Winter Reading Guide 2016

Winter Reading Guide 2016

Don’t let winter put a deep freeze on your logistics learning. Keep your knowledge evergreen by cozying up to books on wide-ranging topics, from food logistics to procurement practices.

North American Railroad Family Trees: An Infographic History of the Industry’s Mergers and Evolution

By Brian Solomon

Detailing a historical overview of the iconic American railroad system, this book provides insights into the families and businesses that built the U.S. rail network into what it is today. Filled with vintage photos, detailed maps, and historical accounts of the pioneers who were instrumental in the early development of rail lines across the continental landscape, this account is ideal for readers who follow American history, and are interested in how the infrastructure of North America’s transportation systems developed.

Key Takeaways: Much has been written about the rise of the American railway system, but this overview gives readers a more in-depth look into the families who were instrumental in launching the U.S. rail network. While many families still operate the short lines that serve America’s transportation infrastructure today, this account provides a historical overview of the lineage that makes up America’s privately held rail systems.

The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos And the Age of Amazon

By Brad Stone

Stone tells the story of Amazon through the eyes of Jeff Bezos’ friends and family, as well as former and current employees. Bezos’ personal story alone is one worth sharing. This book focuses not only on Amazon’s rise to super-retail prominence, but also on the company founder’s renowned management style and personality.

Key Takeaways: With Amazon’s prolific rise as a retail and supply chain leader, the story behind the company is not one to ignore. This book takes readers through Amazon’s global prosperity and unprecedented growth in tandem with the interesting story of Jeff Bezos’ management and leadership panache.

The Power of Resilience: How the Best Companies Manage the Unexpected

By Yossi Sheffi

A well-known writer in supply chain circles, Sheffi provides real-world case studies of major economic and natural catastrophes that have impacted not just certain regions of the world, but the entire global supply chain. This book centers on how organizations combat the risk of disaster in major and minor proportions, providing practical advice and recommendations on how to prepare for risks in supply chain operations.

Key Takeaways: Many companies view risk management as another cost without measurable benefit, but Sheffi addresses how best-in-class organizations create agility and present a more responsive approach when managing both minor and major disruptions in operating platforms.

The Supply Chain Game Changers: Applications and Best Practices That are Shaping the Future of Supply Chain Management

By Ted Stank, et al

With a noticeable shift taking place in the logistics landscape, three University of Tennessee-based PhDs endorse the idea that the supply chain of 2025 will look remarkably different than today’s operating platform. Drawing from best practices among leading-edge logistics-centric companies, the authors address 10 trends impacting the global supply chain, offering futuristic solutions to the complex challenges of today’s supply operating systems.

Key Takeaways: Today’s supply chains are more vulnerable than they were 10 years ago, so leaders in the logistics sector continue to assess trends and innovations tied to increased visibility, collaboration, agility, demand management, and process integration that will transpire over the next decade.

Import Practice Answer Book 2015

By Thomas J.K. Smith and David Serko

This comprehensive resource provides answers to every question a practitioner or student of importing needs to know. An excellent reference for customs compliance and international law, the book addresses important supply chain topics such as tariffs, duties, and surety bonds, and lays out the duties of customs brokers and international forwarders. The authors also address several different aspects of the import entry process.

Key Takeaways: Written by two attorneys, this book is a tremendous reference for anyone involved in importing as a principal or intermediary. Given its detail and legal angle, this guide serves as an excellent resource for those interested in pursuing the customs brokers’ licensing exam.

The Definitive Guide to Inventory Management: Principles and Strategies for the Efficient Flow of Inventory Across the Supply Chain

By Matthew A. Waller and Terry L. Esper

Written for inventory and procurement managers, this book addresses best practices and industry frameworks for optimal inventory management performance. The writing introduces basic terminology and key inventory management guidelines for newcomers and experienced practitioners alike. Written by inventory management experts in conjunction with the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals, topics include using technology in inventory planning and management, and new approaches to inventory reduction.

Key Takeaways: This book captures all aspects of inventory management and optimization, and provides a technical overview of inventory control for advanced practitioners. Central to the book’s theme is an emphasis on why inventory optimization is such an important metric for overall supply chain strategic solutions.

Strategic Sourcing in the New Economy: Harnessing the Potential of Sourcing Business Models for Modern Procurement

By Bonnie Keith, et al

Drawing on in-depth academic research, four university professors with extensive procurement experience challenge the tried-and-true model of leverage in organizational procurement, and introduce a collaborative approach to outsourcing relationships. This book is written for sourcing and procurement professionals, but it also makes a good read for those interested in the new frontier of collaboration among global supply chain partners.

Key Takeaways: A new way of thinking about the procurement process—collaboration among suppliers and vendors—is transcending the supply chain. The purchasing and sourcing game is no longer about winning and losing, instead it centers on establishing long-term, collaborative relationships among buyers and suppliers.

Food Supply Chain Management and Logistics: From Farm to Fork

By Samir Dani

Dani’s recently published book covers all aspects of the food value chain, starting with an overview of raw material suppliers and transcending to technology trends and innovation in food processing. The guide also addresses risks in the food supply chain, and various factors that affect international food logistics, substantiated by multiple case studies and industry examples. The author also explores food supply chain production and manufacturing, food regulation, safety and quality, food sourcing, food security, and future challenges.

