Houston, We Have a Cargo Problem

Houston, We Have a Cargo Problem

October 9, 2017

Article Title: Harvey Blocks ‘Critical’ Point of Entry for Cargo

Authors of Article: Brian Baskin and Erica C. Phillips

Date of article: August 31, 2017

Source URL: https://www.wsj.com/articles/harvey-cripples-key-point-of-entry-for-cargo-1504126803 (link does not require a WSJ subscription)

This article illustrates the importance of disruption mitigations in supply chain management and just-in-time systems.

With the closure of Port Houston after Hurricane Harvey, large container ships and oil tankers are re-routed to as far as the Bahamas and Mexico.  Businesses that rely on these shipments are facing shortages of parts and goods.  The disruption’s ripple effects are impacting businesses that use Houston as their distribution center and companies that provide trucking services.

Discussion Questions
1. What are the impacts of shipping disruptions on supply chain management?

Guidance: The article provides examples of businesses and types of businesses that have been impacted. Can incorporate a discussion of JIT systems, and the risk this adds to the supply chain.

2. What actions can companies take to mitigate disruptions in their supply chain networks?

Guidance: Examples are given in the article, and can be used to start class discussion. Can discuss multiple sourcing strategies, and how logistics can mitigate or Continue reading

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Managing Inventory with Surgical Precision

Managing Inventory with Surgical Precision

October 2, 2017

Article Title: How can your ASC reduce waste by 5% and accrue savings? Manage your inventory

Author of Article: Mary Rechtoris

Date of article: September 11, 2017

Source URL: http://www.beckersasc.com/asc-turnarounds-ideas-to-improve-performance/how-can-your-asc-reduce-waste-by-5-accrue-savings-manage-your-inventory.html

Ambulatory Surgical Centers (ASCs) have untapped opportunities to reduce waste by better managing inventory. One recommendation is to collect data on the supplies surgeons are actually using during surgeries, to better match supply with demand. A surgical center which did this analysis saved 5% on inventory, and the savings went straight to the bottom line. Inventory management in an ASC takes a team, though, so the key is employee engagement.

Discussion Questions
1. Consider the types of inventory waste mentioned for ASCs. What comparable wastes do you see in your organization?

Guidance: Since all businesses have to manage inventory, whether raw materials, finished goods, or indirect supplies, this can generate a discussion about different types of inventory and symptoms of excess inventory.

2. What effects does inventory waste have on you or your organization?

Guidance: This question can provide an opportunity to discuss resource management, how waste affects the environment, the community, morale, and productivity.

3. This article is about healthcare, but what do Continue reading

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