Outsourcing Manufacturing – Make Sure YOU Understand the Total Costs

In the increasingly competitive global marketplace, manufacturers need to continually strive to reduce costs to keep or increase market share. This is one of the key factors in making the decision of whether to make parts in-house, outsource to domestic suppliers, or outsource offshore.

Even after a company makes the decision to outsource to a supplier, most don’t look beyond the quoted unit price in making the decision about which supplier to select. This is especially true when comparing the quotes for domestic vs. offshore suppliers. Some companies choose to outsource offshore because the price is cheaper than a domestic supplier. They don’t add in the costs for   transportation , much less all of the other “hidden costs” of dealing with an offshore supplier.

In order to make the correct decision for outsourcing, a company needs to understand the concept of “total cost of ownership” for outsourcing manufacturing.

What is “Total Cost of Ownership?” It is an estimate of the direct and indirect costs and benefits related to the purchase of any part, subassembly, assembly, or product. The Gartner Group originated the concept of (TCO) analysis several years ago, and there are a number of different methodologies and software tools for calculating the TCO for various industries, products, and services.

Total Cost of Ownership includes much more than the purchase price of the goods paid to the supplier. For the purchase the types of manufactured products we are considering, it should include all of the other costs associated with the purchase of the goods, such as:

· Geographical location

·  Transportation  alternatives

· Inventory costs and control

· Quality controls

· Reserve capacity

· Responsiveness

· Technological depth

The search for low cost areas for manufacturing isn’t something new. Fifty years ago, northern and New England companies started moving manufacturing to the southern states. Twenty-five years ago, many West Coast manufacturers started moving high-volume production to Hong Kong, Singapore, and the Philippines. The next lower cost area was Mexico with the advent of the maquiladoras in Mexico.

“Offshoring” refers to relocating one or more processes or functions to a foreign location. For the past 15 years, many manufacturers have sought to reduce costs by offshoring all or part of their manufacturing processes in China. In the last decade, outsourcing offshore has evolved from a little-used practice to a mature industry. Even conservative companies are now willing to experiment with going offshore to gain a competitive edge. The concept of globalization has become part of the fabric of today’s business.

Many times, the decision to outsource offshore is based on faulty assumptions that can have unpleasant consequences. In some cases, the basis for the decision is well intentioned, such as to win new business by being close to a customer.

But, with every business decision comes an assumption, and more often than not, the related assumptions are erroneous. Here’s a list of well intentioned but often-faulty assumptions:

· Longer lead times won’t affect our cost calculations very much.

· Overseas suppliers have the same morals and work ethics as we do.

· Overseas laws will protect our proprietary information.

· We can teach our suppliers to reach our quality needs and to build our product reliably and efficiently.

· Communication will not be an issue given daily conference calls, the Internet, and the fact that the supplier speaks English.

· Assessment and travel costs won’t change our cost calculations very much.

· The increase in delivery and quality costs won’t be significantly different than our cost calculations.

· Lean manufacturing and Six Sigma methodologies can be taught to suppliers before our company’s bottom line is affected.

In actuality, many case studies have shown that these assumptions were orders of magnitude off from reality. The problems with making these assumptions are:

· It doesn’t capture a reasonable amount of variation. Each lot takes weeks more time than anticipated to get to the U.S. or customer site for evaluation.

· The overlying methods for producing product or service have gotten more complex, not less. In general, costs rise with complexity.

· The company doesn’t know how many or even most of the hidden costs that exist (i.e., process stability, process capability over time, potential for future deviations from the current process).

· The company loses complete control of quick changes to react to hidden costs. It’s like trying to control production via remote control.

· The company is making wrong assumptions.

Hidden Costs Grow Geometrically

Accountants deal with hard costs such as material costs, material overhead costs, labor costs, labor overhead costs, quality costs, outside services, sales, general and accounting costs, profits, etc. What they don’t measure are the intangible costs associated with business such as the true costs of delay, defects, and deviations from standard or expected processes (the three D’s).

