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Capturing the Power of Efficiency through Cloud ERP Investments


Capturing the Power of Efficiency through Cloud ERP Investments

Enterprises are standing at the threshold of a revolutionary era, poised to harness the transformative potential of cloud-based Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions. This isn’t just a technological shift; it’s a journey towards unlocking unparalleled efficiency. Join us as we embark on a voyage into the realm of Cloud ERP investments, where innovation converges with practicality to redefine the landscape of operational excellence.

Read also: Revolutionizing Fintech: The Integration of AI in ERP Systems

The Enterprise Resource Planning industry is undergoing a seismic shift from traditional on-premise setups to dynamic cloud implementations, driven by a myriad of compelling advantages. These include a reduction in total cost of ownership, streamlined implementation costs, and accelerated delivery of initial scope. Moreover, the transition promises expedited time-to-value, adoption of industry best practices, seamless upgrades ensuring business continuity, scalability, and a constant stream of innovation. Cloud ERP solutions, adorned with artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotic process automation, and analytics, are reshaping operational paradigms and propelling businesses towards unprecedented heights.

However, navigating the complexities of cloud ERP implementations demands a meticulously structured approach to ensure success, return on investment (ROI), and desired business outcomes. These implementations unfold across various phases: preparation, exploration, realization, deployment, and operation. Given the protracted nature of these endeavors, which span multiple years contingent upon factors like company size, data volume, and business segments, certain phases may overlap.

In the preparatory phase, dubbed Phase 0, an exhaustive evaluation of ERP options is undertaken, aligning with the company’s unique business processes and software capabilities. This entails a meticulous inventory of legacy systems and applications, alongside an assessment of ERP integration capabilities. Depending on program size, select tasks may be outsourced to business integrators and system integrators, while internal teams, equipped with deep business process expertise, are forged to shepherd the cloud ERP implementation journey.

Strategy diversifies depending on company scale, whether operating within a single country with a global customer base or spanning multiple nations with diverse operational facets like factories, distribution centers, and outsourced manufacturing units. Here, product integrators, endowed with ERP system mastery, assume the mantle of design authority, ensuring seamless integration and operational excellence.

The exploration phase delves into existing business processes through fit-standard workshops, engaging stakeholders across diverse business realms such as plan-to-fulfill, source-to-procure, lead-to-cash, and beyond. The aim is twofold: discerning processes amenable to standardization while identifying gaps necessitating configuration, customization, or enhancement.

As the journey progresses into the realization phase, detailed functional and technical specifications crystallize into tangible custom solutions, meticulously coded to meet defined parameters. Deployment unfolds through iterative cycles of system integration testing, data migration, and comprehensive training programs, accompanied by robust change management initiatives to prepare personnel for the transformative shift.

The pinnacle of the deployment phase culminates in the transition from legacy systems to modernized cloud ERP platforms during the much-anticipated Go-Live event. Subsequently, meticulous hyper care attention ensures system stability, addressing any lingering issues, paving the way for the operational run phase, characterized by ongoing production support.

These delineated strategies serve as a compass to unlock the true potential of productivity and efficiency through judicious technological investments.

About S V Prasad Gandhikota

Prasad Gandhikota is a Senior Business Consultant at SAP America. As part of his role, he assists some of the best-known Fortune 500 companies across North America in their digital and business transformation programs as a trusted advisor. Prasad has held various leadership roles in supply chain manufacturing functional consulting, project management, and program delivery management. He has consistently demonstrated his capability to make sound operational decisions by delivering excellence throughout the customer transformation journey, impacting the entire company.

global trade supply

Automation’s Effect On The Delivery Process: How Do You Solve Fluctuating Supply Problems By Smoothing The Flow Of Products?

Companies have developed a network of market-facing distribution centers (DCs) to meet customers’ requirements for quick, consolidated delivery. For example, in the consumer products industry, this network of warehouses will be supplied by many plants and copackers, each producing various products in different places. The lead time to produce is far longer than the customers’ expectations when they place and receive the order. The challenge is to have the right product in the market-facing DC before the customer order arrives to ensure that when the order comes, it can be shipped complete and on time. This is achieved through inventory set by a demand-planning system (also known as replenishment planning or the distribution requirements planning-DRP system). 

Read also: Automation Effect on the Delivery Process

What most people don’t realize is …

Most supply-planning systems can inflict cost and, in some cases, even position things to prevent the DC from shipping in full and on time. Here is why: Supply-planning systems don’t consider if the supply chain–carriers and warehouses–can move all the products it wants to deploy. They assume infinite:

  • carrier capacity with the same level of service and cost
  • capacity for all the facilities to ship and receive
  • space in each facility.

All these assumptions are wrong. This leads to a deployment signal that can violently change day-to-day and needs to consider cost, storage space availability, and throughput capabilities. On one lane, we saw 24 trucks deployed one day and three the next. How is any transportation manager supposed to deliver cost-effective service with that level of variability? And, when the 24 loads arrive at the receiving location, even assuming that the shipping location can pull together enough trailers and people to load them, they are faced with dilemmas: 

  • Many vans are waiting to unload.
  • How do we explain all the detention and overtime expense?
  • Which shipment should we bring in first?

The implication of leaving the products on trailers is that they may be needed for immediate customer orders. The result is often a service failure.


A simple approach may be to set some boundaries on each lane. For example, limit the lane to between five and 10 trucks. However, this needs to include the total picture. What if there are urgent customer requirements? Is it better to save a few dollars in freight while paying customer fines for poor customer service than spending extra freight dollars? 

