Blogs - StrataFlows

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Automating Material Change Requests

Changes on the product floor are a part of doing business, unavoidable.  You might as well embrace change by automating it.  How do you track the changes today?  Relying on your ERP system from our experience doesn’t cover all that change typically entails.  For example, how do you track if approvals are required, bins need …

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forklift, warehouse, supply chain

Five Ways to Resolve Material Flow Issues

As you probably know, supply chains remain in chaos, and while in some aspects of the overall situation, there may be some light at the end of the tunnel, it remains crucial to ensure that you get things right the first time.  Part delivery is slow and costly enough. You …

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best supply chain management software

The Worst of Two Evils – ERPs or Spreadsheets

You know your supply chain is a logistical nightmare with poor communication, a lack of standards, and little transparency.  On top of everything else, you are too busy putting out fires to think of a solution.  For most, it comes down to two solutions: 1) Trying to fix the issues by changing your ERP system.  It is …

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process automation

5 Ways to Improve Process Automation

There are many reasons why 3PLs and manufacturing companies have inefficiencies with their processes. These inefficiencies cause disruption in material flow, increase downtime, and cause delays which ultimately cost businesses time and resources. Here are 5 ways to improve your Process Automation Improve Communication – Poor communication is the root …

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Digitally Transforming Logistics in the Supply Chain

Digitally Transforming Logistics in the Supply Chain

Companies have increasingly been adopting newer technologies in recent months to get a jump start after the Covid-19 slump. With customer demand being so volatile in many industries, it has often been a task for 3PL and 4PL companies to adjust their business processes to combat these disruptions. Business closures, …

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Amazon’s Meteoric Growth in a Pandemic

Amazon’s Meteoric Growth in a Pandemic

Amazon’s logistics footprint grew a meteoric 50% during 2020, all with a pandemic going on. What is the secret to Amazon’s successful growth this past year? 1 word: Automation. People sometimes associate automation with downsizing or a way to cut costs, but Amazon took a different approach and made it …

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Innovation Struggles in Small and Medium-sized Enterprises

Innovation Struggles in Small and Medium-sized Enterprises

Innovation can be tough task for smaller businesses looking to get a competitive advantage. In the US small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are generally companies with less than 500 employees, but based on the industry, ownership structure, and revenue, that number can be as high as 1,500 employees. PricewaterhouseCoopers says …

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Robots Taking Over Supply Chain

Robots Taking Over Supply Chain

Robots and robotic processes are portrayed in many Hollywood blockbusters as a part of the science fiction world, but now they are becoming a crucial component of the manufacturing and logistics industries. Deloitte says these autonomous robots can range anywhere “from robotic process automation to flying vehicles with powerful image …

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Safety Stock vs Lean Manufacturing

Safety Stock vs Lean Manufacturing

In this time of volatile markets, supply chains are struggling to find the right balance between keeping lean manufacturing practices with just-in-time (JIT) inventory strategies and buffered inventory levels with plenty of safety stock. According to Gartner VP of Supply Chain Research and Advisory Geraint John on Supply Chain Dive, …

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Logistics Nightmares Freight Transportation During Weather Events

Logistics Nightmares: Freight Transportation During Weather Events

Unexpected weather events can wreak havoc on domestic freight transportation and the 4 ‘ways’: roadways, railways, runways, and waterways. Trucking (on roadways) is the largest (70% of the manufacturing and warehousing industries) and often the hardest hit industry for that reason during these big storms. The Superstorm in 1993, Hurricane …

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Using Big Data to Optimize Operations

Using Big Data to Optimize Operations

Manufacturing and logistics companies have vast amounts of big data that is often underutilized in their operational decision making. This Dark Data, as Gartner defines it, is “the information assets organizations collect, process and store during regular business activities, but generally fail to use for other purposes (for example, analytics, …

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Stay Resilient When Supply Chains Change

Visibility: Stay Resilient When Supply Chains Change

According to The Economist, when the swine-flu pandemic of 2009 happened “companies ramped up production…only to be driven to the verge of bankruptcy when demand fell back to normal”. Building resilience in your company to plan for changes is vital to staying competitive year after year. But how do you …