These costs are often called hidden factories because they keep everyone busy generating absolutely nothing of any tangible or openly measured value. Another way to understand these costs is that they produce results that no one, especially the customer would want to pay for. In addition to obvious direct costs – such as additional meetings, travel, and engineering time – hidden factories also indirectly produce many forms of “soft” costs, such as loss of good will, loss of competitiveness, extended warranty costs, and legal costs.

When it comes to outsourcing, there’s more to consider than the quoted price. Some outsourcing costs are less visible – or downright hidden. Here are the top hidden costs of outsourcing offshore:

· Currency Fluctuations – last year’s invoice of $100,000 could be $140,000 today.

· Lack of Managing an Offshore Contract – underestimating the people, process, and technology required to manage an outsourcing contract.

· Design changes – language barriers make it difficult to get design changes understood and implemented

· Quality problems – substitution of lower grade or different materials than specified is a common problem

· Legal liabilities – offshore vendors refuse to participate in product warranties or guarantees

· Travel Expenses – one or more visits to an offshore vendor can dissipate cost savings

· Cost of Transition – overlooking the time and effort required to do things in a new way. It takes from three months to a year to complete the transition to an offshore vendor.

· Poor Communication – communication is extremely complex and burdensome.

· Intellectual Property – foreign companies, particularly Chinese, are notorious for infringing on IP rights without legal recourse for American companies

In the past, my experience was that once manufacturing moved out of the United States, it rarely came back. However, in the past two years, we have seeing more companies coming back from doing business in China. The main problems these companies encountered were:

· Substitution of materials

· Inconsistent quality

· Stretched out deliveries

· Communication problems

· Inability to modify designs easily and rapidly

· Unfavorable purchase order and credit terms

Quality/Substitution of Materials:

In late 2007, SeaBotix Inc., a San Diego-based manufacturer of miniature underwater vehicles, told me that their Chinese molder was substituting 10 percent glass-filled ABS (a plastic material used in injection molding) for the specified 30 percent glass-filled ABS. The vendor claimed that the parts were made in the specified material, but an independent lab test confirmed that they weren’t. The 10 percent glass-filled material caused the parts to shrink more in molding so that the parts were smaller, didn’t fit mating parts properly, and were not as strong. After their Chinese vendor refused to take the parts back or give credit for the defective parts, SeaBotix decided to bring their tools back to the United States and sourced them at a molder in southern California.

Don Rodocker, president, SeaBotix, said, “The Chinese tooling was one-third the cost of tooling in the U. S., the delivery was one-third the time quoted by U. S. companies, and the piece part price was one-third the quoted U. S. price, but each time we reordered the parts, the Chinese molder increased the price until they were three times the price we could get the parts molded for in San Diego. We would probably go to a Chinese toolmaker in the future for the molds, but would bring the molds back to the States to be run.”

Cost of Inventory

In 2002, Vaniman Manufacturing, which makes dental equipment in Fallbrook, California, shifted most of their sheet metal fabrication offshore to China to save money (a 50 percent cost reduction in piece price). However, they were required to purchase significantly larger lots of parts resulting in a higher cost for the larger inventory. In turn, the larger inventory required more storage space. In addition,  transportation  costs for shipping from overseas were higher. These additional costs and other “soft” costs, such as travel expenses to visit vendors and communication costs, make up what are referred to as the Total Cost of Ownership.

After realizing that these additional costs were eating up the cost savings in the piece pricing, this company brought their sheet metal back to a local supplier in the fourth quarter of 2007. Don Vaniman, who heads the company, cited several reasons for his move: shipping delays, security hassles, and poor quality control. “If you order a thousand widgets in four shipments, three shipments might be all right, but the fourth might be totally wrong.” Vaniman said, “In the U.S., a supplier would jump through hoops to fix that kind of problem, but in China, it could take six months to work out the details.”

Vaniman said that the local supplier was able to nearly match the Chinese costs by developing more efficient and creative production techniques, using recyclable packaging for parts delivery, and utilizing larger lot sizes, delivered on a just-in-time schedule. Vaniman was able to significantly reduce their inventory and the space required for inventory, due to smaller lot sizes being delivered just in time.

