2008 Supply & Demand Chain Executive 100

100 ways to innovate your supply chain with the providers of next-wave supply chain services and solutions


C3 Solutions

C3 Solutions
Montreal, Quebec/Canada
www.c3solutions.com
Private
1997
Fulfillment/Logistics

Most supply chains have been automated with EPR, WMS and TMS to track product from the beginning of its journey to the end. However, C3 Solutions says it is regularly approached by Fortune 500 and other high-profile companies to bridge a gap that these systems have left. C3 works with what are commonly known as the "first movers" or "early adopters" of yard management systems (YMS), a relatively recent addition to supply chain systems.

Yard management began with enabling wireless communication throughout the yard with software applications and used business rules to manage the movement of trailers within the yard. This transitioned to using algorithms to optimize the movement of workers and use of resources and incorporating the ability to plan and automate repetitive tasks within the yard. Today, C3 is introducing "agent technology" to yard management that can see and act on information within the enabler's solution in real time.

Usually, the initial challenges that clients approach C3 with are to generally improve customer service and cut costs, but they are also looking to eliminate specific challenge points that are undermining these basic goals on a daily basis. These challenge points include loss of visibility of product once it is in the yard, unmet delivery times despite the product being in the yard on time, lost trailers resulting in spoiled or ruined goods and poor utilization of yard resources – trailers, shunt trucks and workers. In some cases the sheer size of the yard dictates the need for a yard management system, with the huge volumes and number of transactions that have to be managed requiring automation to keep a given site running.

With the introduction of agent technology, C3 says that it is bringing a level of intelligence to the system that simulates an understanding of the business context. Before this technology the system could react based on a predetermined set rule, but now it can evaluate its own data and data provided by other systems – such as a WMS – and take action to maintain specific performance levels. As a result, the action that the system takes is meant to optimize benefit to the enterprise as a whole instead of a single operational area.


CaseStack
Santa Monica, CA/USA
www.casestack.com
Medium
1999
Order/Demand Capture, Procurement, Fulfillment/Logistics, Payment, CRM, PLM, Integration & Infrastructure/ERP

Small or midsize business should consider using technology and outsourced solution providers (in this case, for logistics) to appear to be a large enterprise. For example, Greystar Products uses CaseStack's transportation and warehousing system, backed with proprietary Web-based software, to provide end-to-end fulfillment services for its own customers' products. Greystar knew the logistics provider would help keep its retail customers happy while at the same time allow the consumer food manufacture to reap the benefits and economies of a sophisticated, global logistics system without all the infrastructure costs. "Looking like a major food company is very important to our accounts," said the company's president. "CaseStack allows us to do this by handling all our logistics needs. For a small company like ours that doesn't have its own internal logistics department, it makes a lot of sense to outsource to a company that is well-known in the industry."


CDC Software
Atlanta, GA/USA
www.cdcsoftware.com
Small
1999
Integration & Infrastructure/ERP

Unlock the hidden capacity on your factory floor by managing production scheduling in real time. By leveraging technologies that can pinpoint the causes of plant inefficiencies and provide immediate feedback on key operating metrics, including rate, yield, utilization and per-unit cost, manufacturing executives can link real-time action and continuous improvement initiatives to their financial goals for increasing output, finding hidden capacity and gaining market share. CDC Software says its CDC Factory solution allows users to leverage the potential of human capital on the shop floor by providing predefined workflows and intuitive kiosk-style interfaces for real-time performance tracking. This enables factory floor operators to act on information in real time and make decisions that have an immediate impact on efficiency, improve overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) and reduce waste. This role-based design extends to middle and senior management, for whom information is summarized to make the daily operations of all plants transparent throughout the enterprise.


Choice Logistics
New York, NY/USA
www.choicelogistics.com
Medium
1964
Fulfillment/Logistics

In today's economy, companies are faced with maximizing their asset management, and specifically their service parts resources, more than ever to reduce costs. The challenge is the ability to maintain adequate inventory levels to meet customer demands and adhere to stringent service level agreements. To that end, Choice Logistics helps clients position service parts worldwide through a system of strategic stocking locations (SSLs) and distribution centers (DCs) to ensure on-demand delivery in a matter of hours.

CIMTEK
Needham, MA/USA
www.cimtek.com
Small
1986
PLM

CIMTEK ends one of the challenges in the supply chain: how to bring quality products to market quickly and at the lowest possible cost. Having wrung all the efficiencies out of production and beyond, manufacturers are looking for different ways to increase margins. CIMTEK drives this next wave of innovation by changing how manufacturers act on product and functional test information, allowing them to organize, analyze and use critical information for actionable-insight throughout the product lifecycle.

At the heart of CIMTEK's solution is Magellon software, which introduces a centralized approach to managing product and functional test. The solution transcends all stages of the product lifecycle, rather than being strictly confined to the production process, for more comprehensive decision-making.


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