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Category Archives: SCI News

Walmart Canada and SCI Open Doors On New Facility Dedicated To Fulfilling E-Commerce Orders Across Canada

SCI Canada and Walmart Canada recently announced the official opening of SCI’s largest dedicated and purpose-built Distribution Centre (DC) in Mississauga, Ontario. At approximately 450,000 square feet, the DC is the main facility dedicated to fulfilling Walmart Canada’s online orders.

From L to R: Guy Toksoy, Vice President Operations, SCI; Chris Galindo, CEO, SCI; Alexis Lanternier, Executive Vice President E-Commerce, Walmart Canada; Daryl Porter, Vice President, E-Commerce Operations and Logistics, Walmart Canada.

The new distribution centre is a flexible, scalable solution for logistics and fulfilment that is part of Walmart’s strategy to continue growing its e-commerce business in Canada. The need is there, as Walmart Canada’s flagship website walmart.ca is visited daily by over 750,000 customers.

The company sought SCI’s support to develop a customized supply chain solution that streamlines operations.

Facts about the new DC:

  • The new DC maximizes storage through a four-level, 70,000 square foot pick platform for storing and picking smaller items and pallet racking for larger and higher volume items.
  • It is equipped with state-of-the-art intelligence software that provides real-time visibility to operations and is fully integrated with SCI’s warehouse management system.
  • It boasts automation that improves capacity and uses conveyors to transport materials to one of five zones on each level and complete pick totes to a put-wall area from both the platform and pallet racks.

“The retail business is constantly evolving and becoming more complex,” said Guy Toksoy, SCI’s Vice President Operations.

“SCI’s commitment to continuous improvement and innovation helps our clients meet increasing e-commerce demands, and we were excited to partner with one of Canada’s largest retailers to go beyond conventional logistic services and adapt an automated model to best suit Walmart Canada’s needs.”

“It’s exciting that shopping on Walmart.ca continues growing in popularity with our customers. We’ve been modernizing and innovating to ensure products can get to our customers in the quickest and most efficient way possible, without compromising on our everyday low prices and the quality customers expect,” said Alexis Lanternier, Executive Vice President E-Commerce, Walmart Canada.

“We’re proud to have partnered with SCI to create this distribution centre as it provides a customized end-to-end solution that suits our growing business needs.”

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About SCI
SCI is one of Canada’s leading providers of supply chain solutions that go beyond traditional logistics services. SCI’s tagline “We’ll make you even better” is a commitment today from a business that’s leading clients into tomorrow. Trusted by clients in the retail, e-commercetechnology, and healthcare sectors, SCI operates the most extensive national distribution and transportation network in Canada, consisting of 30 distribution centres coast to coast along with over 40 critical parts stocking locations and specialized white glove shipping hubs. SCI shares the learnings from the sectors they operate in, providing the audience with information to guide their supply chain to success through blog posts, case studies and white papers.

About Walmart Canada
Walmart Canada operates a chain of more than 400 stores nationwide serving more than 1.2 million customers each day. Walmart Canada’s flagship online store, Walmart.ca is visited by more than 750,000 customers daily. With more than 85,000 associates, Walmart Canada is one of Canada’s largest employers and is ranked one of the country’s top 10 most influential brands. Walmart Canada’s extensive philanthropy program is focused on supporting Canadian families in need, and since 1994.

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Managing White Glove Delivery Of MRI Machine To A Leading Canadian Healthcare Facility

Recently, SCI worked alongside the McGill University Health Centre on the delivery and installation of Canada’s most sophisticated heart MRI machine.

The new machine will allow the centre to carry out heart observations that are otherwise impossible, such as swelling, increased fat content and a lack of oxygen, with the hopes of faster and more accurate diagnoses. The health centre expects to carry out up to 2,500 research scans per year.

For SCI, this unique supply chain situation required a creative solution for our white glove team to deliver this high-value machine in a timely manner. SCI’s extensive experience in the delivery and installation of highly complex equipment allowed the team to build and execute a plan that ensured client success.


As part of the process, the team was equipped with handheld computers, cellular communications and GPS tracking devices to coordinate the delivery and installation while monitoring and reporting the shipment status. This $4 million, 7.7-tonne 3T General Electric SIGNA machine was shipped with the utmost care utilizing air-ride vehicles and the most up to date equipment.