Instead, there needs to be a tradeoff and understanding of the right balance of cost vs. service. Also, what if there is limited origin-site shipping capacity and another lane urgently needs that limited shipping capacity? In the CPG world, where moves between sites are in full truckloads, it’s essential to understand what is happening in each vehicle. So, it is challenging to ascertain whether the “urgency” of need on lane “A” is more critical than the needed products that will ship on lane “B.”


Any solution must encompass the whole network; otherwise, it is just like squeezing the proverbial balloon: fix something in one place, and it pops out somewhere else. Add to this a variety of deployment shipment lead times and the complexities of shipping only full-truckload among facilities, which means any solution must be automated. And yes, with new technology, it can be done.

Because the supply planning solution suggests a significant number of requirements–in many instances, more than can be shipped in a capacity-constrained world–what goes on with a limited number of trucks must be prioritized. This is not a trivial problem, so it must be automated. Such automation needs to build shipments to maximize payload and ensure that the most urgent product is loaded and arrives damage-free.  


Making optimized tradeoffs across the whole network generates many vital benefits: The most needed shipments are prioritized, enhancing customer service. At the same time, as cost and capacity are considered, the operational cost is minimized using a uniform set of tradeoffs. This uniformity is another benefit of automation.

Automation of the process of modifying supply-planning solutions to consider real-world constraints and optimally building loads is a major win-win-win.

  • Carriers win because they see significantly less volatility and can operate more efficiently.
  • Shippers win because they can now fulfill orders more completely and at a lower cost.
  • The environment wins as carriers travel fewer deadhead miles, and load optimization generates fewer trucks, reducing carbon emissions.

Author Bio

Thomas A. Moore is the founder and CEO of ProvisionAI, the only provider of a patented optimized replenishment transportation scheduling solution. He has founded multiple successful supply chain software companies. Working with industry leaders such as Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Nestle and Kimberly-Clark, he has led the creation of warehousing, truck loading, and network optimization solutions like AutoScheduler, AutoO2 and LevelLoad. Mr. Moore has also held line positions in manufacturing, warehousing, and trucking operations. 



Kardex Introduces FulfillX: Revolutionizing Order Fulfillment Efficiency at MODEX 2024

Kardex made waves at MODEX 2024, the premier international supply chain trade show held in Atlanta from March 11 to 14, by unveiling its groundbreaking FulfillX solution. Crafted by seasoned automation engineers, FulfillX maximizes the potential of AutoStore robotic cube storage systems, offering the swiftest order fulfillment solution per square foot available in the market.

Representing the latest advancement in automated storage and retrieval systems (ASRS), AutoStore powered by Kardex enables new systems to expedite their launch and eliminates unforeseen hurdles during deployment, often meeting or surpassing business expectations in as little as six months.

As a leading global provider of automated storage solutions and material handling systems, Kardex collaborated with cube storage pioneer AutoStore to introduce FulfillX. This innovative warehouse execution system (WES) optimizes picking, packing, and inventory processes, unleashing the full potential of AutoStore while ensuring seamless order fulfillment.

FulfillX provides users with a comprehensive real-time overview of their operations, simplifying workflow management, offering downtime estimates, and facilitating rapid deployment of enhancements, all backed by Kardex’s dedicated AutoStore support team.

Cutter & Buck Embraces AutoStore with FulfillX

With customer expectations for rapid delivery and efficient order fulfillment soaring, conventional solutions are struggling to keep pace. Kardex FulfillX for AutoStore stands out by achieving full operational capacity in as little as six months.

Renowned US clothing retailer Cutter & Buck transformed its omnichannel business by adopting AutoStore powered by Kardex FulfillX WES. Faced with surging online and in-store sales and expanding inventory levels, Cutter & Buck installed an AutoStore system with FulfillX at its Renton, WA facility.

The speed and density of AutoStore’s robotic cube solution, combined with FulfillX’s focused ‘pick to pack’ approach, perfectly suited Cutter & Buck’s fulfillment center near Seattle. By embracing automation to tackle business challenges head-on, Cutter & Buck optimized inventory and order fulfillment processes, delivering streamlined results.

Kardex Showcases Innovations at Modex 2024

Attendees at MODEX 2024 had the opportunity to witness firsthand how Kardex seamlessly integrates software expertise with AutoStore cube storage solutions to create user-friendly, highly configurable ASRS solutions.

Alongside unveiling new warehouse software developments, Kardex conducted live demonstrations of its Intuitive Pick Assistant. This innovative warehouse solution features a user-friendly picking display that projects relevant information directly onto the access opening, enhancing accuracy and ergonomics. Compatible with both Kardex Remstar and AutoStore ports, the Intuitive Pick Assistant utilizes digital tools and augmented reality to enhance picking efficiency.

Mitch Hayes, President of Kardex Solutions AutoStore, expressed enthusiasm about showcasing their automation solutions at MODEX 2024, highlighting the transformative impact of FulfillX for companies like Cutter & Buck. Matt Savoie, AutoStore Partner Sales Manager, also praised the collaboration with Kardex on FulfillX, emphasizing its role in pushing the boundaries of cube storage technology to deliver unparalleled order fulfillment efficiency.

In Conclusion

Kardex’s FulfillX solution represents a paradigm shift in order fulfillment efficiency, offering unmatched speed and agility in the rapidly evolving landscape of warehouse automation. With its successful implementation at leading retailers like Cutter & Buck, FulfillX stands as a testament to the power of innovation in revolutionizing supply chain operations.


