider what we taught when I was a Girl Scout leader,” reminisces Wilson: “Every great challenge offers the opportunity to excel.” In this industry’s context, that means that shippers must take a more proactive role in nurturing supply chain relationships,  while 3PL’s need to invest in more efficient technology in order to create a symbiosis between the two which will behoove both when this current state of the economy corrects itself.

During the current economic downturn, the glass may appear half-empty to many—perhaps most—while others perceive the same glass as half-full.  In which category do you find yourself, based upon the following criteria?:

  • Have you laid off workers OR have you upgraded and trained your labor force, offered cross-training and certification programs?
  • Have you frozen IT spending OR have you taken advantage of the current slow period to upgrade and to train?
  • Have you ceased all Travel OR have  you proactively visited customers and providers?
  • Have you idled Distribution Centers OR have you rearranged racking more efficiently and “performed Kaizen events in the warehouse”?

[Source of final bullet:  Dr. Bruce Amtzen, MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics.]

Message from ACME's CEO
China & The Global Economy

The world continues to shrink and every one of us is impacted in a host of different ways. Those of us in the distribution world recognize how much manufacturing takes place in China, and how much support it takes to complete the sales and distribution cycle throughout the world. Acme has been part of that process for decades and has successfully shifted to meet the changing needs of the world economy.

As part of that shift, we are pleased to announce our affiliation with several international and Asian based organizations specializing in supply chain support and manufacturing interface. These affiliations have been carefully selected to align with the values and focus that you have come to know and expect from Acme. Our primary goal is to offer you additional value add services whether it be in your offshore manufacturing or in the management of your supply chain on either side of the globe. We believe that our formidable experience and daily exposure to the international world of business makes us a great partner for you as you look to enhance and grow your organization.

While our focus on domestic operations will never waiver, we think it is important to become actively involved in the international marketplace so that we can represent and assist our present and future customers in a globally intelligent fashion. As always, we stand ready to participate in the growth of your organization and in strengthening our position in the marketplace.

Your feedback is very important to us. Please take a moment to contact any of your friends at Acme to share your thoughts. We'd love to help you explore the possibilities that might exist not only in our traditional North American markets, but in the vast number of markets beyond our shores.

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