Tag Archive: autonomous vehicles

AI, Robots, IoT, Blockchain, Hike!

July 16th, 2018

AI (artificial intelligence), Robots, IoT (internet of things), Blockchain, hike! Doesn’t it sound like a foreign language?  It certainly does to my mother! Yet it is the language of the future.

business intelligence

Which of these technologies should we pay attention to?  Let’s look at some of the more popular ones:

  1.  AIDepending on your industry, AI will most certainly impact it.  Service industries such as accounting are definitely impacted. After all, if a program like Alexa can learn how to put together your taxes, it is bound to disrupt.  Machine learning and artificial intelligence can be powerful – preventative maintenance can be completely redefined in a proactive, predictive way.
  2. Robots – Isn’t everyone talking about robots?  Of course, this is partially because they are fun to talk about.  Is a robot good in all situations? NO! We’ve seen many manufacturers and distributors try robots and end up slowing the process down because they didn’t think about the full impacts.
  3.  IoT  We don’t even think about all the devices that are connected in our everyday lives.  Smoke alarms, security systems, phones, refrigerators, Amazon Alexa, our car, traffic signals, manufacturing machines, RFID tags and much more.  Connecting devices because we can yet for no valuable use just adds to the mountain of data to analyze. Instead, we should think about the strategic use of IoT for our business.
  4.  Blockchain Talk about another buzzword!  Isn’t a phone call, an email, EDI, lot traceability in ERP or a customer portal sufficient?  Many times – yes. Again, the value of blockchain should be evaluated before jumping on board with the latest and greatest trend; however, there will be uses.  When instantly visible, irrefutable and non-changeable (think avoidance of high potential fraud), traceable transactions are required, it might be just the medicine.
  5.  Autonomous vehiclesForklifts, cars, trucks, and more.  Again, let’s think ‘fit’ to our business.  In trucking, it is likely to make all sorts of sense.  Rates continue to rise. There is a shortage of drivers. Baby boomers are retiring. Environmental rules continue to increase. It does seem to fill a potential gap.

The underlying bottom line when it comes to technology remains – let’s not use technology for technology’s sake!
Instead, think smart. How does it fit with your business requirements? Will it provide a superior customer experience?  Purse those with a strong return on investment, ignore the rest and success will follow while your competition chases ‘shiny objects’.



Leveraging Technology for Supply Chain Success

November 11th, 2017

Supply Chain Briefing

My APICS Inland Empire chapter hosted our 11th executive panel and networking symposium on Leveraging Technology for Supply Chain Success.  We had interesting discussions with top notch panelists spanning the end-to-end supply chain from Disney to OceanX.  The panel covered diverse supply chain topics such as autonomous vehicles and machine learning – thanks to  Terrie Dean, Craig Young, Stephen Richie, Thomas Jelenic and Matt Weinberg .  The event was a complete success thanks in large part to our Board of Directors (pictured below) – Valerie Ladd, Kevin Manning, Lisa Anderson, Parizad Sethna, Phil Elhai, Pamela Scrivner , Tony Martinez, Kate Loin-Barron, and Helen Arambulo.    

The Impact Technology is Having on our Economy
It is compelling to think about the BIG impact technology is having on manufacturing, transportation, warehousing and more.  Robots are taking over several aspects of manufacturing and distribution to speed up the process and reduce costs, so that we can be more competitive and successful in Southern California.  Have you thought about what this could mean to our economy?  Machine learning and artificial intelligence is also prevalent.  What could we accomplish by having the “right” data at the “right” time in the “right” place?  The down-the-line impacts of the strategic use of data are staggering.

What Should We Consider and/or What Impacts Could Arise?
Leveraging technology for supply chain success is a vast topic. So, it makes sense to start by absorbing the relevance and importance of the topic.  Our most successful clients are constantly looking for ways to leverage technology to not only deliver products and services more quickly (think the Amazon effect) but also to remain viable from a cost perspective.  Have you thought about the value that can be gained by IoT?  The internet of things can capture data so that repair folks can be ahead of the game, parts can be available much more quickly, items can talk to one another (such as cars to traffic lights) and much more.  

The least we should do is be aware of the dramatic impacts technology could have on our businesses and to our customer experience.  Have you considered how to utilize technology to stand out from the crowd and deliver exceptional service so that your customers don’t even think of buying from anyone other than you?  Can you utilize data to better understand their needs?  Can you use technology to provide additional value?  What else could you do?  Gather your team and brainstorm.  Involve your customers in the conversation as well.  

Let me know how it goes.   

 



What’s New & Hot in Transportation?

October 31st, 2017

 

 

 

What’s New & Hot in Transportation?

