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Fulfillment Stream vs the Supply Chain
Applying lean concepts to supply chains offers "quick wins" in reducing costs, trimming inventory, and improving customer service, according to LEI faculty member and author Robert Martichenko.
The reason supply chains (or fulfillment streams) are such a target-rich environment for Lean Thinkers is due to "the lack of data, the lack of information, the lack of attention" that fulfillment streams typically suffer, said Martichenko during a podcast with Joe Dager at Business 901. "It's not from mismanagement ... it's just that [the fulfillment stream] has never been a priority." Martichenko, co-author of the just published Building a Lean Fulfillment Stream workbook, also offered insights into:
- The "eight rights" for assessing perfect order execution.
- The guiding principles for creating lean fulfillment streams.
- How to set a pacesetter point to establish a pull trigger that signals upstream replenishment.
- How "trailer sleep time" creates a small planned buffer that maintains discipline and stability of shipping and receiving schedules.
- Lean vs. six sigma in supply chain improvement.
- Tips for collaborating with outside vendors.