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Archives for December 2013

How to improve the health of your medical device supply chain

By Tom Pettit | 12/10/2013 | 5:10 AM

From a cost of doing business to a source of advantage

Improving patient care and outcomes while reducing costs can be a difficult balancing act. Especially if you’re in the medical device manufacturing business. You’re already wrestling with increasing margin pressures and product complexity, changing distribution networks, globalization and tough regulatory requirements. Consider these six potential remedies: 

    1. Re-engineer processes
      Consider centralizing shipment planning and execution to boost shipping efficiencies. Implement processes to manage and report on performance, and use network optimization tools to optimize your network. Use visibility tools to track products and events and consider co-locating packaging and warehousing.
    2. Step up regulatory compliance efforts
      Make sure your packaging, transportation and distribution systems meet all regulatory requirements, including FDA regulations, Good Manufacturing Practices, C-TPAT certification and international industry standards.
    3. Be ready for changing transportation and distribution requirements
      Be able to warehouse, fulfill and deliver orders across distribution, retail, end-user and primary care channels. Your warehouses should be compliant, secure and able to distribute parts, components and products wherever they’re needed.
    4. Enhance visibility
      Get the visibility you need to align inventory levels with supply and demand and stay on top of delivery status across the value chai
    5. Tune processes to adapt to product complexity
      From just-in-time manufacturing, sequencing, line-side delivery and packaging to kitting, labeling and managing recalls, a trusted 3PL can help simplify operations.
    6. Go Lean
      Leverage Lean principles and practices to enhance quality, eliminate waste, and adapt seamlessly to shifts in demand and handle multiple products and SKUs.

To learn more about how you can optimize your medical device supply chain, read our full blog post here.

Four ways to navigate your way to becoming shipper of choice.

By Tom Pettit | 12/03/2013 | 6:15 AM

With capacity at a premium, carriers are in the driver’s seat.

As much as things change in today’s transportation space, there’s one constant: the growing shortage of capacity and drivers. According to recent TransCore Freight Index data, the available load-to-truck ratios for dry vans, flatbed and temperature-controlled have reached unprecedented proportions.

With capacity at a premium and carriers becoming more selective about whose freight they’ll transport, how do you become a shipper of choice? Here are a few tips ...

What truck-load (TL) carriers look for when transporting full truck loads:

  1. Consistent year-round volume
  2. Favorable origins and destinations
  3. Compensatory fuel program
  4. Flexible, fair contracts
  5. Favorable payment terms

What less-than-truckload (LTL) carriers want when moving partial truck loads:

  1. Compensatory fuel program
  2. Compensation for idle time
  3. Flexible, fair contracts

Becoming a shipper of choice can help you secure more favorable rates …

Whether you’re shipping TL or LTL, becoming a shipper of choice helps you steer clear of paying higher rates in the spot market. The key to being selected is offering consistent volumes, fair compensation for fuel, desirable origins/destinations and flexible contracts.

Meeting all these criteria can be tough if you ship seasonal freight/products. However, you can still offer fair compensation for fuel, a flexible contracting process and pay competitive rates. Together these factors can still help you become a shipper of choice.

To learn more, read the full article here.

The opinions expressed herein are those solely of the participants, and do not necessarily represent the views of Agile Business Media, LLC., its properties or its employees.



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