Tag Archive: Craig Young

Will Robots Pay Back?

January 13th, 2018

Supply Chain Briefing

I attended a compelling ProVisors presentation for manufacturers and distributors on the latest trends in technology for manufacturing.  Our presenter, Craig Young, discussed the latest advances in technology and what manufacturers should be thinking about to succeed in the New Year.  Robots were front and center in the discussion.

Robots in the workplace

Automation Advancements
Fully automated packaging lines should be quite popular with a typical 1-2 year payback – and that is prior to thinking about a vast array of non-financial advantages.  

Next up on the robots front is automatic storage and retrieval systems – although a longer payback of typically 5 years, they can bring a host of advantages and increase competitiveness.  

And, last but not least, we discussed laser guided vehicles with a typical 10-20 year payback with different advantages.   

What Should We Consider and/or What Impacts Could Arise?
Clearly, throwing robots at every problem is like Maslow’s hammer and the nail quote (if all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail).  Don’t do it!!  However, obviously, from the opposite perspective, there is something quite compelling about robots to achieve manufacturing objectives – profitable and scalable growth.  

Robots aren’t new.  I clearly remember a colleague at one of my jobs from 25 years ago when I was in planning/ purchasing/ inventory at Santa Fe Plastics (a plastic injection molding operation that produced consumer products like the jars for face cream) who spent 70% of his time working on a robot.  There were clear cut advantages, even way back then!   

Although a lot of executives think about robots from an automation and cost savings perspective, there are more important advantages such as keeping up with growth, replacing people as they retire (since it is a tough market to find good manufacturing resources), 24/7 focus and more.  

One of my current clients designed a robot that works around-the-clock.  Since putting the robot in place, they are able to keep up with customer requirements, have precise quality control and have maintained their long-term, high-skilled resources on first shift.  A definite win!  Others have brought manufacturing back to the U.S. – and even to California.

Everything in Perspective
Remember, robots shouldn’t be viewed as a hammer.  Think about what you need to accomplish and evaluate robots as one tool/solution to a business issue.  We are in the age of the customer experience.  Will robots help or hurt you with this endeavor?  Depending on your specific situation, it could go either way.  Think before jumping.

 



APICS Inland Empire Examines Emerging Supply Chain Trends at April 30 Symposium

March 22nd, 2016
Many emerging trends will impact how supply chains are managed, designed and operated in the future influencing the decision-making process right now. APICS-IE is assembling a panel of experts on Saturday, April 30 at the Eagle Glen Golf Club in Corona, Calif., to proactively help manufacturing, distribution and logistics attendees understand and predict trends that may later cause disruption.

APICS, APICS-IE, Symposium, emerging supply chain trendsThe Inland Empire Chapter of APICS,  the leading association for supply chain and operations professionals, is focused on investigating and predicting supply chain trends that may impact your business with its Spring Executive Panel & Networking Symposium: Emerging Supply Chain Trends on Saturday, April 30, 2016. Expert panelists including include Dr. Chris Gopal, Senior Fellow at the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management, Claremont Graduate University, and Executive Director of the Drucker Center for Supply Chain & Logistics, Craig Young, VP of Manufacturing Niagara Bottling, and Roy Paulson, President, Paulson Manufacturing, will not only share data and trends, but also how companies should be forward thinking and respond to slow moving stock, supplier reliability, lead times and forecasting. Attendees will also be able to ask questions, network and benchmark with area companies and build contacts within the manufacturing and distribution community to also help them build their career.

“In today’s Amazon-paced world, it is imperative to stay on top of emerging supply chain trends,” says Lisa Anderson, President of APICS-IE and LMA Consulting Group.  “This session will be a great opportunity to not only hear what the experts in supply chain think will happen in the future but it also is an unmatched networking event for students, professionals, executives and the media in supply chain.”

The APICS-IE Spring Executive Panel & Networking Symposium, Emerging Supply Chain Trends will be held Saturday, April 30, 2016 at the Eagle Glen Golf Club in Corona, Calif. Fees to attend the event from 8:00 AM to 11:30 AM are $15 for members, $25 for non-members and students are free. Breakfast buffet is included. Register here or cut and paste this link into your browser:

http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?oeidk=a07ec9kly6bbcbf5469&llr=pd7pgykab#