In addition, rising costs in China erased much of the price gap. Vaniman said that six years ago, the cost of producing its parts in the U.S. was as much as 50 percent higher than in China. Now it’s only five percent higher – a premium that he’s happy to pay.

These stories from San Diego County are just a microcosm of what’s happening nationwide.

Intellectual Property Theft

There is increasing wariness by upper management of companies regarding sourcing in China, especially with regard to sourcing all the component parts and/or subassemblies for a product because China doesn’t honor U.S. patents. They have heard about companies that have sourced a product in China only to have a product identical to theirs appear on the market, made by a Chinese company at a much lower price. Companies that haven’t paid attention to this danger and sourced their whole product in China have suffered the consequences.

There’s also a growing realization that when it comes to quality and location, location may be the best guarantee of all. It’s hard, very hard, to outsource quality, particularly to a distant land many miles and time zones away. Many companies are returning their call centers to the U.S. because of customer complaints, and I believe that a growing number of manufacturers will realize that “you get what you pay for” from their offshore suppliers. Applying good quality principles takes money, education, and experience, many of which are in short supply in the low-wage countries capturing the majority of offshoring dollars these days.

“Made-in-China” Becoming Undesirable:

As toys, electronics, pharmaceuticals, and other goods manufactured in China have been and are being recalled month after month due to contamination, inferior and/or poisonous materials, the loss of consumer confidence in all China-made products is serving as a wake-up call to every company sourcing in China. Tainted, defective, and poor-quality products have made many consumers leery of buying goods produced in China and have awakened people to the seriousness of the offshore manufacturing issue.

Advantages of Sourcing Domestically

More and more companies are realizing that there are worthwhile advantages to sourcing in the United States. The main ones are:

· Ease of communication – same language

· Same or close time zone

· Flexible delivery – Just-in-time or Kan Ban

· Rapid turnaround for tooling or prototypes

· Many reliable choices for  transportation 

· Smoother design changes – easier to make changes understood and more willingness to make changes

· Lower cost of inventory from lower minimum buys

· Consistent higher quality – materials and dimensions match specifications

· Lower Travel Expenses

· No Intellectual Property Infringement

· More favorable Purchase Order and Credit Terms

“Outsourcing Offshore” will Continue

There is no question that “outsourcing offshore” will continue for the next ten to twenty years, especially for the multinational countries that have products to sell within the countries in which they set up manufacturing operations. In fact, manufacturing products locally for consumption within a foreign country will be crucial to profitability as  transportation  costs continue to increase.

The “desirable” locations for cheaper outsourcing will change over time just as they have in the past fifty years. The purely financial benefits of lower pricing will erode over time. The challenge for America is to keep as many companies as possible growing and prospering within the United States. A correct understanding of the True Cost of Ownership for outsourcing manufacturing will help bring back and maintain more manufacturing in the United States.

8 Essential Travel Tips For Safety

Travelling can be exciting and frightening at the same time. When you are travelling to some destination for the first time, follow these ten essential travel safety tips to make sure that you have the safe and happy journey.

Select Your Ground Transportation Sensibly

When you are travelling in a rickshaw, taxi or bus check with the companies that the mode of transportation is safe, try to avoid travelling in less reliable transportation like a rickshaw. When you are driving yourself, check that the car which you have rent is functioning properly always wear your seatbelt while driving.

Check With The Government Department

You know you can gather all the safety information about any country from the state department. You can visit their website and get accurate details about any country where you are visiting. You can find all kinds of information from types of crime, vaccinations, travel warning. You can register with them so in case if there is any natural disaster or civil unrest you can come back home immediately.

Review The Hotel Escape Route

Let’s be truthful when we check in our hotel room; we are more interested in seeing the facilities and the view from our room, rather than reading the security map placed behind the door. But before you get settled we recommend that you read the emergency escape routes, because in case if there is an emergency then you will be glad to know where to head out from.

Leave An Emergency Contact

Going on a relaxing vacation alone seems to be fun, but that doesn’t mean that you disappear for the world. Leave your contact number, where you are travelling to which hotel you are staying at and when will you be back with a trusted friend or family member; try to contact him or her once every day. That way if something unusual happens with you they will know.

