Amazon’s New Cross-Dock Facility

Amazon’s New Cross-Dock Facility

September 7, 2020

Amazon is planning to build an 855,000-square-foot fulfillment center in Goodyear, Arizona.

The fulfillment center will hire 3,000 employees, who will work together with robots to pack online orders for delivery.  In addition to the fulfillment center, Amazon is planning to open a cross-dock facility and six delivery stations across metro Phoenix.


Video Spotlight: 


This post is based on the AZ Central article, Amazon to hire 3,000 in metro Phoenix, including 1,000 at high-tech Goodyear robotics facility, by Joshua Bowling, August 19, 2020, and the YouTube videos in the Spotlight. Image source: Syda Productions/Shutterstock

Discussion Questions:

1.   What role does Amazon’s Goodyear fulfillment center play in its supply chain management?

Guidance: The fulfillment center in Goodyear, Arizona will take online orders from customers, retrieve items ordered from storage/cross dock and pack them for delivery.  Employees help pick customer orders by identifying items for robots to prep and stack on pallets for shipping or stowing.  The result is increased Continue reading

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Sally the Salad Robot

Sally the Salad Robot

August 26, 2020

Are you missing your self-serve salad bar because of the pandemic?  Maybe technology can get you the salad of your dreams.

Chowbotics has created a self-serve salad robot called Sally The Salad Robot.   Sally can be filled with 22 canisters of various items, with over 150 ingredients that are approved for the containers.   Through a touch screen, the user can combine these 22 ingredients into a variety of feature salads, grain bowls, yogurt bowls, and snacks.  Over 1,000 possible bowls can be made by combining these 22 items in different ways with Sally.  You can select a predetermined recipe, or combine the items to make your own unique creation.

Sally the Salad Robot has an expanded appeal with the presence of Covid-19.  Many locations have eliminated their self-serve salad bars for safety reasons. But, the demand for customized salad remains.  As a result, Sally the Salad Robot is very attractive for several industries, including the food department in supermarkets like ShopRite, in hospitals, and in higher education.


Video Spotlight: The Salad Station’s rapid brand expansion through the 24/7 salad robot. (Nov 27, 2019, chowbotics)


This post is based on the Continue reading

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Wholesalers Reducing SKUs

Wholesalers Reducing SKUs

August 12, 2020

During the pandemic, many supply chains have been stressed with rapidly changing demand and disruptions in supply.

One way to reduce this stress is to simplify operations.  The supply chain can function better with fewer SKUs (Stock Keeping Units).  This allows supply chains to focus on fewer, more important items, which helps offset some of the additional problems added by the pandemic.

Many organizations are reducing their SKUs, including Kraft Heinz, Coca-Cola, and Hershey.  Coca-Cola has a goal of reducing SKUs by 25%, and has established a mechanism to identify SKUs to be eliminated.

To give you an idea of the complexity of the supply chain, the average grocery store stocks 33,000 SKUs; a Walmart Supercenter will carry around 120,000 items.  Over the years, the number of SKUs has tended to increase.

Offering a greater variety of SKUs provides the customer with a greater selection of items.  This works well when customers are taking their time shopping for items.  During the pandemic, however, many customers are trying to reduce their time in the store to avoid potential exposure to the coronavirus.  Reducing the number of variations of products allows customers to more easily Continue reading

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