MHI Solutions

Sustainability

Building Supply Chain Sustainability

shutterstock_106124045_locopy2Although sustainability has been a buzzword throughout supply chains since the dawn of the new millennium, the push to implement greener facility designs and practices has ebbed and flowed.

The reason, says Steve Osburn, director in Kurt Salmon Associates’ supply chain practice, is that—for the majority of companies—when they consider going green, most want to know what amount of green, as in dollars, is in it for them.

“For a lot of operations, when they look to take consumption out of their supply chains, the primary driver is saving money,” he says. “If sustainability is a byproduct of that, then great.”

That’s not to say, however, that a few businesses—among them UPS, Nike and REI—haven’t prioritized taking a more sustainable approach in their facilities and operations.

“Certain companies, particularly those for whom sustainability is an integral part of their corporate culture, are absolutely willing to take on those initiatives,” Osburn says, “even when the payback is longer than five years.”

Further, says John Patelski, an independent consultant on sustainable supply chain design practices, companies’ interest in environmental responsibility has grown in correlation with the growth in millennial spending habits.

“Millennials are looking at sustainability as an important component in the products they purchase and the companies they do business with. As they are transacting business, they want to do it with companies that are sustainable,” he says.

By Carol Miller, MHI Vice President of Marketing and Communications

Click here to read the full article.


This issue of MHI Solutions tackles the important topic of digital technologies in the supply chain industry, especially as it relates the transportation and logistics. Transportation plays a central role in supply chains, whether they are local or global enterprises. And just like the overall supply chain, transportation is facing a digital revolution including new solutions for tracking road, rail, sea and air freight and parcel transportation. These digital technologies are disrupting the industry, but they are also providing im-portant new solutions for transportation inefficiencies and urban logistics challenges. They are also creating new digital business models that enhance transparency and sustainability and contribute to end-to-end supply chain visibility. Like the innovations impacting supply chains, these trends are being driven by the growth of e-commerce and the consumers’ never-ending need for better, faster and cheaper. Ignoring them is done at your own peril.

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