Scan Your Important Documents

Before you head for your travel destination, it is best that you scan your passport, identification card and driving license card you can save it on your smartphone or email it to yourself. This way if you are out and you need to show the passport which is at the hotel then you can show the scanned one.

Confirm Visitors With Hotel Reception

You are in your hotel room, and there is a knock at the door, somebody from the housekeeping is there to clean your room. Before you allow the person in, call the reception and ask them if they have sent anyone from the housekeeping, you never know a thief can enter your room pretending to be from maintenance dept.

Don’t Show Off Your Cash

Keep your valuables like jewellery and cash in your hotel safe or in your purse, while paying off your bills don’t leave huge tips or show off your money. Although when you are travelling there is a strong urge to take pictures with your smartphone, try not to take it out often as there are many thieves around who love to steal cell phones from people.

Keep A Backup Car Gear

When you are driving your car or rent one for a road trip, then make sure that you have packed an emergency car kit. This emergency kit should include flashlights, battery, first aid kit, blankets, bottled water and canned food, the backup battery for phone, a tire gauge and snow shovel.

Transportation Tips For Travelers

AIR TRAVEL TIPS:

Book at least a week in advance. For the best discount airfares make a reservation one, two or three weeks before the departure date.

Keep in mind that Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday flights are usually less expensive.

Night time departure flights are usually cheaper.

Try to choose the same airline for the entire trip.

Do not forget to reconfirm your flight times a day before your departure. Inquire about the check-in procedure and the luggage allowance.

Consider packing into transparent plastic zippered bags for easy inspection. Plan to arrive to an airport at least two hours prior to flight time. Do not leave your baggage alone at any time. You may be asked to turn on all of your electric and electronic appliances.

Save up to 65% when purchasing air tickets online through TravelMake, check out our airfare search form.

BUDGET FLIGHTS EXPLAINED:

Budget airlines offer cheap fares around the world. Reserve your flight on the web or by phone, using your credit card to pay.

Most discount airlines’ tickets are unchangeable and nonrefundable, some offer changes on the return dates for an extra fee. In the latter case you need to make changes at least 24 hours before your departure.

Most budget airlines offer one-way flights without a cost increase or penalty which provides an excellent way to connect cheap flights, to link flights with ground  transportation . Plan to leave some extra time for the connection, the delay of one flight will cause you to miss another linked flight.

Every budget airline has its own luggage restrictions, make sure you learn them before booking. Many of them allow very limited check-in luggage for free, sometimes only 15 or 20 kg (33 or 44 lbs) charging up to $15 per kg (2.2 lbs) of extra weight.

Discount airlines quite often use obscure airports located far away from from the city center. It can cost you extra money and transfer time.

TRAIN TRAVEL TIPS:

Make sure you catch the right train at the right place. Cities often have more than one train station, so pay attention. If confused, ask for help.

Each car in a train is labeled separately, cars are usually added and dropped here and there along the journey. Be sure that the city on your car’s label is your destination.

Theft is quite common on trains, so stay alert and observant. Clip your backpack to the overhead rack for safety.

For overnight trips get a couchette — a sleeping berth in a compartment. Reserve it at least a day in advance from. Sheets, pillowa and blankets will cost you extra money.

For an average independent traveler planning to see lots of Europe, the best way to go is Eurailpass. Eurailpasses offer you unlimited first-class travel on all public railways in 17 European countries. Most passes can be purchased from six months in advance to one week ahead. After you buy a railpass, you have six months to validate it in Europe. You can validate your railpass at any European train station by presenting your railpass and passport to a railway official at a ticket window, who will write in the first and last dates of your travel period.

CRUISE TIPS:

We recommend you to book a cruise early, at least a month prior to the sail date.

Try to be flexible about your travel plans, off-season cruises are almost always cheaper.

By getting a four-day cruise in the middle of the week instead of the popular three-day weekend cruise you might get that extra day at a good rate.

Choosing the right cruise. It is totally up to your taste. The most populat destinations among first-time cruisers are the Caribbean or Mexican Riviera, where you float from one island paradise to the next. More experienced travelers choose Alaska or Canada where you’ll experience calving glaciers and magnificent whales. Cruises to Europe with a few days of trans-Atlantic voyage, culture shock and information-rich shore excursions are recommended for the most experienced cruisers.

