ACQSYS blog

Goodbye cheap labour and how to automate your supply chain

Posted 20-02-20, Tags: lost transit equipment, recover lost rollcages, roll cage abuse, roll cage recovery, roll cage recyling, supply chain management, supply chain strategies, sustainability, transit equipment, UK immigration policy

No, I’m not talking about the clueless Marxists and Trotskyites running Her Majesty’s Most Loyal Opposition (why do they insist on calling it Corbynism?). I’m referring to the low skilled migrants who have saved the UK economy the inconvenient cost of investing in labour-saving technology, over the decades we have been members of the EU club. 

Free movement of the cheapest available labour has left us under-invested and less productive than France, who spend more time blocking the streets than turning up for work.

Should I automate our supply chain?

Whether you like it or not, automation will need to replace cheap labour, but what will that mean in practice?  Well, it’s not just about missing our fruit pickers and shelf stackers. It’s about the equipment that’s going to be needed as we become more efficient.  It’s also not about replacing British jobs with automation, because we already did that with underpaid workers from the EU.

In the future, for every underpaid labourer who’s replaced by automation, there’s a piece of equipment needed to replace them.  Roll cages, trays, totes, magnums - the more you automate, the more you need kit that can travel on wheels, conveyors or drones, and that means the use of transit equipment must inevitably increase. 

As a consequence, we need to become better at managing that equipment and spending less on replacing it, when so many of us have historically treated it as “natural wastage”. 

Even The Economist concluded this week, from the research on the impact in a fall in the number of immigrants that “bosses will invest in labour-saving machinery, which can reduce the pay of remaining workers”.[i]

“Natural wastage” is not sustainable

Let’s not forget the waste of natural resources either as the focus shifts to measuring sustainable activities across our industries. The great shot across the bows came from Larry Fink, CEO of Blackrock last month when he announced that they were implementing the usage of sustainability metrics for the companies they invest in. They are going to start forcing companies to disclose their climate risk according to the standards set by the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and the Task Force on Climate Related Financial Disclosure (TCFD).[ii] Shareholders and potential investors are taking a growing interest in how sustainable your business really is.

Helping to better control your transit assets

At ACQSYS we help over forty major national businesses maintain their stocks of transit assets because they are already aware of the cost of not managing those fleets. They will be the ones best prepared for the new efficiencies that will rely on increased use of re-usable equipment. Those who don’t recognize the importance of controlling these assets will become the losers, when their equipment becomes free game to those who don’t want to buy their own.

A different focus needed

So, while the Labour party spout Marxist rhetoric about supporting our out of date economy with free movement of a proletariat, (who want to be capitalists anyway), I would recommend a different focus. That is to invest in technology and its supporting accessories to create real and sustainable wealth. Prosperity that can be distributed according to effort, not dogma. 

Bill Howie

 

[i] The Economist The Economics of migration – Delayed reaction https://www.economist.com/united-states/2020/02/13/immigration-to-america-is-down-wages-are-up February 13, 2020

[ii] https://www.blackrock.com/uk/individual/blackrock-client-letter “Sustainability as BlackRock’s  new standard for investing” January 14, 2020

How to deal with Election Blues

Posted 26-11-19, Tags: ., Brexit, lost transit equipment, recover lost rollcages, recovery of lost roll cages, retail peak periods, retail peak season, retailers, roll cage cost savings, roll cage recovery, Roll cages, rollcages, transit equipment, UK economy, UK elections

Here we are folks, at the start line of the UK Political Demolition Derby.  The aim of the race is to make as many unachievable promises as possible between now and 12 December, while giving or not giving an opinion on Brexit.  The winner is the one left standing with no majority to make good on any of their promises.

On the left we have Comrade Corbyn and on the right, Flashman Johnson.  In between we have various grass munchers and delusional characters, hoping to do anything but achieve a clear result. 

Last week the Corbynistas welcomed his manifesto speech but must be wondering why he left out curing cancer, establishing world peace and free Corbyn hats to all party apparatchiks. 

All at no cost to anyone earning less than someone more successful than them. 

Meanwhile, “The Boz” has aimed money at the NHS and the police but it’s just pocket money compared to the plans of the socialists, who want to take us back to the 1970s of high taxes, rampant unemployment and trades unions on steroids.  So, he’s staking everything on achieving Brexit, in the face of every other party who either think the original result was the result of stupidity or are running scared of their own constituents.

About now, I would probably start preaching that you should use ACQSYS to protect your roll cages and plastic trays in the face of chaos but I’m too depressed, so I’ll just say good luck and we’ll see who is left standing on Friday the 13th.

 

Bill Howie

Photo Credit - Pixabay Pete Linford.  Left to Right in photo only - Boris Johnson, Jeremy Corbyn 

Life is not like a nursery rhyme

Posted 13-12-18, Tags: how to find lost roll cages, how to report stolen roll cages, lost roll cages, lost rollcages, lost transit equipment, peak retail trading times, recover lost rollcages, recovery of lost roll cages, retail peak periods, retail peak season, roll cage abuse, roll cage recovery

Remember the tale of Little Bo Peep?  Trusting in blind faith she did nothing and her lost sheep came home.  Unfortunately life’s not like that.

It’s getting awfully close to Christmas and the stores are hanging onto your roll cages, stuffed with stock they haven’t had time to move onto the shelves.  That wasn’t part of the plan when you worked out how many cages you would need to survive peak trading.

