UPSNav: Save a minute, save $14 million

UPSNav: Save a minute, save $14 million

January 14, 2019

Known for its focus on efficiency, UPS is always on the lookout for ways to save time and offer better service to its customers.

UPSNav, due to be in place by 2020, updates United Parcel Service’s previous route optimization system for its 60,000 drivers.  The new system will recalculate routes all day long, taking traffic, remaining deliveries, and pick-up requests into account.

UPS drivers make about 125 stops per day, so shaving even seconds off each stop can result in huge savings.  For example, saving drivers one minute per day multiplies to $14.5 million in labor cost savings per year.

UPS competes in a tough market with FedEx, the U.S. Postal Service, and Amazon.  Figuring out how to make the “last mile delivery” as cost-effective as possible is a constant challenge, especially in suburban and rural areas where the stops are further apart.


Video Spotlight: A look at UPS Orion, the current UPS navigation system


This post is based on the Reuters article, New UPS navigation tool aims to save time and money with each turn, by Lisa Baertlein, December 4, 2018; and the YouTube video, UPS Orion, by lolrus15, September 6, 2017. Image source: Continue reading

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Can Automation Save the Bangladeshi Garment Industry?

Can Automation Save the Bangladeshi Garment Industry?

December 10, 2018

Second only to China in the world’s clothing export markets, Bangladesh focuses on efficiency in its textile factories to defend its market in the face of increased competition from Cambodia, Vietnam, Myanmar, and some African countries.

Automation helps Bangladesh modernize apparel factories, with two workers able to do the work of 15.  These improvements help offset increasing costs, as the government mandates a 51% wage hike, and Western brands demand better fire and safety standards in the factories.


Video Spotlight: How Automation Impacts Garment Workers in Bangladesh


This post is based on the Nikkei Asian Review article, Bangladesh fights for future of its garment industry, by Mitsuru Obe, November 4, 2018, and the YouTube video, How Automation Impacts Garment Workers in Bangladesh, by Electric Runway, June 7, 2018. Image source: igor kisselev / Alamy Stock Photo.

Discussion Questions:

1. How does the cost of production in Bangladesh compare to that of other countries, and how does it impact the viability of its apparel industry?

Guidance: Currently, labor costs in Bangladesh remain low by global standards, with an average monthly wage of $101, compared to $518 in China.  However, some African countries like Ethiopia have average Continue reading

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