Cruise length. Three-day weekend, four-day midweek, week and two-week cruises are the most popular.

Cabins are listed as inside (no windows) or outside (with windows, higher priced). If you plan to spend most of the time in your cabin, choose the biggest room you can afford. Standard cabins have twin beds, which can usually be converted into a queen-sized bed, while bunk beds in other rooms cannot be converted.

RENTAL CAR TIPS:

There are four types of car rental rates: a daily rate with a mileage charge; a daily rate with a limited number of free miles per day; a daily rate with unlimited mileage; and a rate that has free mileage over an extended period. Vehicles are economical when rented by the week with unlimited mileage. Daily rates are usually quite high, but there are some good 3-day deals. Rates vary from company to company, month to month, and country to country.

Your age may affect the rate. Younger renters (below 25 years of age) can get charged extra money, like being required to buymore expensive insurance. Some companies will not rent a car to a person under 21. There are also maximum age limits which vary from company to company. If you are beyond the lower and upper age limits, look into leasing a vehicle, which has less age restrictions. Leasing a car gets around many tax and insurance costs and is a great deal for people needing a car for three weeks or more. The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany, Spain, and Italy are popular places to lease cars.

All car rental companies require a valid drivers license. Some car rental companies check the driver’s record and will deny a car to a customer with a poor driving record. In some foreign countries, an international drivers license may be required.

We wish you a successful and safe trip!

Transportation and Logistics – What is a Freight Class?

Each product that moves by an LTL carrier has a freight class assigned. A single governing body know as the National Motor Freight Traffic Association (NMFTA) determines a product’s freight class. All carriers acknowledge the product’s classification that is assigned by this group, it is virtually the unspoken gospel. The NMFTA will analyze a product’s typical size, value, density and difficulty of transporting that particular type of product. Once they have analyzed the product, they will assign that product a freight class. The freight class will range from 50 to 500. The lower the freight class, the cheaper the cost will be to move the item. Typically items at lower classes will be items that are very dense, easy to transport and will typically have a low per pound value. The higher the freight class, the cost to move the item will be more expensive. Items listed at higher classes will be more bulky, difficult to transport with lower weights and are more valuable.

It is very important that the correct class information be entered into the quoting system to allow customers to receive accurate quotes. A carrier has the right to inspect any item being shipped on their trucks. If a product’s description does not match the class that is shown on the Bill Of Lading. the carrier does have the right to adjust the billing and bill the shipment at a higher freight class. If a carrier adjusts the class and bills the shipper at a higher rate, those additional charges will be passed along to the shipper. Some carriers will also bill additional inspection fees to the shipment, which will also be passed along to the customer as a supplemental bill. Typically a rating system will provide accurate pricing based on the information entered. If the shipment’s class is different than the class that is entered, the amount billed to the shipper will not match the amount they were quoted and can cause issues in collecting the freight charges.

The following are Product examples and their Freight Class:

  • 500 lbs. of bricks- Class 50
  • 500 lbs. of computer towers- Class 100
  • 500 lbs. of Ping-Pong Balls- Class 500

Again, as you can see, the heavier the product the lower the Class rating and thus the shipper will pay a less rate. Freight shipping is not a glamorous industry, but it is a very necessary part of the worlds supply chain, and if utilized the right way a company can save a lot of money.

Renting Transportation in Costa Rica

So, you’ve decided to head down to Costa Rica for a little vacation time. It is a quality destination, but you are going to need some way to get around. That means renting a car, truck or van.

A good trip is all about preparation. To rent a vehicle in Costa Rica, you can just do a search on your favorite search engine and make an online reservation. If you are looking for something a bit more credible, you can look through travel and surf magazines at some of the ads. Since someone had to pay for those ads, you can rest assured that they are a bit more established and credible.

Having done many trips to Costa Rica, I can tell you with authority the best way to really rent a car. The first step is to do nothing. Do not make reservations. The reason is you are never really sure what you are going to end up with at the airport and you are at the mercy of the rental company. That 2008 Toyota Highlander turns out to be a 1978 Toyota Pickup truck with rust holes so big you can read the signs painted on the streets through the floor.

