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Today in Distribution

The complete daily resource for distribution professionals

Increased Comfort Increases Safety & Productivity

May 16, 2013 9:54 am | by Big Ass Fans

Machinery can break down in extreme conditions so it only seems natural that employees might have cause to break down as well. As temperatures escalate, comfort tends to take a nosedive, dragging productivity and safety along with it. The introduction of air movement by way of high volume, low speed (HVLS) fans helps combat these adverse conditions.

Is The United States Ready To Take Manufacturing Back?

May 10, 2013 3:49 pm | by Patrick Van den Bossche, Pramod Gupta, Hector Gutierrez, Chui Lee — A.T. Kearney

The return of a few companies’ manufacturing is encouraging. But the big question is: To what extent is the United States capable of taking back manufacturing on a significant scale? The challenges are great. From a broad supply chain ecosystem perspective, for example, companies obviously will need to rebuild a supplier network that may have evaporated, along with the disappearance of the manufacturing operations it supported.

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Key To Mobile Success In Industrial Channels

May 9, 2013 10:02 am | by Jim Somers, Antenna Software

As industrial companies move closer to embracing mobility, there is potential temptation to get things done quickly and overlook crucial elements of a deployment until after the app is deployed. However, by addressing these areas early in the planning stage of a deployment, companies can achieve the ROI and long-term value they desire with mobile applications.

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Legal Watch: A Case For Arbitration

May 7, 2013 12:36 pm | by Fred Mendelsohn, Partner at Burke, Warren, Mackay & Serritella, P.C. in Chicago

Arbitration clauses and the process of arbitration are not always what distributors expect them to be — private, speedy, and less expensive than litigation. A recent case demonstrated how, in some circumstances, arbitration is the right tool for supplier-distributor disputes.

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Industry Focus: Group Dynamic

May 7, 2013 12:15 pm | by Abbigail Kriebs, Associate Editor

Over the last decade the industrial distribution marketplace has changed dramatically, surviving in a challenging economic situation and a changing business environment. Industrial Distribution’s associate editor, Abbigail Kriebs, got a chance to speak with three industry executives representing diverse viewpoints to hear how business has changed in the last few years and what trends they see going forward into the rest of the year.

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Strictly For Sales: Two Types Of Push-Back On Price

May 7, 2013 12:09 pm

Are price shoppers cynical, savvy, or both? Is there a difference between frugal and cheap? Are price shoppers solely responsible for the tug-of-war with salespeople? These are a few of the questions people like me ponder. Salespeople face daily push-back on their prices.

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Get A Handle On Your Material

May 7, 2013 11:20 am | by Abbigail Kriebs, Associate Editor

From continually updating software to the movement of product from one location to another, warehouses are busy places, and busy places require a strategy in order to be handled efficiently and effectively. There are a lot of different factors that affect the productivity of a material handling operation, from the purchasing of new equipment to electronic labeling to ensure accurate inventory and minimal errors.

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A Closer Look: The Effect on Distributors As The Economy Sputters Along

May 7, 2013 11:16 am | by Jack Keough, Contributing Editor, Industrial Distribution

The stock market was humming along earlier this year, setting records on many days. Housing starts are climbing and industrial production is increasing, but beneath all that good news there still is uncertainty in the industrial and construction sectors. 

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Distribution At A Crossroads

May 7, 2013 11:04 am | by Tompkins International

Near the intersection of business as usual and success going forward sits industrial distribution strategy: increasing online sales, technology, omnichannel, multichannel, and social media. The buyer is now in the driver’s seat, and AmazonSupply represents more than just a toe in the water. Amazon’s dedicated industrial B2B site could lead to its dominance in the MRO market, whether industrial distributors realize it or not.