On September 21, the MRI was expertly transported to the facility by highly-trained SCI personnel. One of the biggest challenges of the installation was getting the machine onto the second floor. Our solution was to cut a hole in the exterior of the building big enough to lift the machine through. Once that was complete, the team cautiously lifted the MRI by crane through the opening, onto the second floor and straight into the radiology department.

“The delivery and installation of this MRI is just one example of our expertise in white glove transportation services,” said Chris Galindo, CEO, SCI Group Inc. “These types of transfers require precise handling, special equipment and highly trained personnel to execute delivery properly and securely. We’ve also invested in the latest shipping technologies, such as two-way imaging, video feeds and temperature monitoring, to provide our clients with real time visibility to these valuable shipments.”

SCI’s continued investment into healthcare, including the launch of our healthcare-dedicated facilities in Toronto and Vancouver in 2019, have allowed us to streamline clients’ supply chain demands and reduce overall complexity so that our clients can continue to focus on customer care and research. All solutions are governed by SCI’s Quality Management System which operates rigid process controls through all areas of the supply chain. This ensures healthcare clients will effectively comply with Canadian regulatory standards and safety protocols.

Contact SCI today for more information on how our full-service end-to-end supply chain capabilities will make you even better.

 

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Defining Supply Chain Resiliency

July 27, 2020

The past two decades have been turbulent for the global supply chain as political, climate and social disruptions continue to pose significant challenges. Most recently, of course, we’ve been contending with the COVID-19 disruption.

In fact, by March of this year, the largest global companies and their suppliers had more than 12,000 factories, warehouses, and other facilities in COVID-19 quarantined areas.1 Most of these facilities have since moved out of quarantine, but the stark lessons of early 2020 underscore an urgent need for resilient supply chains.

Even after global or regional cases of COVID-19 decline, experts believe it might take years for supply chains to fully recover. This means supply chain leaders should be focusing on long-term resiliency.

Defining Resiliency

Resilience is more than a supply chain’s ability to avoid or mitigate the impact of disruptive events; it’s also the ability to recover quickly. Strategic planning needs to understand a wide range of external and internal risks and their possible impacts.

Conventional wisdom tell us that a supply chain is only as strong as its weakest link. This means the resilience strategy must extend beyond an organization’s self‐assessment to include the strengths and weaknesses of its suppliers and partners from raw materials to end consumers.

This fulsome view of the supply chain also identifies opportunities for continuous improvement programs that enable faster pivots for processes and policies as conditions change. For example, the Government of Canada is working with SCI to build resiliency in essential services supply chains through its new a contingency reserve of front-line personal protective equipment (PPE).

Strategic vs. Reactive: Recognizing the Need for Resiliency

As the need for resilient supply chains becomes more prevalent, executives are starting to recognize the important role resilience plays. By next year, almost half (47 per cent) of industry leaders will view supply chain resilience to external disruptions as a strategic priority, which is more than double the number in 2018 (22 per cent).2 Given recent events, that cohort is likely a lot larger.

Despite this attention to strategic supply chain planning and management, many organizations are stuck in a reactive mindset, where the focus is on cutting costs and squeezing out additional efficiencies. This stance limits growth, and increases vulnerability when it comes to disruptive events – the opposite of a resilient supply chain.
When supply chain teams have a seat at the strategic planning table they can get out of cost-reduction mode and start proactively finding ways to manage risk, mitigate impacts, facilitate recovery and design resiliency into every process and partnership.

Why Invest in a Resilient Supply Chain?

If you’re trying to build the business case for a more strategic supply chain management practice, consider that an analysis by Bain shows that companies with resilient supply chains grow faster because they can move rapidly to meet customers’ needs when market demands shift. The analysis also shows that a resilient supply chain increases perfect order rates as much as 40 per cent and increases customer satisfaction by as up to 30 per cent.

Understanding the top line and bottom line contributions of a resilient supply chain are key to moving beyond a reactive approach. A good place to start is working with an experienced 3PL partner that can provide an end-to-end analysis of your supply chain along with a detailed design for long-term resilience and, yes, lower costs and more efficiency.