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Material Flow Analysis

Optimize Material Flow: Analyze Issues and Exceptions

StrataFlows Featured as an Expert Columnist in Supply & Drive Chain Executive Material Flow Analysis (MFA), or Process Flow Analysis (PFA), is fundamental to any material handling strategy. MFA aims to map, inspect, and evaluate all flow of materials from suppliers, to storage locations, and finally to the point of …

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Technology Solutions: Thriving Amid Disruptions

Technology Solutions: Thriving Amid Disruptions

Resiliency has been the overwhelming theme in the past year as companies have grappled with changes in the supply chain due to Covid-19. As the ProMatDX approaches in April, manufacturers are reminded of software solutions that give them more visibility in their supply chain as they recover and prepare for …

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StrataFlows is Exhibiting at ProMat DX 2021

ProMat Digital Experience (DX) 2021, presented by MHI, is quickly approaching. This show connects manufacturers and supply chain professionals with access to the solutions they need now to modernize and improve the resiliency and agility of their operations. This year, like most other tradeshows, ProMat will be taking place virtually. …

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Lean Manufacturing: Uninterrupted Flow

Lean Manufacturing: Uninterrupted Flow

The Toyota Production System adopted a methodology in 1930 making production processes highly efficient. In recent years this methodology has been lauded for the successes of Toyota and has been defined and named Lean Manufacturing. According to Kettering Global, these “lean techniques have been adopted by more than 72 percent of machine shops across the country”.  There are five core principles of lean …

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Software Cobots: Warehousing in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Software Cobots: Warehousing in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

The Fourth Industrial Revolution, also known as Industry 4.0, has been a decade in the making. It is the converging of IT (Information Technology) and OT (Operational Technology) and is driving the transformation of connectivity, intelligence, and flexible automation in the manufacturing industry. Industry 4.0 is a sort of technology toolbox with the goal of digitizing data, in real time, …

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Robotic Process Automation RPA for Manufacturing

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) for Manufacturing

The manufacturing industry is changing, and many organizations are utilizing Robotic Process Automation to do business these days. Robotic Process Automation, or RPA, is a crucial component of the fourth industrial revolution, also known as Industry 4.0. Industry 4.0 is the shift in manufacturing that is increasingly using digital solutions to solve physical problems. An RPA is an …

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Stay Ahead of Changes with a Command Center

Stay Ahead of Changes with a Command Center

The importance of Supply Chain Management has been crucial these past 9 months. Covid-19 has challenged companies’ abilities to adapt quickly in a rapidly changing global supply chain. In the last decade companies have increasingly streamlined their supply chains, but with the uncertainty of Coronavirus, agility has become a big focus in materials management as well as supply chain management.  These past few months …

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A warehouse employee implementing the issue tracker module on their tablet

3 Critical Elements of a Supply Chain Control Tower

Supply chain professionals at every stage of their career know there is increasing risk in our global supply chain – they see it, and at times, they really feel it. It may not have been as easy to quantify, though as it is now, thanks to the McKinsey Global Institute …

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Gartner COVID-19 CIO Action Recommendations

Gartner, the leading research and advisory company, put together a list of recommendations outlining actions technology driven organizations should take in response to both short- and long-term effects of the Covid crisis.    Not only has Covid put major stress on individuals and businesses in the present-day, but we will unfortunately …

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Top 5 Reasons Spreadsheets Can’t Drive Process Change

Top 5 Reasons Spreadsheets Can’t Drive Process Change

Paper. Email. Spreadsheets. Compared to the automated, fast-paced environment of manufacturing, these tools are antiquated, cumbersome, and slow. Yet supply chain managers rely on paper, emails, and spreadsheets every day for critical functions including material handling. This often leads to costly production outages due to material flow or other avoidable …

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COVID-19 Employee Self-Assessment Module

COVID-19 Employee Self-Assessment Module

As organizations reopen in-person services, they need to keep employees and customers safe. StrataFlows’ COVID-19 employee self-assessment module helps minimize the risk of exposure to someone infectious with COVID-19 as organizations provide important in-person services.  Employees can use StrataFlows’ COVID-19 self-assessment survey module before reporting to work each day. You can …

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supply chain disruptions

Mitigating Material Flow Exceptions in times of Supply Chain Disruption

7 steps to building more resilient material flow processes Even “last mile” material flow disruptions, close to the Point of Use (POU) in the supply chain, quickly result in significant delays and unnecessary financial cost when it brings production to a halt. Mitigate material flow exceptions using the following recommendations: …

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