For the past few years we have worked with the UNT Logistics and Supply Chain Program to invest in our future logisticians. I have to admit though, as a UNT alum myself, I have a certain bias towards this University and all its students. Every semester, we provide senior level students with a case study describing a scenario that could very well happen in real life. As someone who has been in the industry for over 30 years, these case studies are based on real life scenarios that I have witnessed throughout my career. These case studies allow the students to take all the knowledge they have absorbed from a textbook and apply it to a realistic situation.
This year’s case study focused on a manufacturer’s need to meet their customer’s demands. The scenario described a customer who increased the number of delivery days in a week due to high demand from consumers. As the number of delivery days went up, so did the amount of product needing to be produced and delivered. Although this manufacturer had the capacity to produce the amount of product needed, transportation expenses began to increase and became a concern for the manufacturer. They did not want to lose their customer’s business, so they needed to find a way to meet the demands of their customer without compromising cost or quality of service. The students were challenged with analyzing the manufacturer’s distribution network within a 10 month period in order to calculate total landed cost and then find the least landed cost to each destination. All relevant data, such as RPM, miles to each destination, fuel surcharges, and volume was provided to the students. This year, the students were to position themselves as the key logistics specialist for the actual company. In this role as a team member of the manufacturer, the students needed to present their proposal to their C- level bosses with the goal of convincing them that they are capable of meeting the delivery demands cost-effectively as well as providing substantial solutions in regards to savings and reducing errors in order fill. They were also introduced to “code” issues or shelf life. It was during this phase that they realized they only had perhaps 7-10 days from QC release to delivery in order to have the product arrive with the proper code remaining.
This past December, there was a total of 8 teams, who all gathered at our Frisco office to present their final analysis and proposal. Each team proposed some unique and intriguing solutions. As a veteran of the industry, I was certainly impressed by the hard work that was poured into these projects and could tell that each of these students will prove to be a valuable asset to our industry. As I read each analysis and proposal, I was reminded of the larger concept that fresh eyes offer fresh and unique ideas. I look forward to the new and unique ideas these future logisticians will add to our industry.
Each member of the winning teams received a cash scholarship at the end of the competition. The members of the first place team each received $300, the members of the second place team received $200, and the third place team members received $100.
I truly enjoy working with these students every semester – their passion and hard work gives me confidence that the future of our industry will be in good hands! I look forward to working with more bright students from UNT as well as witnessing the value these past students will add to the transportation and Supply Chain industry.
December 2016’s UNT Capstone students
Jeremy Ramirez, Taylor Schutt, Samantha Herrera, Amy Whitling
Second Place Team:
Kyle Schroeder, Garrett Vosberg, Alex Blackard, Brad Burgdorf, Shashika Athulathmudali
Third Place Team:
Dickson Gurrola, William Schick, Andrea Santos, Esmeralda Rosas, Barkha Jivnani