1. Tom Linton, Bindiya Vakil, Coronavirus Is Proving We Need More Resilient Supply Chains, Harvard Business Review, March 20, 2020

2. Simon Ellis, Jeffrey Hojlo, Leveraging an Intelligent Digital Supply Chain, IDC, March 2019

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Growth leaders are improving their fulfillment capabilities

An Excerpt from “5 insights from Canada’s fastest-growing retailers” by Canada Post, 2020

Getting fulfillment right has never been more important. Not only can it save you time and money, but it can help you win repeat customers.
Growth leaders are starting to recognize that fulfillment has the power to deliver a competitive advantage, and they’re looking to third-party logistics (3PL) providers for help.
3PL providers warehouse e-commerce goods and fulfill orders on behalf of e-merchants. Though outsourcing fulfillment to 3PL providers is only somewhat higher (11%) for growth leaders than the rest of the market, growth leaders are three times more inclined than other e-merchants to say that outsourcing fulfillment will be a high priority for them over the next 12 to 18 months.
They’re also 49% more inclined to say that expanding their fulfillment capability – for example, by opening a new fulfillment centre – will be a high priority during this time frame.

Benefits of outsourcing order fulfillment
Free up more time for selling
As they scale their business, many e-merchants find the task of fulfilling orders starts to become overwhelming and takes working hours away from selling their products. If your business is facing this challenge, it might be time to consider partnering with a 3PL provider.
Reduce operating costs
When you partner with a 3PL provider, you can benefit from their operational efficiencies and may be able to leverage their buying power on packaging and shipping costs.
Improve customer service
High-quality customer service is essential to customer acquisition and loyalty. Almost half of online shoppers say they’ve avoided repurchasing from a particular retailer or abandoned their shopping cart because the customer service they received when they encountered an issue with their order was not helpful. Many 3PL providers offer 24/7 customer support for executing returns, exchanges, refunds, and more. This is accomplished via email, website, or phone.

Growth leaders are enhancing their order fulfillment process
Expert Perspectives: When asked about what they’re seeing from fast growing clients that are making the most of outsourcing fulfillment, SCI Logistics shared that they’re seeing retailers benefit most from the partner’s ability to support their needs today and prepare them for the future. With the right fulfillment partner, retailers benefit from so much more than space that can easily scale. They get access to guidance and best practice for their specific business, technology (WMS) that can help streamline their operations and expertise to help them handle fluctuations and growth curves in their business.

Pro tip: Know your business and do your research. If you’re growing quickly and have the cash on hand to outsource, third-party warehousing and fulfillment is worth exploring. However, outsourcing might not be for you if you have unique packaging needs.
Reality check: You do lose some control over how your products are shipped when you outsource fulfillment – so it’s important to find the right partner and to keep the lines of communication open, especially when it comes to inventory.

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Snapshot of Technology & White Glove Services

Even in these challenging times, we’ve been working hard to ensure we offer and deliver the most comprehensive Technology and White Glove service packages in Canada.

For a quick look at our core service offerings please see our updated 2020 Technology Infographic and contact us to further discuss how we can help you grow and support your technology business in Canada.

SCI-Technology-Services-Infographic

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How SCI is Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic

As we continue to monitor ongoing developments related to the coronavirus (COVID-19), the safety and security of our employees remains a top priority at SCI.

As a trusted supply chain partner, we are committed to helping the clients and communities who rely on our services to stay safe, keep their businesses running and get through these uncertain times.

We have deployed a national strategy that accounts for the essential functions and services performed across our locations so we can continue to provide exceptional service – all while keeping the safety of our employees and clients top of mind.

In light of this, we wanted to share more about how we are adapting our service to best support our clients and employees.

  • Our competent and professional employees remain on the frontline delivering vital supplies to healthcare facilities and essential supplies for people and businesses.
  • We’ve put in place advanced sanitation practices at our distribution centres and increased the frequency of sanitation practices.
  • Our drivers are equipped with extra products to maintain hygiene and, for the safety of our customers and themselves, will be practicing physical distancing.
  • We’re following all advice from the Public Health Agency of Canada, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and medical experts to guide our COVID-19 response and protect our employees, customers and the communities we serve.
  • We are responding to all client inquiries with speed, integrity and compassion.
  • We continue to monitor this fluid situation and will adapt, as necessary, to ensure essential services remain operational.

We’d like to thank our dedicated staff for their tireless efforts over the past few weeks. Your hard work is deeply appreciated.

We are all in this together, and we will overcome this together. Thank you for your continued trust in SCI.

Chris Galindo

President & CEO

SCI Group Inc

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