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SOLUTIONS COMMUNITY: Focusing on Solutions for MHI Members, User Community

For MHI’s Solutions Community, there were no lazy days of summer, as the group continued its progress on several key projects. Chief among them is a partnership with the College Industry Council on Material Handling Education (CICMHE) aimed at producing a series of white papers on important topics such as cybersecurity and Big Data for MHI members and the user community.

* By John Paxton, COO, MHI *

CICMHE, founded in 1952, is composed of 16 college and university educators, along with representatives from material handling equipment manufacturers, all focused on material handling education. Work on these papers is in the early stages, but the goal is to release them in the fourth quarter of 2018. The white papers will build upon the MHI Solutions Community’s informative presentations at the MHI Annual Conference last October, the spring meeting in March and MODEX last April.

At the Annual Conference, the Solutions Community sponsored two 90-minute roundtable discussions entitled “Implementing Industry 4.0” and “Exploring Sustainability,” and at the spring meeting, the group organized the first in a series of panel discussions for C Suite executives, this one focusing on the new federal tax laws and how chief financial officers can best prioritize capital expenditures. At MODEX, the group’s presentation was entitled “Top 10 Tips for Implementing a Fulfillment Warehouse,” with four members of the Solutions Community offering best practices for optimizing operations.

When the MHI Solutions Community was created in the spring of 2017, it represented the consolidation of the association’s Automated Solutions Group, Information Systems Solutions Group and Order Fulfillment Solutions Group into a single entity focused on engaging the user community and addressing problems affecting the material-handling and supply-chain industry. The MHI Solutions Community provides a centralized place to address the complex challenges of the user community instead of multiple groups working independently.
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Emerging technologies such as IIoT, robotics and artificial intelligence provide exciting opportunities for supply chains. They also mean an exponential growth in the amount of data these supply chains generate. When properly utilized, this data can provide crucial information to improve efficiency, reduce costs, enhance transparency and customer service. But it comes with risk. The more digitized a supply chain becomes, the more it is at risk of cyberattack. Hackers are constantly finding new ways create data breaches they can exploit. The reality that most supply chains require third-party suppliers down the chain only heightens this threat. No matter the scale of your supply chain, it is essential to have solid cybersecurity processes in place to manage and mitigate the growing risk of cyberattack. That’s what this issue of MHI Solutions is all about, from cybersecurity threats in an IIoT world to dark data to the human factor in cybersecurity to blockchain as a potential solution.
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