Unveiling the Future of Tech: The Evolution and Impact of NAS Storage in 2024

In the labyrinth of technological advancements, few innovations maintain a central role in shaping our digital world like Network-Attached Storage (NAS) devices. As we navigate the high tides of data and the critical need for secure and accessible storage solutions, NAS has consistently evolved to not only meet but redefine these needs. This brings us to the captivating narrative of how NAS storage is set to metamorphosize our tomorrow. This in-depth exploration targets professionals and enthusiasts in the field, painting a vivid picture of the future NAS landscape, its potential, and the pivotal role it will play in revolutionizing information management.

NAS Storage: A Historical Tapestry of Innovation

The roots of NAS storage can be traced back several decades, with the concept itself germinating in the fertile soil of mainframe and minicomputer technologies. Over the years, NAS has burgeoned from simple file servers to powerful, dedicated appliances capable of serving multiple purposes within personal and professional settings. Along its journey, NAS has absorbed significant paradigm shifts – from the advent of RAID (redundant array of independent disks) providing fault tolerance, to the integration of various protocols including NFS (Network File System) and CIFS (Common Internet File System) for cross-platform support.

Key milestones have marked NAS’s trajectory, like the convergence of storage area network (SAN) and NAS functionalities, providing an all-encompassing storage experience. This synthesis not only simplified storage management but also bolstered NAS storage capabilities, making it an attractive proposition for businesses dealing with a multitude of data types and volumes.

The NAS of Today: A Cornerstone of Storage Solutions

As we stand on the cusp of tomorrow, it’s essential to gauge the relevance of NAS in our current technological milieu. The adoption rates have been soaring, with NAS systems embedded in the backbone of many enterprise environments, data centers, and cloud-based infrastructures.

Current NAS deployments showcase their incredible versatility, with applications ranging from simple file sharing to complex database storage. They’ve also become the go-to solution for multimedia content serving, surveillance systems, and virtualization deployments. The beauty of a NAS system lies in its adeptness at handling these diverse workloads with grace and efficiency, often at a fraction of the cost of traditional SAN solutions.

Peering into the Future: What 2024 Holds for NAS?

The forthcoming chapter for NAS storage is a tantalizing prospect for tech enthusiasts. With cutting-edge technologies like SSD caching, tiered storage, immutable and intelligent backups, the future holds a promise of even more streamlined storage management, and remarkable performance enhancements. Predicting the exact outcome is akin to navigating uncharted waters, but certain trends offer glimpses of what’s to come.

  • Emerging Storage Technologies

With the looming presence of Big Data and the Internet of Things (IoT), NAS will evolve to support these technologies effortlessly. We anticipate NAS systems becoming smarter, leveraging AI and machine learning for predictive analysis and proactive storage optimization. The integration of faster networking standards like 25G and 100G Ethernet will empower NAS to handle escalating data traffic with aplomb.

  • Modular and Scalable Designs

Future NAS devices will likely gravitate towards more modular designs, allowing businesses to tailor systems to their precise needs. The possibility of ‘hot-swappable’ components and a plug-and-play approach for upgrades will safeguard against obsolescence and ensure that NAS systems are always equipped to handle the latest storage challenges.

  • The NAS of Industries

A significant shift will occur as industries start customizing NAS solutions to meet their specific needs. Sectors like healthcare and finance will demand stringent compliance with data privacy regulations, a challenge that NAS is uniquely poised to address. Meanwhile, creative industries will look to NAS to provide not only secure storage but also real-time collaboration and content distribution platforms.

NAS Adoption: Benefits and Challenges

Embracing NAS storage in its future form will come with both ample rewards and some considerations that businesses must weigh. On the one hand, scalability and flexibility mark NAS as a robust choice, capable of growing alongside an enterprise. On the other hand, there remain imperatives such as managing hefty power demands associated with NAS deployments or the intricacies related to data privacy and security, especially in a landscape that is ever more vigilant against breaches and data misuse.

  • Scalability and Flexibility

The beauty of NAS lies in its scalability. No longer is a wholesale rip-and-replace necessary with NAS. Instead, storage can be expanded ad-hoc, with minimal disruption to existing operations. It’s this ‘grow as you go’ model that makes NAS the darling of companies, both mid-sized and enterprise-level, and in the heart of the SMB sector.

  • Security and Privacy

The concern of data integrity cannot be understated, particularly as businesses grapple with increasingly sophisticated cyber threats. Future NAS devices will need to not only secure data but also offer innovative solutions to the age-old quandary of backup and disaster recovery. Expect future NAS systems to boast robust encryption, faster and more reliable snapshot technology, and enhanced access control capabilities.


Amidst the flurry of technological innovations, NAS stands as a testament to evolution and endurance. With a plethora of advances on the horizon, from improved hardware capabilities to revolutionary software solutions, we are witnessing the nascent stages of a future NAS landscape that has the potential to transform the very essence of how we store and manage data.

For businesses yet to dip their toes into the NAS waters, the tide is turning, and the time is ripe. The era of NAS beckons, promising new horizons and transformative capabilities. As 2024 unfolds, let NAS be your trusted companion on the journey through the ever-expanding data universe.


Where Retailers & Manufacturing Partners Will Leverage The Metaverse in 2024

Retail is one of the most important areas of today’s business and commercial landscape, and while has evolved over the years it will not go away anytime soon. Technology evolution is a constant in the industry, from the invention of the first cash register in 1883 to barcodes and inventory management methods in 1974. 

And while the Internet and mobile technology have also played a major role in this evolution, today the metaverse is poised to bring even more promise to elevating the experience for consumers through greater efficiencies realized by the retailers themselves.