As the cages are emptied they become a nuisance and they get pushed outside onto the loading bay or in the car park where they become prey to all and sundry who have a desire to help themselves.  That’s how your assets find their way into other supply chains and you never see them again.  Come January you are wondering how it was possible to lose so many.

With our national asset recovery service we are likely to find a lot of those cages in places your vehicles never go and where you would never expect to find them. 

So before you start making a case for more capital to replace lost cages, why not call us?

We recover equipment across the country for major distributors, retailers, wholesalers et al and we can do the same for you.  They used to think like Bo Peep but they don’t need to anymore.

Bill Howie

Don't have your head turned by a pretty roll cage

Posted 21-01-18, Tags: how to find lost roll cages, how to report stolen roll cages, lost roll cages, lost transit equipment, recover lost rollcages, roll cage abuse, roll cage recovery, roll cage theft

If you take a stroll down to your despatch dock and look at the roll cages about to be loaded onto vehicles, you might be surprised to find a number that don’t belong to you.

Understandably, you might not want the hassle of emptying the “foreign” cages but, when they come back, you should isolate them, because using other people’s equipment for your own purposes is against the law.

I know they might get into your system by accident but once you use them again it’s no longer an accident, it’s called conversion and it has consequences.  The sensible thing to do is to contact us at ACQSYS and we will return them to their rightful owners.

It might seem harmless enough but it’s depriving the rightful owner of the opportunity to use a valuable asset and the law takes a dim view of that.  Our clients think the same way and that’s why you might find us knocking on your door asking for their cages back.

At the extreme end, there are some companies who never buy a cage of their own and misappropriate everyone else’s.  Indeed, one company was caught removing the original owners’ identifying marks and the directors spent some time making furniture at Her Majesty’s pleasure.

So don’t be tempted by someone else’s, find your own.

If you’re in a fix and need some roll cages fast then don’t forget you can rent them from our sister company Roll Cage Rental.

Kidnap

Posted 10-11-17, Tags: hire roll cages for Christmas, how to find lost roll cages, lost roll cages, lost transit equipment, recover rollcages, recovery of lost roll cages, rent roll cages, retail peak periods, roll cage cost savings, roll cage theft

171110_BlackHood-image-from-Top-Notch-Comics-9-wikipedia.jpg

Did you hear the story about the new roll cage starlet?  There it was, looking forward to playing its first part in a Christmas supply chain pantomime of epic proportions; practicing, rehearsing, dreaming.

In just a few week it would be delivering all sorts of goodies to the shops- such delights as would light up the children’s faces on Christmas morning and give them a day to remember.

Then suddenly, rough hands, gruff voices, dragged into the rain, a tail lift, strapped together with other cages in a van - KIDNAP!

The owner of the poor little roll cage “What do we do?  We don’t have people who can track our cage down. Call the Peelers?  I think not, no kids or animals involved. 

But wait, what about those nice people in the black vans who bring cage criminals to justice?  Yes, ACQSYS!”

ACQSYS were brought in, scoured the land, lifted every roll shutter door, peeked in every unloading bay and questioned every driver in the realm until they found our little roll cage - dusty, a bit emotional, but with a heart as big as an Amazon fulfilment centre and ready to walk the boards again.  What a trooper!

Our little friend was last seen on Oxford Street delivering Christmas crackers and looking none the worse for wear, which is more than can be said for the evil monsters who kidnapped it.

Don’t let your roll cages be kidnapped.  Call ACQSYS, we dispense justice the old fashioned way.

Image Credit: The Black Hood, from Top-Notch Comics #9 (October 1940). Art by Al Camy.

We’re in Supply Chain Strategies in The Times this week with complimentary copy for you

Posted 24-02-17, Tags: lost transit equipment, recover rollcages, roll cage recovery, rollcage rental, supply chain strategies

170224_Image-of-Supply-Chain-Strategies-(1).jpg

Some of you may have seen the Supply Chain Strategies supplement in the Times yesterday and read the stories about some of the supply chain disasters and what we can learn from them. If you want to find us we’re right next to a picture of Ed Sheeran and those 12 valuable lessons on page 13 (lucky for some). We’ll also be in this supplement in the Sunday Times this weekend. There is also an article on the internet of things (IOT) from Senior VP Hans Thalbauer at SAP and how that might affect your supply chain. 

A global map showing world trade flows for the UK, Germany, US, China, Brazil Australia and China may also be of interest for those musing on the future impacts of BREXIT and US protectionism on their global supply chains.

As we gear up for the Spring rush and the Easter holidays there will be plenty of other supply chain disasters we can prevent with our roll cage recovery and roll cage rental services. 

We thought you might enjoy reading about some of these supply chain disasters such as the one about UK retailers at Christmas in 2014 and not planning for the final mile delivery, when everyone is trying to use the same delivery company which can’t cope.

We’ve negotiated a special complimentary copy of Supply Chain Strategies for you, click to download and read your very own copy either online or offline.  

Let us know how we can prevent abuse and shortages of your transit equipment and the likely supply chain disaster which normally follows.   Contact us now.

Some of our clients

“As part of a wide network of supply chain professionals I always go to ACQSYS when I'm looking for smart asset management programmes.”

William Randall, Chief Executive LAWS Ltd

Powered by Kentico, an intelligent website by ie Intelligent Marketing