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Q4 2019, MHI Solutions: Sustainability—On the Fast Track

CEO UPDATE: A New Era of Supply Chain Sustainability Is Rising

* By George W. Prest, Chief Executive Officer, MHI  *

Consumers are becoming more interested in making environmentally friendly decisions when it comes to their buying habits and the brands to which they are loyal. Studies have found anywhere from 80-85% of consumers are more likely to buy from a company with a reputation for sustainability than from a neutral company, if their prices are equal.

Leading firms are tapping into this mindset by building more sustainability, and transparency, into their supply chains. They know that more sustainable operations will drive long-term brand loyalty and competitive advantage while having bottom line impacts on efficiency and profitability.

In today’s hyper-competitive marketplace, where firms are constantly looking for new ways to attract and retain consumers, sustainability is a strategic weapon that is getting increased executive level support because it has a clear return on investment.

Of course, there’s no silver bullet solution to transforming sustainability in supply chains, it is something that requires leadership from the top and a clear, multipronged approach. For sustainability to work, collaboration is essential across the extended value chain of internal stakeholders, suppliers, sub-contractors and the end consumer.

MHI is supporting this collaboration at our MODEX expo next March in Atlanta. MODEX 2020 has expanded into two contiguous halls at the Georgia World Congress Center and will include a Solution Center for Transportation and Logistics Solutions. MODEX will also feature new educational theaters on Emerging Technology, the Industrial Internet of Things and Transportation and Logistics. You can learn more and register to attend at modexshow.com.

Additionally, MHI continues to expand the educational and networking offerings at our 2019 MHI Annual Conference event being held as you read this in Palm Springs, CA. MHI will release a new report at the Annual Conference in partnership with Oxford Economics titled Handling the US Economy: The Economic Impact of the Material Handling Industry. This report quantifies the economic contribution of the material handling industry as over $173.2 billion in GDP in 2018. In addition, the report found that the material handling industry supported nearly 1.6 million jobs in 2018, and workers in the industry earn $73,900 annual income on average, placing them well above the median income earners.

I hope that this issue of MHI Solutions helps provide the information and resources you need to address sustainability across your supply chain to improve your overall business performance.

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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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