Key Takeaways: Written for food logistics professionals, this educational book provides a comprehensive overview of all aspects of the food value chain.

Rethinking the Internet of Things: A Scalable Approach to Connecting Everything

By Francis daCosta

How will the Internet of Things (IoT) affect today’s supply chain? Data flow between machines and devices will create efficiencies in supply chain operations, advancing beyond the era of radio frequency identification used in warehouse management. This guide discusses the impact of IoT on manufacturing, everyday activities, and the overall supply chain, while providing a look into the potential of machines interfacing with devices in the future.

Key Takeaways: When machines are able to communicate with other technology and devices in order to drive low-cost connectivity, then data interchange will accelerate productivity to control more than just a home thermostat or alarm system. With the dynamic growth of digital device exchange, daCosta predicts the number of smart devices will soon surpass the number of people on earth.

Sustainable Materials—With Both Eyes Open

By Julian M. Allwood and Jonathan M. Cullen

Recommended by Bill Gates, this book takes a research approach to implementing the five most important materials that make up today’s supply source. Drawing from real-world commercial enterprises, the authors study the sustainable use of steel, aluminum, cement, plastic, and paper, and offer creative solutions for achieving manufacturing effectiveness.

Key Takeaways: By evaluating key processed materials in today’s global supply chain, the authors explore the end-to-end integration of five major commodities in the manufacturing process, and evaluate the potential of using less physical material while advocating a recycling platform for each commodity group.

A Roadmap to Green Supply Chains: Using Supply Chain Archaeology and Big Data Analytics

By Kevin L. Lyons

Lyons links the relationship between sustainability and supply chains, revealing how lean and green logistics can contribute to the planet’s health and well being. Using modern day examples of companies that embrace a sustainable operating platform, the author gives practical advice for implementing a green approach across corporate and consumer supply chains.

Key Takeaways: Dispelling the concept that implementing sustainable practices will add to the cost of logistics applications, this book emphasizes that going green doesn’t necessarily equate to spending more green. The book guides supply chain professionals through directing purchasing power to source products that fit their needs and are also sustainable.

Fashion Logistics: Insights Into the Fashion Retail Supply Chain

By John Fernie and David B. Grant

The authors address the latest supply chain trends impacting the fashion merchandising world. This book tackles all aspects of supply chain management in global fashion distribution, including sustainable and lean fashion merchandising, outsourcing, risks, omni-channel sales, and corporate social responsibility. Written in an easy-to-follow format, short case studies in each chapter relate the major topics in fashion logistics to modern-day retailing.

Key Takeaways: This book outlines the changes in the fashion retailing industry, and the implications they have on logistics. The authors also introduce the concept of "the last 50 yards", referring to the in-store consumer experience and customer service mandates in fashion retailing.

Multichannel Commerce: A Consumer Perspective on the Integration of Physical and Electronic Channels

By Manuel Trenz

What impact will multi-channel sales have on a retailer’s supply chain? This overview looks at the trending integration of online commerce versus traditional brick-and-mortar selling, and analyzes the consumers’ perspective on multi-channel retail purchasing.

Key Takeaways: Taking a technical and research-oriented approach to analyzing paradigm shifts in retail distribution, Trenz introduces the multi-channel commerce continuum, which assesses online and offline sales from the purchaser’s standpoint.

The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt

By T.J. Stiles

Written for historians and intermodal logisticians, this detailed account of Commodore Vanderbilt’s personal and professional life provides a walk through a significant era in American history, detailing the genesis of the U.S. steamship and rail industries. With his background in maritime and railroad ventures, Vanderbilt may be the undeclared father of intermodal logistics. From his humble beginnings, and with a competitive nature, Vanderbilt built an industrial empire that continues to have a significant impact on today’s logistics landscape.

Key Takeaways: Vanderbilt was one of the first pioneers of U.S. commerce. Starting as a ship fleet commodore at an early age, he ultimately built a naval empire that catapulted the United States into global maritime prominence. Complementing his shipping roots, Vanderbilt went on to develop an extensive railroad system in the United States, linking various short lines into an interconnected railway network across North America.

Port Town: How the People of Long Beach Built, Defended, and Profited From Their Harbor

By George and Carmela Cunningham

This short read details the growth of the Port of Long Beach from a marshy mud-flat to an economic powerhouse. The book provides not only an overview of the Port of Long Beach’s history, but also a look inside the entrepreneurial spirit of those who were instrumental in the port’s development and ultimate ascension to maritime prominence.

Key Takeaways: Providing an in-depth historical perspective of the port’s development, the authors highlight stories of winners and losers in the land acquisition game, and provide an inside look at the political maneuvers that eventually led to the development of North America’s largest seaport.

Logistics and Supply Chain Management Made Easy: Methods and Applications for Planning, Operations, Integration, Control and Improvement, and Network Design

By Paul A. Myerson

This recently published book will interest teaching professionals and students who study all facets of logistics and supply chain management. Myerson uses charts and detailed definitions to break down industry basics in a user-friendly, yet academic approach. The book covers the evolution of supply chain management, procurement, inventory/order management, transportation, materials handling/packaging, and reverse logistics. Key topics include supply chain sustainability and Lean management techniques.

Key Takeaways: Myerson covers every aspect of the logistics ecosystem, addressing key terms and trends. He focuses on both the basics of the industry and the complex issues facing logistics professionals.