The 2020 Mid-Year Economic Update_long

Day: June 1, 2009

How Sysco Uses Technology to Manage Its Complex Supply Chain

A recent article from Fortune Magazine looks at how foodservice distributor Sysco uses technology to manage its shipments internally and externally - schools, stadiums, assisted-living facilities, and more - if the venue serves food, chances are Sysco supplies it.

The distributor ships 21.5 million tons of produce, meats, prepared meals and other food-related products each year, per the article. It uses software, databases, scanning systems and robotics to do it efficiently.
 
As the article says:
"Sysco's supply-chain logistics are especially complex because a single jar of caviar can't be handled the same way as a box of frozen onion rings or an 80-pound tub of flour. That rules out most off-the-shelf inventory-management software. ...

The Difference Between Values and Expectations

It's easy to confuse expectations with values. At least according to Jim Ambrose it is. Think about it this way. I have a restaurant I go to at lunch because it's close. Lousy service; food's OK. And I expect that, says the president of BranchManagerCEO.com. "The manager always asks me if they met our expectations today, and I say yeah, you certainly did. The food was lousy and the service was lousy; that's what I expect. But it's close so I keep going back."
 
Ambrose values the proximity and is willing to accept the mediocrity of everything else because of it. However, if a restaurant were to open up in the same area with better food and better service, he ...

Some Companies Taking Advantage of Growing Supply of Available Skilled Workers

According to this article online at the Wall Street Journal, manufacturers in some areas of the country have seen a dramatic increase in the number of qualified applicants to fill skilled positions. Those companies that are still growing sales are taking advantage of this to "upgrade" their work force, so to speak.
 
It's a somewhat positive note in an era of negative news; distributors who may be hiring or plan to in the near future to meet returned demand should make what some call a talent management plan to ensure they meet current and future needs based on strategic direction.
 
Easier said than done, perhaps, but a large number of highly skilled and experienced ...