A better approach is to fly into San Jose, the primary city in the country. It is located pretty much smack dab in the middle of the country. This means you can drive to just about any location within three or four hours. In short, it is a perfect hub to start your trip from.

To rent a vehicle, simply go through customs and walk out the exit. There you will be inundated with people trying to rent you vans, trucks, bikes, cars and pretty much anything you can think of. It can be a bit chaotic, but you have the distinct advantage of seeing the merchandise in person if you know what I mean. You have the secondary advantage of renting the vehicle right there and hitting the road immediately. The value of this cannot be understated.

On a trip a few years ago, eight of us flew into San Jose. We walked through customs and came out to find our 2 vans were not in the parking lot. A call to the van company was met by a voice mail recording. We left messages. We sat in the sun. We left more messages. We sat in the heat. After three hours, two of the humblest vans you have ever seen backfired there way into the parking lot. At that point, we were far too tired to care. It was only during the evening as we drove along that we realized the car was full of cockroaches!

Costa Rica is a tremendous vacation destination and I highly recommend you visit the country. Just remember, rent your ride there.

Next Generation Transportation Technology

The big success of the Cash for Clunkers program with consumers proves that many people are eager to trade in their gas dependent cars for next generation transportation technology.

Actually, drivers have been interested for a long time, especially as they watched the price of gas zoom up. The problem was that the new cars were too expensive and not mass-produced. Finally the new cars are on the way and becoming more affordable. The next generation of transportation is here in hydrogen and electric cars.

Hydrogen Cars

Hydrogen cars use hydrogen, one of the elements that create water, to power and propel the vehicle. Technically, hydrogen is an energy carrier not an energy source. It has proven to be good as an electro-mechanical converter in fuel cells, which is one of the methods used to covert hydrogen’s chemical energy into mechanical energy, producing water and electricity. The other method is combustion, and hydrogen is used similarly like gas in traditional gas combustion engines.

Car manufacturers have created several hydrogen cars including the Ford Edge and the GM Sequel. However, it seems that some will be redirecting their efforts to advancing electric car technology. This could be caused by several factors including a prediction that hydrogen cars may not be feasible for another forty years, and also the US government announcing in May 2009 that it is cutting off funding for hydrogen vehicle development.

There are other vehicles that use hydrogen technology, including golf carts, motorcycles, wheelchairs, and bikes, and commuter vehicles like buses, trains, and planes. Probably the most famous hydrogen vehicle is the Space Shuttle, which uses it to propel into space.

Electric Cars

Electric cars were actually popular a long time ago, but by the 30’s gasoline powered cars had become cheaper and faster, and took over the market. Electric cars reappeared as consumers tired of gas prices that kept rising, and looked to electricity.

An electric car is powered with fuel cells and electric motors, which replaces the gas powered engine. The controller runs on rechargeable batteries, and it powers the electric motor. Today these batteries are in packs, but future electric cars will have ultra capacitors which store kinetic energy. These are also called spinning flywheels.

Electric cars may be more expensive at first, but owners should make that up with reduced maintenance costs. They also are more energy efficient. They have lower carbon dioxide emissions, cutting air pollution, and are almost silent, reducing noise pollution.

Many people today drive hybrid cars, which use both gas and electric power. Generally the internal engine is powered by gas, or fossil fuel, and the electric motors are used when the car is at low speeds or idling. They also use a braking technique called regenerative braking to make the car more efficient. One of the best known hybrids today is the Toyota Prius, and the Chevy Volt is scheduled to hit the market soon. With the prices coming down, coupled with governmental incentives, we should see many more electric cars on the highways in the next few years.

The Essence of Transportation Performance

In logistics, it is part of the general framework of any business to determine transportation performance. This will help a company analyze and optimize the problems that are causing delays in the delivery of products and goods. One company needs to ensure that the way the goods are carried to the different market areas are efficient, sustainable, and fast. This includes not only the travel time but the destinations and synchronization of the way the goods are served to various parts of the country or the world.

