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Open during the COVID-19 pandemic: What should distribution centers focus on?

The chaos and disruption from the COVID-19 outbreak is slowly moving toward recovery for businesses. Like most enterprises, fulfillment and distribution centers will not be able to simply “flip a switch” and return to normal operations. The complexity is even greater for networks that span multiple states or countries. Reopening will require a rigorous methodology backed by the smart use of data and analytics—and creative thinking about how to leverage existing technology in the workplace.

Reopening will require a rigorous methodology backed by the smart use of data and analytics—and creative thinking about how to leverage existing technology in the workplace

Reopen facilities with employee safety as a top priority

For facilities, the first step will likely involve sanitizing and otherwise prepping the workspace. Securing sanitation, personal protective equipment (PPE), and other gear to enable reopening might be a new operational category for many companies. In addition to material lead time, be sure to build in time for process development and learnings as well.

Restructure the business to address new needs

Reopening should involve closely examining the skills matrix of your staff against new protocol and operational needs. This may lead to reassigning roles and responsibilities. For example, with distancing protocols now essential, who will define, adjust, and monitor compliance in your operations?

A new operational paradigm

Even after facilities reopen, they won’t likely return to “normal” operations for quite a while. Organizations will likely have to manage scores of new procedures around workforce behavior, floor operations, and supplier/customer interactions. Many of these new ways of working will be site- or company-specific, and may vary by state initially, but the following three points are helpful to keep in mind:

Socially distance and protect workers in a factory or on a warehouse floor and in non-work areas such as break rooms. Technology and creative thinking can play key roles here. Consider staggering the elements of a workday (start time, lunch, breaks, etc.) to minimize the congregation of associates.

If you use a large transportation fleet, you’ll need to secure capacity and reliability. This might include establishing or reviewing contracts with a common set of carriers. Likewise, you may need to re-examine capacity plans and routes due to new driver protocols that could impact teaming, relays, and cross-dock activities, among others.

Looking ahead

Following the initial COVID-19 outbreak in early 2020, factories in the region are working towards getting back to business. NPR reported in early March that Chinese factories are reopening and resuming production, with eight provinces downgrading their emergency levels to allow for more mobility for citizens and workers. While black swan events like coronavirus can’t always be predicted, understanding supply chain risks and opportunities gives organizations more transparency to plan ahead while maintaining customer experiences in the face of crisis.

New versions of established tools will play a critical role in helping supply chain managers have an ongoing view of potential risks and provide framework to help take corrective actions to better serve their customers and provide a safe environment for their workforce.

Reopen facilities with employee safety as a top priority

For facilities, the first step will likely involve sanitizing and otherwise prepping the workspace. Securing sanitation, personal protective equipment (PPE), and other gear to enable reopening might be a new operational category for many companies. In addition to material lead time, be sure to build in time for process development and learnings as well.

The developments of transport technology

Time 30/01/2020 at 22:17

Hanoi in autumn- Hanoi with blue sky, bright yellow sun light and cool dried winds. The weather naturally makes one a little bright and breezy. Such a weather can be seen only at the end of an autumn and at the beginning of a winter. When one is still young, it is a spur; when one gets old, it brings back memories to think of.

Overcoming difficulties to finish the task on schedule

Time 07/05/2020 at 08:44

“There is no story that the investor suspended construction of Trung Luong - My Thuan Expressway”. That was the affirmation of Mr. Ho Minh Hoang, Chairman of Trung Luong - My Thuan BOT Co. before the suspension of the Management Board.

Deputy Editor-in-chief appointed

Time 03/08/2020 at 14:15

On August 3rd, 2020 at Vietnam Logistics Review Magazine (VLR) office, being authorized by the Vietnam Logistics Business Association (VLA)- the governing body of VLR, PhD. Le Van Hy- VLR’s Editor-in-chief handed a decision to appoint Ms. Pham Kim Lien to the position of Deputy Editor-in-chief in accordance to the Decision no.01/VLA-QĐ by VLA President signed on August 1st, 2020.

Navy Hotel Group: An outstanding experience of space and service

Time 16/09/2020 at 09:27

With various forms of hotels and resorts as coastal resort hotels, airport hotels, and city hotels. The chain of Navy Hotel Group has currently been found in popular tourism locations as Dalat, Cam Ranh and Danang. It is expected that a city in HCMC and a coastal hotel resort in Nha Trang will be open at the beginning of 2021.

Artisan Nguyen Thi Dung: Pottery a full pasion

Time 16/09/2020 at 08:51

In 20 years working with pottery, with all ups and downs in life, it is the passion that helps Nguyen Thi Dung keep her inspiration and creation. Dung always thinks how to keep pottery art away from dying and how to make it go further to local and foreign pottery art lovers.

DKSH achieved solid results in the unprecedented 2020

Time 15/09/2020 at 14:54

At Group level, in the first six months of 2020, DKSH reported solid results in these unprecedented times. Across markets, DKSH continued to reliably supply products and played a critical role in responding to the pandemic. In Vietnam, DKSH also performed remarkably well, attaining slightly better levels than in 2019. This is a great achievement and a testament to our robust business model and strongly committed workforce, who have really stepped up in these challenging circumstances.