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Market Pulse: Manufacturing Dips, Remains In Positive Territory

May 7, 2013 10:49 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Index registered 51.3 percent, a decrease of 2.9 percentage points from February’s reading of 54.2 percent, indicating expansion in manufacturing for the fourth consecutive month, but at a slower rate. Both the New Orders and Production Indexes reflected growth in March compared to February, albeit at slower rates, registering 51.4 and 52.2 percent, respectively.

One Forkful At A Time

May 7, 2013 10:41 am | by Anna Wells, Executive Editor

I recently stumbled across a news article online that described the latest innovation to target those pesky extra pounds. Never one to be able to resist a gimmicky product in a bandwagon marketplace like the now multi-billion-dollar weight loss industry, I found myself reading about the "HapiFork" — a utensil designed to pressure users into eating less by counting their bites and vibrating to indicate whether they are eating too fast.

Association Spotlight: Ninth Annual ISA Product Show & Conference Grows in Size, Scope, Message

May 6, 2013 10:42 am | by John Buckley, Executive Vice President, Industrial Supply Assoication

San Diego seems to be the right place to be in 2013; everything will be bigger and better — including the 2013 ISA Product Show & Conference, scheduled for June 1-4 at the San Diego Convention Center and Hilton San Diego Bayfront. As of ten weeks out, we have signed up 60 new exhibitors and have 50 percent larger registration than last year.

Eight Ideas To Inspire Your Distribution Business

May 3, 2013 2:24 pm | by Unleash:WD & Epicor

What will your company do differently this year? In recent discussions with innovators in the wholesale distribution industry, several forward-looking themes emerged. It’s important to make a distinction between true transformations versus incremental change.

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ISM: Manufacturing Slowing, But Still Expanding

May 3, 2013 9:33 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in April for the fifth consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Report On Business. ISM’s New Orders Index registered 52.3 percent in April, an increase of 0.9 percentage point when compared to the March reading of 51.4 percent.

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Report Indicates Electrical Wholesaler Websites Have Untapped Opportunities

April 26, 2013 9:53 am | by hybris

The hybris 2012 State of B2B E-Commerce survey found that the majority of B2B procurement specialists (88%) prefer vendors that offer e-commerce over those who do not. Many buyers, however, indicated that the quality of the B2B e-commerce experience is inferior to that of B2C, limiting its effectiveness.

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MRO Data Key To Unlocking Cost Savings & Operational Efficiency

April 23, 2013 9:44 am | by IHS

Maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) groups at many companies  are facing a major challenge: toxic MRO master catalogs stuffed with incomplete data on replacement parts, a problem that drives up costs and creates large-scale problems for multiple corporate divisions.

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Plant Maintenance Opportunities

April 22, 2013 9:58 am | by Grady Winston, Blogger & Entrepeneur

Think of a scheduled maintenance and plant shutdown project as spring cleaning on a huge scale. Scheduled maintenance at a plant can mean a wealth of opportunities for a distributor. Check out this infographic for a list of supplies plant operators need to get the spring cleaning job done.

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Q&A With Marisa Betancourt on Infor's FACTS

April 17, 2013 10:02 am | by Abbigail Kriebs, Associate Editor

Industrial Distribution had a chance recently to speak with Marisa Betancourt at Infor. Betancourt is the FACTS Product Manager/Senior Business Analyst for the software company, and filled us in on what the FACTS programs was created to do for distributors.

The Amazon Cure

April 15, 2013 5:16 pm | by Jim Tompkins, CEO of Tompkins International

Tompkins explores the main symptoms associated with the current plague of short-term thinking, how companies can begin growing again, and how the “Amazon Cure” and Jeff Bezos’ focus on innovation and investment  help create long-term value. It’s time for business leaders to stop cannibalizing their long-term success by focusing on short-term profits.

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Successful Succession Planning - Part Two

April 4, 2013 4:18 pm

I think some of the misconceptions are that you have to give control away to transfer ownership. The business owner’s rarely want to give up control. Oftentimes they have a very valuable company that they have worked hard to build and they are scared to transfer it on down.

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