IT in the Warehouse: Learning New Skills

Nearly 100 years ago, Henry Ford startled the world with his venture into the unknown and, in the process, established a base line for what has become the standard for industrial manufacturing.  The simple Ford assembly line has now become the basis for massive productivity gains around the world.

The major difference is that in today’s manufacturing facility, unlike in the facilities of Ford’s era, parts to be assembled may come from across the world and are not generally housed in the manufacturing plant. In today’s facility, as each product goes down the traditional assembly line, add-ons are queued up via advanced software programs that integrate the desired part in time with the position on the line. Thus, the procurement of the necessary part is a collaborative effort amongst suppliers, vendors, and the manufacturer. It requires warehousing/distribution and logistics coordination that are the heartbeat of the supply chain. Information Technology has become a necessity and advanced enterprise platforms enable a skilled workforce to make huge productivity gains via logistics.

As jobs in the manufacturing sector diminish, the need for trained and qualified personnel in the warehousing/distribution field is accelerating.  It is estimated that there will be nearly 8 million jobs created in the supply chain field within the next 10 years. this is information was garnered through the MHIA – Material Handling Equipment Manufacturers Forecast, based on data from sources such as the members of the Material Handling Industry of America, the Department of Commerce and Global Insights. According to these data, many of these new workers will be using advanced technologies.

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