As the industry faces ongoing economic pressures in the coming years, it’s important for retailers to stay ahead of the curve by adopting the latest technology trends. Ultimately, the best technologies for retailers are solutions that remove all barriers to the customer experience and make shopping easier for customers. In recent years, the retail industry has adopted POS systems, CRM platforms, ERP systems, artificial intelligence (AI) systems, retail management software (RMS) and more. 

Enabling a Greater Customer Experience

Great customer experiences will continue to be the biggest customer expectation in 2024. Technology continues to do that. Customers expect a seamless, consistent and memorable shopping experience. There has been a lot of interest in metaverse-based immersive digital retail environments where consumers can shop across platforms through AR and VR. VR is the most immersive way to join the metaverse. Although the future of the metaverse is uncertain, retailers are exploring AR and VR solutions to create immersive and fun experiences that allow shoppers to shop in a simulated environment.

Major retailers today, including Hugo Boss, Walmart, and Amazon, allow visitors and shoppers to virtually try on clothing using digital representations of themselves, an extension of the earlier use of AR by furniture companies. In fact, IKEA’s app was one of the first AR apps to be released using Apple’s augmented reality technology.

How Will Retailers Use the Metaverse?

Retailers and their manufacturing partners today are leveraging the metaverse and digital twins to create greater efficiencies in their operations in several ways.

The metaverse refers to a collective virtual shared space that is created by the convergence of physical and virtual reality. It’s a digital universe where users, in this case shoppers, can interact with computer-generated environments and other users in real-time, such as a virtual retailer. 

A digital twin is a digital representation or replica of a real-world entity or system. This can include physical objects, processes, or even people – such as virtual items found in a retail environment. Digital twins are created using data from sensors, IoT devices, and other sources to simulate and monitor the behavior and performance of the corresponding real-world entity. 

For retailers, the opportunities in 2024 are plentiful. Implementing digital twins of their supply chain processes can provide real-time visibility into inventory, production, and distribution. This helps in identifying bottlenecks, optimizing logistics, and reducing lead times.

Using the metaverse for virtual prototyping and testing of products can accelerate the design and development process. This can lead to faster time-to-market and reduced costs associated with physical prototypes.

Retailers today are identifying possibilities to create virtual stores and showrooms in the metaverse, allowing customers to explore and interact with products in a virtual environment. This enhances the customer experience and can drive online sales.

Along with their manufacturing partners, they are looking into using the metaverse for employee training simulations, especially in manufacturing where complex machinery is involved. This can improve employee skills and safety. This also enables opportunities to create virtual workspaces for teams spread across different locations. This promotes collaboration and communication among team members.

Marketing teams can also benefit from using data from customer interactions in the metaverse to personalize recommendations and marketing strategies, improving customer engagement and loyalty.

Furthermore, the companies can leverage digital twins to remotely monitor and control manufacturing processes and equipment. This is especially beneficial in situations where physical presence may be challenging.

The Importance of 3D & AI in Immersive Mixed Reality

One of the key requirements for metaverse and mixed reality applications is to precisely overlay on an object its model or the digital twin. This helps in providing work instructions for assembly and training, and to catch any errors or defects in manufacturing. The user can also track the object(s) and adjust the rendering as the work progresses. 

Most on-device object tracking systems use 2D image and/or marker-based tracking. This severely limits overlay accuracy in 3D because 2D tracking cannot estimate depth with high accuracy, and consequently the scale, and the pose. This means even though users can get what looks like a good match when looking from one angle and/or position, the overlay loses alignment as the user moves around in 6DOF. 

Retail and manufacturing users are overcoming these challenges by leveraging 3D environments and AI technology into their immersive mixed reality design/build projects.

Deep learning-based 3D AI allows users to identify 3D objects of arbitrary shape and size in various orientations with high accuracy in the 3D space. This approach is scalable with any arbitrary shape and is amenable to use in enterprise use cases requiring rendering overlay of complex 3D models and digital twins with their real-world counterparts. 

Why Working in a Cloud Environment is Crucial

Enterprises and manufacturers should be cautious in how they design and deploy these technologies, because there is a great difference in the platform they are built on and maximized for use.

Even though technologies like AR/VR have been in use for several years, many manufacturers have deployed virtual solutions on the devices, where all the technology data is stored locally, severely limiting the performance and scale needed today’s virtual designs. It limits the ability to conduct knowledge sharing between organizations that can be critical when designing new products and understanding the best way for virtual buildouts.

Manufacturers today are overcoming these limitations by leveraging cloud-based (or remote server based) AR/VR platforms powered by distributed cloud architecture and 3D vision-based AI. These cloud platforms provide the desired performance and scalability to drive innovation in the industry at speed and scale.

By integrating these technologies, retailers and manufacturers can streamline their operations, reduce costs, and enhance both customer and employee experiences in the rapidly evolving landscape of the metaverse.

About The Author

Dijam Panigrahi is Co-founder and COO of GridRaster Inc., a leading provider of cloud-based AR/VR platforms that power compelling high-quality AR/VR experiences on mobile devices for enterprises. For more information, please visit



B&H Worldwide and Advantage Future Tech Forge Strategic Partnership in USA Aerospace Logistics

B&H Worldwide, a renowned leader in aerospace logistics, has inked a three-year exclusivity deal with Advantage Future Tech (AFT) to oversee its inventory and shipping services across the United States. Under this agreement, the companies will also engage in joint marketing endeavors to bolster the visibility and efficacy of their offerings.

Advantage Future Tech, serving as a global exclusive distributor of OEM turbine engine parts, avionics, satellite connectivity, and UAS/UAM product portfolios across all aftermarket segments, joins forces with B&H Worldwide to optimize their operations in the USA.

