The LXE buy certainly seems to be a perfect fit for a company interested in providing end-to-end visibility. Most customers see the supply chain as a "total entity, from manufacturing all the way to the retail storefront," says Roeder, and that's what they require now. Honeywell had offerings in retail, transportation and logistics and in delivery, but not in the warehouse end. Roeder says LXE, where he worked for 25 years or so, had exactly what Honeywell needed. "LXE wanted to get outside of the warehouse, and Honeywell wanted to get in. There was almost no overlap, so it was a good fit."
Roeder, who is involved in helping with the integration of the two companies, says the new entity is entirely capable of offering the comprehensive visibility that its customers want - from suppliers to manufacturers and throughout the distribution channel to the store shelf, and then to delivery to the home of the retailer's customer.
Automation is one of the most interesting areas in supply chain today, Roeder says, and that's largely because the focus now includes more than the "blue-collar worker." Previously, automated equipment was allocated to the assembly or warehouse floor. And the devices might have worked very well at notifying workers there that an error had taken place. But the needed equipment to address the issue might be in a supervisor's office. Now, he says, "screens" or whatever other devices are required to attend to the issue can be on the warehouse floor. "Automating of the supervisory-type function is an exciting trend."
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Keywords: supply chain management IT, value chain IT, logistics & supply chain, warehouse management systems, WMS warehouse management systems, supply chain systems, logistics IT solutions
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