Deploying drones to offer logistics solutions
Supply Chain 24/7 reported this week some exciting developments in Drone technology, which is slowly making its way into mainstream media and the public conscious.
The unmanned aerial vehicles, although characteristically utilized in warfare, also have other very useful applications. One company in particular, Matternet, was singled out for offering some pretty amazing logistics solutions for developing countries.
Around one billion people in the world do not have access to roads that can be used in all weather conditions. In Sub-Saharan Africa for example, 85% of roads are completely unusable during the wet season. One can imagine that making vital deliveries, such as transporting medical supplies, can be severely difficult in such circumstances. To further matters, with Africa’s current resources, it is estimated that it would take around 50 years to build the conventional road-based infrastructure used in developed countries.
The solution would be to skip investing in road-based infrastructure, and establish a logistics network across the continent, of autonomous, electric aircraft vehicles with ground stations to change batteries and deliver or collect goods.
The cost to run a 10km flight with a 2kg load would be an estimated $0.24.
Matternet has also proposed that such technology, when further developed, could be implemented in large built up cities, to offer more efficient transport options.
To read more, and find out other potential applications of the technology, click here.
Zady—why your fashion choices are no longer just about your style, but also your ethics
Zady is a New York based e-commerce brand that launched its website this week. Currently partnered with 35 brands, they promote and attempt to show complete transparency across the supply chain of its products. The company sells men’s and women’s clothing, as well as some household items. Each product is listed with what raw materials were used, where they originated from, and where they were manufactured. The website also details a brief history of each brand, and the location of its headquarters.
There is a story behind each garment, but it comes at a more expensive, albeit arguably much fairer price. The question is: are consumers willing to pay a bit more to not only ensure a higher quality end-product, but one that does not come with the baggage of knowing it was made under poor, if not life-threatening working conditions?
Co-founders of Zady, Soraya Darabi and Maxine Bédat would seem to think so. They appear quite passionate that there is a growing trend amongst consumers, to no longer be ignorant of where their purchases originate from. In short, “fast-fashion” is out; socially conscious consumerism is in.
To read more, click here.
CFOs and their supply Chains—taking a hands-on approach
Deloitte recently published an article in the Wall Street Journal detailing how CFOs are playing a more prominent role in successfully managing the supply chain. Their piece comes in the wake of recent natural disasters causing supply chain disruption, and the increasing awareness, that a highly analytical approach to supply chain management offers many advantages for strategy.
Although CFOs are no strangers to overseeing the supply chain, Deloitte suggests that the role has grown to incorporate working in spheres as varied as risk mitigation and brand management. Jim Harms, of Deloitte Consulting LLP, notes that CFOs are taking more responsibility in supply chain strategy, and a greater interest in unifying all business processes within the supply chain operation, to work together smoothly. If necessary, CFOs may also act as intermediaries to resolve conflicts that may arise amongst business units, due to differences in methodology.
In spite of this, planning for supply chain disruption, such as a natural catastrophe, is still a challenging reality for any operation. With, however, new advancements in supply chain analysis technology, supply chain chiefs can create simulation scenarios of potential interruptions. They can then model their implications for the supply chain and organization at large, and thus plan for the hypothetical outcome, to best avoid expensive delays.
To read more, click here.
Have a great weekend!