B&H Worldwide will manage AFT’s inventory within its Miami and Los Angeles facilities, forwarding shipments nationwide. With AS9120B certified facilities on both the east and west coasts, B&H will conduct quality checks on inbound and outbound shipments using their bespoke FirstTRAC WMS and tracking systems. The collaboration aims to ensure exceptional service standards for customers, with operations running around the clock to optimize AOG (Aircraft on Ground) response times.

Stuart Allen, Group CEO of B&H Worldwide, expresses optimism about the partnership, highlighting the potential synergies between two specialized organizations in the aerospace logistics field. He emphasizes the shared goal of delivering outstanding service to customers amidst Advantage Future Tech’s expansion in the Americas.

Boyd Ng, Senior Manager of Advantage Future Tech, lauds the partnership as a significant milestone for the company. He anticipates that combining their expertise with B&H’s capabilities will enhance operational efficiency and elevate the overall customer experience. Together, the companies aim to achieve new heights in the aerospace and aviation logistics industry.


Innovative Automaker Adopts VR for Collaborative Design Efforts 

The past few years have been challenging for automakers and the fleets that rely on them. Supply chain troubles and rapidly shifting consumer demands have led to price volatility and extensive backlogs. However, amid all these obstacles, GM was able to put out the BrightDrop Zevo 600 in record time.

Going from idea to full-scale production in under two years would be impressive in any context. Doing so at the peak of pandemic-era disruption is staggering. The only way it was possible was through extensive digitization and immersive collaboration — a practice that may rewrite the future of the transportation industry.

The Challenge of Modern Industry

To fully grasp the benefits of immersive collaboration, businesses must first recognize where conventional approaches fall short. It starts with the industry’s labor challenges. Manufacturing could have 2.1 million unfilled positions by 2030, and logistics and supply chain operations face similar shortages. As current workers retire and fewer enter the sector to take their place, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to remain productive — at least by traditional means.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, many office jobs transitioned to remote work, but industrial workplaces couldn’t, leading to long periods of lost productivity. Now, home-based jobs are becoming the norm in some sectors, attracting more young workers and worsening the labor crisis in industries where that’s not an option.

As these labor challenges persist, output demands are rising. Manufacturers must produce higher-quality products in less time at lower costs to remain competitive in an increasingly agile market. Fleets must support that growth and expand to deliver more in shorter time frames. Achieving that is challenging enough on its own, much less amid dwindling in-person workforces.

The pandemic also revealed how fragile conventional supply chains are. Companies must adapt to new challenges at a moment’s notice, but standard manufacturing and supply chain practices don’t support that kind of agility.

The Record-Breaking BrightDrop Zevo 600

Despite all these challenges, GM managed to put out its fastest vehicle to market in company history. Engineers began designing the BrightDrop Zevo 600 in early 2020, and despite shutdowns they released it 20 months later. The secret to this project’s success was a quick pivot to immersive virtual collaboration technologies.

Virtual reality (VR) was at the center of this technological shift. Engineers used VR to work together in immersive digital environments, replicating in-person cooperation despite being miles apart.

The VR system BrightDrop used is more advanced than a simple headset. It also features tracking sensors called lighthouses and pucks that give users a more grounded sense of position and direction in the virtual world. These sensors also prevent collisions with physical objects. VR-capable design software and gaming computers to run it completed the system.

Through these technologies, BrightDrop employees were able to collaborate from their homes. VR provided the convenience of videoconferencing with the ability to interact with the same digital elements as physical objects in conventional workflows. 

What the Zevo 600 Means for Transportation

The Zevo 600’s development showcases immersive collaboration’s potential for industrial sectors. While VR meetups were a health necessity at COVID’s peak, they’re valuable time-savers under normal circumstances. Employees can work together without wasting time traveling to the same physical location.

Because VR is immersive, it’s easier to remain productive and ensure virtual models more closely reflect their real-world counterparts — whether they represent specific products or their larger supply chains. This advantage further shortens turnaround times by minimizing physical iterations and avoiding time waste other digital solutions may foster.

As these solutions speed up auto manufacturing, they open new possibilities for the fleets relying on these providers. New vehicles offering needed improvements in efficiency, reliability or sustainability will come out faster, enabling rapid fleet expansion. Shorter lead times can also reduce prices, further supporting logistics growth.

VR and similar technologies could also address logistics companies’ labor problems. Companies can hire employees from other cities, states and countries when people no longer have to be in the same place to work together. The labor pool broadens dramatically as a result.

VR-powered remote work doesn’t necessarily apply to drivers but can ease the burden on logistics businesses’ office staff. It also opens the door for remote onboarding and early training for drivers or mechanics, even if they must move to work in person eventually.

Similarly, some companies have started using VR to train mechanics and other personnel. Adopting this approach could let supply chain organizations bring new hires up to speed faster. Immersive digital environments are better teachers than noninteractive presentations but are safer than real-world workplaces and support remote hiring.

This digital collaboration also has benefits outside of speed and labor issues. Because it lets automakers create more in-depth designs in less time, they don’t have to sacrifice efficiency for high-quality products. That’s good news for transport companies seeking to grow their fleets while capitalizing on newer technologies for driver comfort or safety.

Despite its rapid development, the Zevo 600 brought several delivery-focused innovations to its design — including larger cupholders and a cabin that’s easier to enter and exit. Other automakers can use the same approach to equip their vehicles with in-demand features and functionality without long lead times. As a result, they can meet changing market needs faster, helping transportation and logistics become more agile.

