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22 Wednesday, November 20, 2013


AFFLINK’s eLev8 Offers Answers Where Many Distributors are Still Struggling with the Questions Information-gathering systems and

analytical tools have received little atten- tion from the media in our world. Yet, a Bloomberg BusinessWeek Research Ser- vices survey found that these tools are expected to become increasingly impor- tant in both the FM market and many re- lated supply chain industries in the com- ing years. The survey (conducted in the summer of 2012 and published in January 2013) asked 318 directors, managers, and C- level executives from around the world— almost all of whom are involved in their organizations’

supply chain manage-

ment—about what types of information- gathering systems and analytical tools they use now and what they expect to use or consider using by 2014.* These are some of the key findings of

the survey: • Eighty percent of respondents indi- cated that “better demand and forecasting tools” will be necessary in their business operations by 2014. • According to 78 percent, systems that

allow distributors to collaborate with their customers and suppliers will become a bigger concern by 2014 • Seventy-six percent and 77 percent, respectively, indicated that supply chain analytics and sales and operating planning will become more pressing issues next

For many of these respondents, the re- cent financial crisis has had a twofold im- pact. When the economy started to sputter in 2008, many organizations initially held off on or curtailed investing in analytical tools, which are defined as advanced soft- ware programs or Web-based technologies that allow companies to reduce operating costs by making more accurate purchasing and forecasting decisions. An example of this is the eLev8® process from AFFLINK. However, the downturn also eventually

drove many companies and supply chain executives to explore the many benefits of these tools. This is because real-time

year. • Nearly 80 percent indicated that sup-

ply network traceability will be a top issue for them by 2014.

Las Vegas

information often becomes all the more critical during economic downturns, es- pecially when it comes to making pur- chasing decisions. When money is tight,

tion and supply chain issues, at the top of the list in importance—and one that is spe- cific to the FM industry—was the need for planning tools that improve supply fore- casting. According to some of the survey’s respondents, the ability to forecast product and supply needs is critical to reducing business operation costs over time. Many sectors, including healthcare, hos-

organizational pressure to spend wisely, reduce costs, and make more prudent purchasing decisions takes on increasing importance. “The supply chain is a very complex

problem that you have to solve in real time,” says David Dobrin, President of B2B Analysts. “Sales operations and planning [are] where the rubber hits the road—they are the keys to aligning supply and demand.” For many executives and organizations, these lessons, once learned, become a part of standard operating procedure. Reduc- ing costs, improving product availability, and upgrading supply chain capabilities remain high on the list of priorities even as the economy begins to recover and many sectors and companies once again focus their efforts on growth and expansion. First and Foremost: Accurate Fore- casting

While the Bloomberg BusinessWeek survey investigated a number of distribu-

pitality, government and education, could also benefit from the use of these analyti- cal tools. In our own industry, forecasting tools allow facility maintenance distribu- tors to accurately address their customers’ product needs. And, these assessments are especially helpful when it comes to paper and cleaning products, leading to cost- effective purchasing decisions—a major money-saver when budgets are tight. These systems provide much greater ac- countability, accuracy, transparency, trace- ability, and sustainability for supply chain management. According to the Bloomberg BusinessWeek survey, a clear majority of executives and other thought leaders in this area believe that these tools can re- duce operating costs and improve product availability as well. *About the survey: About half of the respondents were selected from compa- nies with annual sales of $100 million to $1 billion; the rest were in $1 billion to $5 billion companies. The largest business sector from which respondents were pulled was manufac- turing and industrial; others were retail/ wholesale, followed by business and finan- cial services. n


New Operating System Makes It Possible to Clean Twice As Much For Less

Intellibot Robotics LLC (“Intellibot”) is pleased to make three major announce- ments:

1) the introduction of the Hydro 17 machine, 2) a new Hands-Free Cleaning Oper- ating System, and 3) the Intelli-Trak remote monitoring system.


Intellibot is the sole manufacturer


Hands-Free (robotic) commercial floor clean- ers.

“We are very excited about our three new technological advances,” said Erick Frack, Presi- dent. “We have a new Hands-Free scrubber called Hydro 17 which is a smaller version of the HydroBot – a scrub- ber for hard surfaces.” Frack noted that the new scrubber has a 17” cleaning swath so is perfect for cleaning floors in smaller areas – aisles and hallways – in buildings such as schools, hospitals, hotels, and retail stores. (See image below.) “We are also announcing our new Hands-Free Cleaning operating system,” Frack

continued. AD WALDENS 2013 ISSA Facility Product Selection FINAL PRINTER.indd 1 10/31/2013 10:15:12 AM “This new system means you can quickly switch from man-

ual to Hands-Free operation at the touch of a button, and simply walk away.” Frack noted that the new system allows for: • true multi-tasking – one person can accomplish twice the work • better cleaning – the machines con-

sistently clean the same area, at the same speed, with the same overlapping cover- age, every time, every day • reduced cost –

double, triple or qua- druple productivity without increasing la- bor, which means cost per square foot is dra- matically reduced “Finally, we have a

new remote monitor- ing

software system

called Intelli-Trak─ which provides real- time reports noting who ran the machine, time it ran, areas

cleaned, duration, and any problems,” added Frack.

He noted that Intelli-Trak─

monitoring allows for remote diagnostics and repairs that reduce down time and ser- vice fees. The new Hands-Free Cleaning machine

and new Operating System advancements will be on display at the ISSA trade show. n

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