Archive

Posts Tagged ‘logistics’

on fake news


I am not one for conspiracy theories and am fully aware that news media are not, in this day and age, unbiased so I treat anything that I read or hear from them with as open a mind as I can. If something interests me enough then I try to triangulate and get bearing from other directions and try to form my opinions accordingly. I was, at least, taught at school to try and think critically and that side of my education was refreshed as I worked my way up the greasy pole of management through three decades.

An example of something that is puzzling me at the moment, and it is an area in which I have a professional interest, is a claim that I saw recently that we have lost over 100,000 lorry drivers from the UK job market.

Now I know that some drivers from EU countries have left due to the UK leaving the EU, but 100,000? This just does not gel with what I see and hear around me. There are not loads of trucks parked up with no drivers and when I talk to immigrant drivers they will admit that some of their compatriots have gone home, but not in any great numbers.

There are issues in terms of recruiting and retaining drivers within the industry; poor pay, nowhere to park for statutory breaks, poor facilities and, for those not directly employed, the costs of retaining their licence. Even getting a licence now is a problem because of a ridiculous EU regulation that we have not struck from the statute that prevents someone going directing to an articulated truck licence (you have to take a rigid truck test first and then move up to an artic) effectively pretty much doubling the cost of a licence.

But the media channels are reporting a shortage of drivers as a problem of us having left the EU and so that is what the person in the street believes when they see an empty shelf at their local store.

I will refrain from banging on too much about these things; there are plenty of other examples and you may well have favourites of your own. It seems that the media are either trying to make a political point or are just looking for ways to sex up a story and think that we are all too stupid to challenge them, or maybe it is also just the echo chamber effect; to give their readers news biased to the way that they want to hear it.

Sad really, but the truth has become what you want it to be and that is dangerous. Orwell’s 1984 might have come late, but I think that it has, perhaps, caught up with us.

a rant on panic buying


One of my current jobs is in the retail food sector where we are seeing, in the first two hours of trading every day, greater transaction numbers that we see in the same time on the heaviest day before Christmas. Read more…

outsourcing: getting it right


At an industry forum last week we were posed the question; has outsourcing shown rel long term benefit? s the first panellist began to answer I was framing my own response as yes, I think that it has. Read more…

musings on how the office can survive into the future


There still seems to be a view that we provide buildings; offices, hospitals, warehouses or whatever and that people come to these places to do things there, and in the case of an office there is a view that we no longer need them, that the technology of today makes many jobs independent of a traditional office base. That is true in some cases, but the problem with most of the arguments of that principle is that they treat the building and what goes on in it a separate entities. Read more…

to plan or not to plan


“We need a plan” is a fairly obvious statement before you start any endeavour and with a decent plan in place there is little excuse for not succeeding; “I love it when a plan comes together” I think Hannibal Smith used to say in each A Team episode, but what about when a plan goes off the rails, or if you don’t have a plan? Read more…

teaching is a two way street


This week I will be wearing my logistics hat again as I am running a warehousing and materials management course and will re-visiting the delights of standard deviations, calculating point loads and similar mathematics along with the more practical side of what mechanical aids to use for various applications. Read more…

Trick or treat? Some skeletons from the closet…


Keeping up my Halloween tradition of talking about things that went bump in the night, here are a few more oops moments that I learned from. Maybe they will help you avoid similar mistakes. Read more…

how hard is it to deliver decent customer service?


Back to customer service this week and a trio of unrelated incidents that have got me thinking about this again. Read more…

what’s the connection between the Mona Lisa and an FM?


I had been looking at a copy of the Mona Lisa and then the next day a conversation with a facilities manager then started this train of thought off.

The Mona Lisa contains a number of visual gags and one of the joys of looking at it is to spot these details, but any good painting, or photograph, or view will have all sorts of details that make up the whole visual experience. Just as it is nice to stop and smell the roses from time to time it is also good to let the eyes wander over something and feast on the smaller elements that you’ll find. Even something familiar can yield new things when you stand back and look. Read more…

Monday Musings holiday fun on travel to London


As it is a Holiday Monday I thought a little frivolity could surface and so, having been reading about the Mayoral campaign on a couple trips to London recently, it strikes me that I might make a suggestion.

One issue for both candidates seemed to be to do something about “the monolith that is Transport for London”. If so, then I ask that they axe the DffTCB; The Department for frustrating ThatConsultantBloke. I have a picture of something like this: Read more…