Bringing Immersive Collaboration to New Applications

The BrightDrop Zevo 600 isn’t the only product to benefit from this technology, and it certainly won’t be the last. Maserati used a similar approach to design a car in eight weeks, aiming to have a working prototype in under two years. Computer-aided design software and 3D printing accelerated the process. As this design philosophy becomes standard, fleets can expect new vehicles to roll out faster, enabling quicker expansion or EV adoption.

Immersive, tech-centric collaboration has applications outside of automotive design. VR and its adjacent technologies enable real-time remote collaboration in workflows where simple video meetings aren’t sufficient. Logistics companies can use these solutions to connect maintenance professionals in different areas, learn to work with new equipment faster or collaborate on virtual models of supply chains for more effective planning.


This technology also has promise for fleets’ workforce and HR operations. Managers can train workers in VR so they learn important safety steps before handling potentially hazardous equipment in the real world. These immersive environments can shorten onboarding times to support faster expansion and higher productivity.

VR collaboration lets maintenance personnel train on virtual representations of different vehicles without needing the real thing. That way, fleets can prepare to work with newer equipment in less time. This advantage will become more important as autonomous driving and EVs transform logistics operations.

Supply chain management can benefit from immersive collaboration, too. VR meetings make communicating with global partners easier, informing faster, more effective operational decisions. Faster, more in-depth communication will become increasingly important as workforce struggles continue and demands for quick shipping rise.

Immersive Collaboration Is the Future of Transportation

BrightDrops’ Zevo 600 proves that digitization’s benefits for the auto industry are more than just theoretical. It enables the changes the sector needs to compete in a fast-paced, tech-centric world. While this shift is starting in manufacturing, it has ripple effects across the transportation and logistics industry.

New technologies will become essential in remaining productive as supply chain and logistics companies face mounting challenges. Immersive collaboration is the first and one of the most important steps in that goal. Now that companies are starting to see massive real-world benefits from this innovation, it won’t be long before it transforms the industry.


The Evolution of Just-in-Time (JIT) Manufacturing in the Modern Era

The evolution of Just-in-Time (JIT) Manufacturing has been nothing short of remarkable. Once confined to its Japanese origins, it has become a global force shaping how industries approach production, supply chains, and operational efficiency. Therefore, let’s explore the fascinating journey of Just-in-Time Manufacturing’s development, its applications across various sectors, and its promising future trends!

Historical roots of JIT

The historical roots of Just-in-Time (JIT) manufacturing can be traced back to post-World War II Japan, a country striving to rebuild its economy. Toyota, a pioneering automaker, played an important role in shaping these methods. They introduced the Toyota Production System (TPS), emphasizing efficient resource utilization and minimizing waste. Key elements, like Kanban systems and continuous improvement (Kaizen), stemmed from TPS. 

This approach allowed Toyota to streamline production, reduce excess inventory, and respond swiftly to customer demands. The success of TPS ignited a global manufacturing revolution. Then, these principles transcended borders and were adopted worldwide, revolutionizing industries far beyond automotive manufacturing. Today, Just-in-Time remains a cornerstone of efficient production, emphasizing lean practices, reduced lead times, and improved quality control. 

Technology’s impact on JIT

The impact of technology on the evolution of Just-in-Time (JIT) manufacturing has been nothing short of transformative. Nowadays, technology serves as a cornerstone, enhancing the precision and efficiency of these practices. Automation and advanced software systems play a big role in production processes, allowing for real-time monitoring of inventory levels, demand forecasting, and supply chain management. Therefore, this newfound visibility empowers manufacturers to make data-driven decisions and respond swiftly to changes in customer preferences. 

At the same time, integrating robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) streamlines repetitive tasks, reducing human error and improving production accuracy. Finally, technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT) enable interconnected machinery and smart sensors to communicate seamlessly, further optimizing operations. 

Globalization and supply chain complexity

In today’s globalized world, managing your supply chain well, no matter what, has become an imperative for businesses. The complexities that globalization introduces can pose significant challenges. Supply chains now span continents, cultures, and time zones, making it essential for companies to adapt and optimize their operations. 

Navigating the intricate web of international regulations, diverse market demands, and volatile geopolitical landscapes can be daunting. Yet, a well-executed supply chain strategy encompassing risk management, diversification, and agile practices can mitigate these challenges. That’s where Just-In-Time Manufacturing comes in. 

Sustainability and JIT

Sustainability and the evolution of Just-in-Time (JIT) manufacturing are now intertwined more than ever, especially with the green logistics taking center stage. As the world grapples with environmental concerns, these practices are evolving to embrace eco-friendly principles. Green logistics in this field focuses on minimizing the environmental impact of supply chains by reducing waste, optimizing transportation routes, and adopting eco-conscious packaging materials. 

Companies increasingly integrate renewable energy sources and environmentally friendly technologies into their production processes. Therefore, this shift aligns with ethical and regulatory standards and appeals to eco-conscious consumers. Sustainability in Just-in-Time Manufacturing reduces the carbon footprint and enhances cost-efficiency by trimming waste and energy consumption. Therefore, as the world moves toward a more sustainable future, this leads the way by demonstrating that eco-friendly practices can go hand in hand with lean and efficient production processes.

Just-in-Time in various industries

Just-in-Time principles have proven their versatility by making significant impacts across diverse industries. In automotive manufacturing, Just-in-Time revolutionized production by reducing inventory costs and improving production efficiency. The electronics industry embraced Just-in-Time to meet fast-paced technological changes, minimizing obsolete stock. In the food and beverage sector, Just-in-Time ensures freshness and minimizes food waste. It has enabled companies to adapt to consumer demands rapidly! 