One of the things that a company should look into when dealing with transportation performance is the existing laws of the country regarding transportation. There are some areas in which trucks are banned from a certain period of time to another. The laws that are affected by social and environmental factors significantly affect any business entity also. In effect, if a certain town or county does not allow trucks to pass through their area, it will be a loss of revenue for the company to take a longer route.

Another thing that companies should be aware of is transportation mobility. There are several movements that advance several principles in terms of human behavior and usage of the road. For more than 15 years now, there are organizations that advocate pollution-free roads, proper road constructions, etc. These movements will significantly impact how goods are delivered. This will include routes that will be closed or roads that will not be available for service to some.

In a different note, there is another way to measure how transportation performs. This is through the measurement of the effectiveness of public transportation, the result of which will also significantly affect the business sector. This normally happens in the freight transportation system, too. In freight, things are studied in a global scale. This is because there are several considerations in relation to freight movement. This includes sea and air traffic and land transportation efficiency. It should be understood that the goal of measuring the efficiency of how transportation occurs is to come up with ways to do away with congestion and overcrowding of vehicles. The plans made for the construction of these roads are always long-term, spanning to more than 50 years.

In this light, logistics management should be viewed in broader terms. The scope of integration and the efficiency of transportation of goods are so vast that one wonders where to start. Although in the present, businesses only base this on the availability of their products in the market shelves, there will certainly be a point in which the product will lose its dependability, if the transportation of the goods is not controlled efficiently.

If a product is sourced miles away from a store, it will take a longer period of time to replenish the stocks. Without an effective and efficient means of transporting these goods, there will be several occurrences of bad customer experience, which will end up in the lack of dependability of the product. It is in this regard that transportation performance is just about as essential as other company targets and metrics.

Fabulous Wedding Transportation

If you are planning a wedding, have you given any thought yet to transportation? How the bride and groom will get from Point A to Point B is not just a logistical question; it is also a matter of style. The mode of transportation that you choose to take you from home to ceremony and ceremony to reception should blend in perfectly with your overall wedding theme.

There are numerous choices for wedding conveyances. You want your transportation to feel as special as the rest of your wedding, so this is not the day to take the subway or drive yourself in your regular car. Part of being a bride (or groom) is being pampered, and you will want to treat yourself to something that feels luxurious.

The traditional transportation for the bride and groom is a limousine. Limos are usually black or white, and can come in a few different sizes. White cars definitely scream “wedding”, whereas black limos are appropriate for any number of special occasions. When determining the size of car to hire, stop and think about who might ride in it besides the bride and groom. Frequently, the bride and all of her bridesmaids will take the limo from home to the ceremony, and after that the bride and groom will want to be alone in the limo. If you and your attendants are wearing gowns with full skirts, be sure that the vehicle will accommodate everyone without crushing or wrinkling the dresses. Sometimes couples will also rent limos to convey their parents rest of the bridal party, but it is not mandatory, so don’t worry if that expense does not fit into your budget.

There are other types of cars that can be hired for the wedding day. A very formal wedding with the groom in black tie and the bride in a fancy gown with ornate wedding jewelry would call for a very special car, like a Bentley. For brides who prefer a more understated elegance, a Town Car is always a nice choice. There has been a trend in recent years towards using huge cars, like stretch Hummers, but with the shift towards greener lifestyles, a giant gas-guzzler is more likely to appall than impress your guests. It is always nicer to err on the side of being less ostentatious.

Certainly your wedding transportation does not have to be a car. A horse and carriage is a lovely way for the bride and groom to travel. Look for someone who specializes in weddings, and will dress the coach with beautiful flowers. A variation on this idea is a horse-drawn sleigh for a winter wedding. This could be perfect for a bride having a winter wonderland themed wedding. She could wear a velvet gown with twinkling crystal wedding jewelry and a dramatic cape. Imagine how cozy it would be to snuggle up with your new husband and ride along to the sound of sleigh bells jingling. It would be like something out of a Bing Crosby song.

