Cyberattacks on industrial equipment could be mitigated through the use of low-tech strategies. Andy Bochman of the Idaho National Laboratory recommends using vibration systems to detect breaches or having a backup system that could take over if malware is detected.
Manufacturers should stick to ordering from business-to-business companies if they want the best service and quality, Mike Roth writes. Business-to-consumer companies might be cheaper but financing, reliability and risk management are all concerns when using B2C firms.
Companies that work with warehouses or distribution centers might find that a warehouse management system is a better match for their needs than an enterprise resource planning system, writes Eric Allais, president and CEO of PathGuide Technologies. WMS solutions are specifically designed for warehouses and can be integrated with ERP systems if needed, he argues.
California's Port of Long Beach -- the second-largest in the US -- saw volume growth of more than 17% during the first four months of the year, and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey reported volume is up 11.6%. A strong economy in imports and exports, low unemployment and high consumer confidence are supporting the growth.
Amazon's liberal returns policy has been a draw for online shoppers, but moves by the company to shut down serial returners could also be a good thing for consumers, Shep Hyken writes. About 11% of returned sales are fraudulent, according to NRF data, and policy changes like those at Amazon and L.L. Bean can curb costs that would be passed on to consumers.
Amazon has rolled out its Map Tracking package locator feature nationally for all orders, after launching a limited version last year. The feature lets Amazon customers access details on how many stops the driver will make before delivery and includes a map that tracks the truck.
Arrow Electronics has expanded over time beyond electronics distribution to offer a variety of solutions and technologies to many industries. "We strive to be the platform that customers go to for the things they need to be the best for their own customers," CEO Michael Long says.
Grainger's contact center in Janesville, Wis., has about 1,200 employees and has transformed over the years as business moved from phones to e-commerce. This Grainger location increasingly hires millennials, has relaxed its dress code and is focused on career growth.
Data quality and sharing, specific milestones and visibility reporting unique to various needs are key aspects of a successful visibility initiative, writes Descartes executive Chris Jones.