Operations

Starbucks Expands Digital Tipping Option

You can do practically anything with a mobile phone these days including tipping your favorite barista. Could such apps be another path for rewards programs and tapping customer needs?

EVA and the Private Company

What can “economic value added,” increasingly considered the public company’s preferred performance metric, do for your company?

Mixed Reactions from the Manufacturing Industry on President’s Budget Proposal

Judging from initial reactions from top trade groups, manufacturers are of two minds concerning the President’s proposed budget. The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) scorns the tax increases saying it blocks growth, but likes some of the other provisions. The Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM), on the other hand, sees the prospect for wider tax reform and some benefits to manufacturers in proposals for infrastructure spending.

Tesla “Gigafactory” Could Spur Innovation Across Industries

Landing the Tesla “gigafactory” will be an economic-development bonanza for one of the four states in the running. But beyond the borders of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona or Nevada, the complex also could provide a huge innovation boost for the stubborn problem of increasing battery life in electric cars and unleash spinoff advancements in other electricity-related industries.

5 Trends Shaping the Future of Manufacturing

Emerging enterprises and CEOs thinking of starting new manufacturing or product design businesses have a number of tools including social media and digital marketing that allow them to take an idea and bring it to market faster, cheaper and with an intimate customer connection. Here are five trends that can provide a tailwind to help.

5 Rules for Automating Your Warehouse

Warehouse management is one of the last frontiers of productivity improvement for most manufacturers and distributors. Writing in both Manufacturing Business Technology and Food Manufacturing, Dan Labell, president and owner of Westfalia Technologies., a provider of logistics solutions for plants, warehouses and distribution centers, offers five simple principles for evaluating and automating one’s warehouse management system.

What Are the True Implications for Manufacturers After the UAW Verdict...

Manufacturing CEOs in the South and elsewhere heaved a sigh of relief after Volkswagen workers in Tennessee rejected United Auto Workers union representation. This isn’t the end of unionization attempts at transplants or suppliers.

6 Steps To Ensure Nadella’s Success at Microsoft

With the appointment of Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella come expectations for him to make some quick changes. But is this wise? The six steps offered here could help guide any freshly minted CEO.

Does Your Wellness Program Hurt Your Profit…and Maybe Even Your Employees?

Suppose a vendor made you this proposal: “Pay us to take your employees off the job for medical tests that the government specifically says are unnecessary, and then send them to the doctor (at your expense) even though the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) says healthy adults don’t benefit from checkups. We also want you to bribe or even fine employees to drive participation. Despite this adverse morale impact and wasted time and money, we promise you’ll reduce your healthcare spending, mostly because we’ll make up the savings numbers.” Here’s a solution.

Lean Production’s Next Frontiers and How CEOs Can Benefit

Lean is one of the biggest management ideas of the past 50 years, says McKinsey’s Ewan Duncan and Ron Ritter in the current issue of the McKinsey Quarterly. It may have started in assembly plants and other factory settings but it has moved into services ranging from retailing and healthcare to financial services, IT, and even the public sector. How might CEOs outside of manufacturing apply some of these insights to their companies?
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