Supply Chain Solutions

July 11, 2008
A quick round-up of the latest supply chain technology offerings.

Descartes Systems Group has introduced intelligent Automated Vehicle Locator (AVL) wireless services, available on the Descartes Global Logistics Network. Descartes' AVL services integrate on-demand delivery route planning and execution with Web-based tracking of vehicles via global positioning satellites (GPS). The AVL services extend visibility to fleets in the field and enable delivery route changes on-the-fly when exceptions occur. Descartes' AVL is available on a variety of mobile devices and wireless networks, and integrates with many back-office software applications.

The KPI Scorecard from TrackSpeed is a Web-based enterprise-class application designed to enable complete control over supplier cost savings compliance. With KPI Scorecard, suppliers have instant access to a user-friendly portal for submitting standardized cost savings templates. Suppliers and their customers exchange vital supply chain performance data while gaining visibility to the exact status of cost improvement projects and cost savings documentation. Users can utilize KPI Scorecard to establish and monitor progress toward a variety of goals, including lean manufacturing objectives, diversity spending, green initiatives, cost avoidance programs and low-cost country sourcing targets. Capabilities include: automated entry and approval functions; on-demand, real-time scorecard measures; single data repository to eliminate inefficiencies and maintain consistency; and advanced workflow approval process to ensure consistent procedures.

The Infor SCM Warehouse Management Business Edition is a warehouse management system (WMS) tailored to the requirements of small to midsized businesses (SMBs). The solution provides built-in best practices for key warehouse functions like storage (putaway) and allocation strategies, location definitions and area/zone definitions. The service-oriented architecture framework allows customers to add additional modules, such as RFID, billing and labor forecasting, on a scalable technology foundation that supports future growth.

FlexNet Warehouse Management for Manufacturers from Apriso integrates warehouse operations with production processes to help eliminate idle inventory, provide complete traceability across production and the supply chain, increase quality and drive lean initiatives. This software solution is designed to help manufacturers: enhance efficiency and accuracy within the warehouse and production line for improved operations performance; increase manufacturing agility and throughput; reduce inventory and WIP; provide "dock-to-dock" traceability and genealogy; and decrease the cost of quality and Six Sigma through smart sampling and inspection processes.

ILOG Inventory Analyst 7.0 and ILOG Product Flow Optimizer 7.0 are the latest versions of ILOG's LogicTools suite of supply chain applications that help companies reduce costs while maintaining high customer service levels for manufacturers, retailers and distributors. ILOG Inventory Analyst helps manufacturers develop global inventory optimization strategies to improve inventory turns and free up working capital, increasing cash availability as a result. ILOG Product Flow Optimizer, meanwhile, enables the creation of stocking and distribution strategies that analyze trade-offs between transportation, warehousing, inventory carrying costs and service requirements, helping the user determine the optimal path of delivery from the source directly to consumers.

TradeMaster Global Trade Management System from QuestaWeb Inc. includes a new ePOD feature, which stands for electronic proof of delivery, that's designed to enable any supply chain participant to use any mobile device with Internet access to record worldwide pickups and deliveries in real time. Data posted via ePOD are immediately available for real-time shipment tracking in all TradeMaster modules, including both the Track and Trace and the Global Trade Visibility modules. Once entered, a firm's overall shipment information can be consolidated and analyzed for purposes of improving outbound load planning.

Supply Chain Guru, a supply chain network design software solution from Llamasoft Inc., includes advanced transportation modeling capabilities. Users will now be able to optimize the number of transportation assets required (containers, pallets, trucks, railcars, etc.), assess the proper positioning of these assets throughout the supply chain, and consider seasonal demand variation. In addition, they will be able to accurately optimize, analyze and predict a supply chain's service behavior, including: on-time shipments, on-time orders, shipments filled from inventory and individual orders filled from inventory. Users can now calculate their supply chain network's carbon footprint and use this information as a constraint in carbon reduction activities.

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