This approach isn’t confined to these sectors alone, as it’s found its place in aerospace, healthcare, and beyond. By aligning production closely with demand, Just-in-Time brings efficiency and flexibility to various industries, demonstrating its universal relevance and adaptability. 

Inventory management in JIT

Effective inventory management is a linchpin of Just-in-Time manufacturing. Its core principle is maintaining minimal inventory levels while ensuring materials arrive when needed. Traditional inventory management strategies involved holding substantial stockpiles to buffer against uncertainty. However, JIT shifts this paradigm by emphasizing a ‘pull’ system, where production is triggered by customer demand. That reduces carrying costs, minimizes waste, and enhances cash flow. JIT leverages data analytics to forecast demand accurately, optimizing inventory levels. 

In addition, technologies like Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) and the Internet of Things (IoT) enable real-time tracking and monitoring, ensuring inventory accuracy. Still, Just-In-Time isn’t just about cutting inventory; it’s about managing it strategically to balance operational efficiency and customer satisfaction. Effective inventory management achieved in this way plays a role in maintaining this equilibrium, making it a cornerstone of modern manufacturing practices.

JIT challenges and solutions

Just-in-Time manufacturing, while beneficial, isn’t without its challenges. One common hurdle is supply chain disruptions, often due to natural disasters, transportation issues, or supplier problems. Its reliance on timely deliveries makes it vulnerable to these disruptions. Fortunately, there are solutions, such as diversifying suppliers and building resilient supply chains. 

Another challenge is maintaining quality standards when reducing inventory buffers. That can lead to quality issues if not managed carefully. The solution here lies in rigorous quality control processes and continuous improvement efforts. JIT also demands a high level of synchronization between various production stages, which can be a logistical puzzle. 

Advanced planning and scheduling systems help address this challenge. While JIT comes with its set of obstacles, with strategic planning, adaptation, and the right tools, these challenges can be overcome, resulting in a streamlined and efficient production process!

COVID-19 and resilience in JIT

The COVID-19 pandemic served as a significant stress test for Just-in-Time manufacturing. Supply chain disruptions were widespread, and Just-in-Time systems faced unprecedented challenges. However, the crisis also highlighted the importance of resilience in JIT. Companies adapted by diversifying suppliers, increasing safety stock, and investing in digital technologies to enhance supply chain visibility. They also implemented risk management strategies to mitigate future disruptions! 

While JIT’s core philosophy of reducing waste and maintaining lean operations remained intact, the pandemic emphasized the need for flexibility and adaptability. COVID-19 underscored that JIT systems can thrive even in the face of unexpected disruptions when coupled with a robust resilience strategy. This experience has reshaped JIT practices, making them better equipped to handle future uncertainties while still delivering efficiency and cost savings.

Future trends in JIT manufacturing

The future of the evolution of Just-in-Time (JIT) manufacturing holds exciting prospects as technology continues to evolve. Emerging trends suggest that JIT will be more data-driven and interconnected than ever before. Companies embrace predictive analytics and AI to optimize production schedules, reduce lead times, and enhance supply chain visibility. Sustainability will also be crucial, with eco-conscious Just-in-Time practices gaining momentum. 

Also, integrating blockchain technology can enhance transparency and traceability within supply chains, ensuring product authenticity and reducing fraud risks. Businesses need to adapt to these future trends to stay competitive. Investing in digital tools and fostering a culture of innovation will be key to improving your logistics approach in the dynamic landscape of JIT manufacturing, ensuring efficiency, responsiveness, and sustainability.

A better approach to manufacturing

With our exploration of the evolution of Just-in-Time (JIT) Manufacturing in the modern era, it’s clear that things are far from over. This dynamic approach to production continues to adapt and thrive, meeting the ever-changing demands of industries worldwide. In an era marked by technological advancements and the growing importance of sustainability, this type of manufacturing stands as a testament to the power of innovation, efficiency, and adaptability in shaping the manufacturing landscape!

Author Bio

Veronica Thistlewood is a seasoned logistics expert at Lippincott Van Lines who is passionate about optimizing supply chain networks and enhancing operational efficiency. With years of experience in the field, she brings a unique blend of creativity and precision to every logistics challenge, ensuring seamless solutions that drive success.


Smart Grid Sensor Market is projected to reach a valuation of US$ 2.39 billion by 2033

According to a recently released report from Fact.MR, a leading provider of market research and competitive intelligence, the global Smart Grid Sensor Market has achieved a scale of US$ 587.3 million in 2023 and is anticipated to witness substantial growth at a noteworthy CAGR of 15.1% throughout the forecast period (2023 to 2033).

Smart grid sensors play a pivotal role in reshaping the energy landscape towards a sustainable future. They are integral in the modernization of electrical grids and addressing the challenges posed by a dynamic energy environment. These innovative sensors deliver real-time data crucial for optimizing energy distribution, integrating renewable energy sources, and improving grid reliability.

As the world increasingly focuses on sustainability and environmental stewardship, smart grid sensors are propelling the shift towards a cleaner and more efficient electrical grid. They contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions, supporting a resilient energy future. Smart grid sensors actively monitor and control grid operations, enable demand response, and facilitate the integration of electric vehicles. Thus, they emerge as indispensable components in establishing a sustainable, reliable, and environmentally responsible energy infrastructure for the years ahead.

Key Takeaways from Market Study

·         The global smart grid sensor market is projected to expand at 15.1% CAGR and reach US$ 1.87 billion by 2033-end.

