Kimberly-Clark wins supply award using Dexion technology

Kimberly-Clark won the Excellence in Supply Chain Management & Distribution award at the Smart Awards 2011 held last month, reportedly due to distribution software provided by Dexion.

The Awards, held at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre, rewarded Kimberly-Clark as one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of FMCG products, including the Huggies and Kleenex ranges, trucking 35 million cases every year to fulfil more than 120,000 customer orders.

Dexion reportedly worked with Kimberly-Clark to overhaul its distribution network and create a flexible ‘buffer’ between production and final delivery to deliver cost efficiencies for both Kimberly-Clark and its clients. As a result Kimberly-Clark was able to better connect production lines and capabilities with the fluctuating demands of its national spread of customers.

This was achieved by redefining the roles of the Regional Distribution Centres (RDC’s) to build a new network that integrated end-to-end processes from production through to customer delivery via two new National Distribution Centres (NDC’s) based in South Australia and New South Wales, Dexion says.

Dexion designed and implemented the physical hub of the NDC solution, an Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) that runs 3 and 4 pallets deep all controlled by Dexion’s Real-time Distribution System (RDS).

For Kimberly-Clark, the real benefits of the new distribution network have been a result of switching from a ‘push’ to a ‘pull’ distribution strategy. Rather than producing stock and ‘pushing’ pallets around the network to where demand might be, production is now optimised, with customer demand ‘pulling’ stock through the system, the companies claim.

Kimberly-Clark has been in the news most recently for culling 170 manufacturing jobs at its site in South Australia. Angry maintenance workers spoke out about the company for its ‘unfair handling’ of redundancies.

According to Mark Barraclough, Dexion’s Executive General Manager ANZ, “Dexion are very proud to have successfully integrated a complex solution for Kimberly-Clark. Our team worked tirelessly to bring about this project on time and on budget. With Kimberly-Clark setting the new gold standard in FMCG distribution it is only fitting that they picked up gold at Smart Awards 2011.”

Mario Carniato, e-business supply chain Manager at Kimberly-Clark said, “To be recognised by a panel of experts as having the best demonstration of excellence in supply chain is just fantastic for everyone involved!”