There is one form of transportation that is absolutely free, and that is your own two feet. In many parts of Europe, there is a charming custom that involves the bride and groom leading a processional of guests from the ceremony to the reception. The entire group forms a little parade, cheered on by well-wishers. It is a lovely tradition. Since most American guests will be unfamiliar with this type of proceeding, you would want to inform them before the wedding, otherwise they will just get in their cars and drive off. It should be a given that he two locations ought to be close enough together to make it an easy stroll, not a long hike.

With all of the many wedding details to consider, fabulous transportation may not be at the forefront of your mind. Don’t forget about it though, because the bride and groom should certainly travel in style on their wedding day. Take the time to choose a special conveyance that will add to the fun of your big day.

System Performance Measures For Transportation

Several states and nations have already implemented their transportation research. The hardest part is to create an accurate, pertinent, reliable, reproducible, understandable and generally verifiable measure for transportation. This way they can analyze, describe and evaluate the initiatives their government has proposed, planned and implemented to enhance their place’s system performance.

In the transportation measures, there is a need to include different planning strategies such as the management of supply and demand in terms of the transportation, the sustainable transport practices, integration of intermodal elements, programs and hierarchies and the land use of zoning and planning. These approaches are deemed as great concepts. However, even though these notions have already existed for several years now, there are still a lot of problems when it comes to dealing with measures for transportation. One of them is the fact that there has been limited progress on the effectiveness, equity and other initiatives on the planning process.

The transportation measures should be viewed as an opportunity that allows the optimization of the transportation. There have been companies worldwide that already participated in this effort to make an informative discussion about the newest and latest trends in planning for measures for transportation. In order to do this, a certain company should be able to present a clear focus regarding this vital topic so that they can have a productive meeting session. It is all about the presentation of the information so that the participants will be able to apply the new planning measures that are related to transportation and its performance.

In the key transportation indicators, there are six indicators that are commonly used. The first one is the air indicator. The government or the agencies that will observe the transportation will have to consider the direct flights in and out of the country or state. It is also necessary to check the weekday commercial air flights that go out and about the airport. The next indicator is the alternate indicator, which will determine the streets that are currently pedestrian friendly as well as the bike paths ratio in relation to the streets. The total number of bicycle routes should also be checked. Another indicator is the commute indicator, which will calculate the rate of the automobile occupancy and the number of commuters whoa re driving alone. It is also determined here the percentage of the persons who use the different modes of transportation as they go to work every single day.

Infrastructure indicators are those that compute that check the condition of the roads and bridges as well as the public expenditure on the personal transportation. Public transit indicators are also included in the measures for transportation. This will quantify the percentage of the individuals that choose to use the transit instead of the car. In addition, this is used to check the number of minutes of the scheduled routes for the buses. The last one is the vehicle indicator, which calculates the vehicles for every household and the ratio of fuel efficiency.

The Transportation Inspector Job Description

Transportation Inspectors are responsible for inspecting and monitoring transportation equipment and vehicles to make sure that they comply with existing standards and regulations for vehicle safety. In inspecting vehicles, they look for signs of mechanical malfunctions, damage or abuse. They look for broken parts that need to be replaced. They examine each unit and conduct testing with the use of proper diagnostic tools and equipment. After undergoing repairs, they inspect vehicles and equipment to make sure that all repair works required were carried out properly.

Transportation inspectors are in tasked with preparing reports on inspection done and the consequential actions taken as a result of inspection or investigation. They issue notices and make recommendations for corrective actions depending on the results. They actively investigate complaints and reports regarding any violation involving safety standards and regulations. They examine vehicle operating rules, qualification guidelines for operators, and training and testing programs for carriers to make sure they are complying with safety standards and regulations. When carriers request for waiver of federal standards, transportation inspectors investigate and formulate recommendations. They review shipping papers, logs of commercial vehicles, records of drivers and equipment in order to identify any problems or issues, and to make sure that they comply with regulatory requirements. When the need arises, they investigate violations or incidents where there were accidents, delays or failure of equipment or systems. They are responsible for negotiating with authorities to identify and eliminate existing hazards in routes normally taken by vehicles of the carrier. They are also involved in evaluating new packaging methods for hazardous materials, including testing, shipping transporting to make sure that the public is adequately protected.