I was a panelist at Mobility 21‘s (the Southern California Transportation Coalition) session, “Speed to Delivery: Goods Movement’s High-Tech Future”.  We had a fascinating discussion with a panel of experts from Walmart, Caltrans, the California Transportation Commission and Paul Granillo, Kome Ajise, Elizabeth Fretheim, FraInman.  One area with 100% agreement is that the Amazon Effect (inclusive of rapid deliveries, small shipments and easy returns) is the expectation.

For example, according to Fran, e-commerce is rising, master plan business parks are growing, omni-channel is taking over, the need for flexibility is at an all-time high and much more.  We live in a complex environment and transportation is gaining a larger role.  How will we deliver significantly more to Amazon-type customers?  How will we address the challenges of the last mile?  And certainly, in California specifically, how will we do all this with the traffic congestion? And with dramatically less emissions and with greater sustainability?  Will Amazon start competing with UPS and FedEx and what sort of impact will it have?  Let alone autonomous vehicles….

What Should We Consider and/or What Impacts Could Arise?

Who knew transportation could be so complex?  As much as goes into transportation, consumers are trained to think of it as “free” (think Amazon Prime) and quick.  That certainly provides two conflicting forces!

A good start is to absorb the vast topic transportation has become.  Are you or someone in your company thinking about transportation from a strategic viewpoint?  It doesn’t matter whether you have zero e-commerce and transportation doesn’t seem to be an issue.  Your transportation assets and shared infrastructure will likely be impacted by the vast amount of change taking place.  What might occur?  Will UPS and FedEx respond to Amazon’s moves?  Will truck capacity increase with autonomous vehicles?  Will your loads become more expensive because trucking companies have to invest in new infrastructure or will they becomes less expensive since an autonomous driver does not have to sleep and rest after 11 hours?  And if you own your own fleet, there are many rules and regulations to consider.

Join us at APICS Inland Empire’s executive panel and networking symposium to learn about the latest transportation trends, technologies and more.

 

 

 

 

Sav



Robots, IoT, AI, Autonomous Vehicles and More – Update From APICS 2017

October 18th, 2017

Supply Chain Briefing

I’ve been attending APICS 2017 in San Antonio, and there is LOT of talk about the digital transformation of the end-to-end supply chain. I listened to executives from J&J, Cisco, Microsoft, Whole Foods, Caterpillar, and innovative high-tech, rapidly growing companies, and the consensus is: Pay attention to technology. There is an opportunity to learn about the latest technologies such as robots, IoT, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, blockchain and more at APICS Inland Empire‘s executive panel and networking symposium on “Leveraging Technology for Supply Chain Success“. More important than understanding these cutting edge technologies, is thinking about how to apply them for end-to-end supply chain success. Are you taking the time to think about the impacts to your business and your career? Join us on Nov 4th.

What Should We Consider and/or What Impacts Could Arise?

To get the juices flowing in advance of this important industry event, start thinking about the potential impact to your business. For example, IoT has a lot of benefit for predicting machine maintenance needs. However, it can go far beyond this simple use. I’ll dedicate another article to just this topic as the APICS 2017 speaker from Microsoft had several compelling examples which will not only radically change how we perform jobs but it will also radically change the types of people we look for and the background/training that might give an interested candidate an exciting job.

Blockchain can have an enormous impact when considering the increasing need for transparency and risk mitigation with all the security issues that have occurred lately. The potential impact could be enormous for connecting partners and transactions in the end-to-end supply chain in a fast, secure and informed way.

Autonomous vehicles for all intensive purposes are “here”. It will take some time with testing and regulations but there will be interesting impacts when considering some of the issues that plague transportation today. For example, drivers cannot drive more than 11 hours a day; however, an autonomous vehicle could.  What would that mean for the speed and cost of deliveries?

Join us to learn about these technologies and more.

 



Technology – Should We Take It or Leave It?

July 18th, 2017
business intelligence

Technology is a hot topic. It seems we can’t stop talking about Artificial Intelligence (AI), 3D printers, and Autonomous Vehicles. But many technologies can be fads. Pay attention to what value can be gained before buying in.

Technology is a hot topic. Artificial intelligence. Autonomous vehicles. 3D printers and additive manufacturing. Business intelligence. We can’t stop talking about it. Many times, these topics are somewhat like fads. Even though there are benefits, we can get carried away and not even pay attention to whether we are gaining value.

Thus, we should take a step back and ask a few questions:

1. Do we need the technology or is it just cool?

2. What value does it provide? Does it yield a return on investment? What is that return on investment?

3. What is most valued by our customers? Time? Price? Features? Services? Which best aligns with their needs?

4. Is the technology supporting the business goals or the other way around? Which is your lead for your conversations?

5. Are you caught up in bells and whistles or focused on value?

6. Are you leading with tech or with the customer experience?

7. What do your customers expect? Can you leverage automation for a win-win?

 

Did you like this article? Continue reading on how to become a Systems Pragmatist:

Technologies Transforming Supply Chains

What’s Important in Technology