·         The market was valued at US$ 520.4 million in 2022, after expanding at a CAGR of 11.3% from 2018 to 2022.

·         Sales of voltage/temperature smart grid sensors are projected to increase at a CAGR of 17.3% through 2033.

·         The United States market for smart grid sensors is predicted to expand at a CAGR of 17% during the forecast period (2023 to 2033).

Market Growth Developments

Market players are adopting various strategies to strengthen their position and capitalize on emerging opportunities. Some of these strategies include identifying the target, advancing the technology, expanding their innovation, and increasing environmental sustainability, production, procurement, and supply chain. Establishing strategic partnerships with other industry stakeholders to access new markets and distribution channels.

Companies are also investing in marketing and branding efforts to raise awareness about the benefits of their products and differentiate themselves from competitors. By pursuing these growth strategies, market players aim to foster sustainable growth, gain a competitive edge, and meet market demands.

In 2023, the United States market is valued at US$ 128.5 million and is anticipated to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.9% from 2023 to 2033.

Smart grid sensors offer a multitude of advantages in the pursuit of carbon-neutral electricity in the United States. They facilitate the integration of renewable energy sources by monitoring their output and ensuring efficient distribution. These sensors provide real-time data on grid performance and electricity consumption, empowering decision-makers to make informed choices and reduce energy wastage.

Smart grid sensors also play a pivotal role in supporting demand-response programs, incentivizing the use of cleaner energy sources, and bolstering grid resilience. Therefore, investments in smart grid sensors, alongside other clean energy technologies and policies, are imperative for the United States to attain its goal of achieving carbon pollution-free electricity.

More Valuable Insights on Offer

Fact.MR, in its new offering, presents an unbiased analysis of the smart grid sensor market, presenting historical market data for 2018 to 2022 and forecast statistics for 2023 to 2033.

The study reveals essential insights based on sensor (voltage/temperature smart grid sensors, outage detection smart grid sensors, transformer monitoring smart grid sensors, dynamic line rating smart grid sensors, others), application (smart energy meters, SCADA, advanced metering infrastructure [AMI], others), and end user (public grid operators, private grid operators), across major regions of the world (North America, Latin America, East Asia, South Asia & Pacific, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East & Africa).


Revolutionizing Fintech: The Integration of AI in ERP Systems

The integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) into fintech solutions has produced significant shifts in the way organizations run their businesses. The automation of certain tasks enables an unprecedented level of efficiency and innovation, and FinTech solutions across the market have been using AI to place themselves as the best of the best. Although AI is not necessarily a new thing, this new wave of user centric AI has taken the digital world by storm, and has changed the sector for good. 

ERPs at the heart of FinTech

Fintech’s journey began with the digitalization of financial services, evolving from basic online banking services to complex financial management solutions. ERP systems are at the heart of FinTech solutions, and enable organizations to automate their processes and streamline their operations. ERP systems have transitioned from rudimentary inventory management software to sophisticated platforms that integrate all facets of a business. Cloud based ERP solutions can now offer CRM, project management, E-commerce, planning and budgeting, warehouse management, supply chain management and more. This improvement in the depth and breadth of features has set the stage for AI’s integration, offering opportunities to harness data analytics and automation in new and powerful ways.

A slow but steady integration of AI

Now many people may think AI is a brand new thing, but this isn’t the case. AI has actually been involved in Fintech solutions since the 80s. It has been used to enable predictive analytics for better decision-making, risk management through advanced algorithms, and personalized financial services tailored to individual customer needs. AI’s capability to process large volumes of data and extract actionable insights has revolutionized how financial services operate.

AI in ERP solutions

However, the new wave of easily accessible AI, such as chat GPT, is being further integrated into FinTech and ERP solutions. Oracle NetSuite ERP is rolling out a new AI feature, that is going to allow it’s users to automate activities such as writing collection letters, and producing context driven email responses. Evan Goldberg, Founder and EVP of Oracle NetSuite, said “We’ve been building AI into NetSuite for several years to help our customers be more productive and successful. Recent breakthroughs in AI create the opportunity for a quantum leap in doing more with less”. As Evan suggests, these advancements are going to significantly reduce the time it takes to accomplish certain activities, and will free up capacity for tasks that have a bigger impact on organizations. 

ERP powerhouse SAP are also integrating AI into their solution, with their new product “Rise with SAP”. They have used their extensive industry specific data and deep process knowledge to build a product that is going to help it’s customers to further streamline their processes and be rid of time-consuming, repetitive tasks. 

The dangers of AI

Despite its advantages, integrating AI into FinTech solutions, such as ERPs, is not without challenges. Concerns around data security and privacy are always a big one, given the sensitive nature of financial data. This is an area that FinTech solutions must double down on, as financial data and security is of the upmost importance to customers. 

There are also ethical considerations that come with AI, such as accessing data without consent. This is an area that will likely develop as time goes on, and it’s likely that tools will be created that will help with blocking all the different AI bots from accessing online content. Finally, the overall safety of AI is always an ongoing concern. Whether or not AI bots will become like humans, take over our world and keep us all captive is one thing. But there is a real fear by many that AI could become too intelligent and start rejecting commands, the consequences of which is yet to be known.  


Overall, the integration of AI into fintech, particularly ERP systems, is a game-changer for businesses. It offers unprecedented levels of efficiency, accuracy, and insights. As this technology continues to evolve, it will play a crucial role in shaping the future of financial services. Embracing AI in ERP systems is not just a step towards technological advancement but a stride towards redefining how businesses operate in the digital age.