60 seconds with Shana Relle, MHIA, Intralox

Modern spends 60 seconds with Shana Relle, chair of the ISCC for MHIA and marketing for Intralox

By ·

Shana Relle
Title: Chair of the Integrated Systems & Controls Council (ISCC) for the Material Handling Industry of America (MHIA); marketing for packaging and materials handling for Intralox
Location: New Orleans
Experience: Six years in the materials handling industry
Primary Focus: The goal of the ISCC is to bring together suppliers of system components and controls with companies that put together an entire materials handling system. The focus of the automation alliance is to put a public face on the group’s efforts and educate end users on materials handling.

Modern: Are you and your colleagues in the integrated systems group seeing a rising interest level in automation
Relle: We are. And while the members within the group offer a variety of automated solutions, we’re seeing interest from customers of all sizes, across all industries and with a wide set of problems. We’re seeing customers who want to put in a large, comprehensive system, but there’s also interest in islands of automation. They may want just a small piece of automation, like putting in a piece of live conveyor to move a tire down an assembly line rather than a worker having to push it across a gravity conveyor.

Modern: Your group has a campaign to bust the myths around automation. What are some of the myths around automation?
Relle: The myths persist, but I’d say many of them are going away. For instance, people used to think that only large companies could automate. Now, according to our research, 52% believe that automation is for companies of any size, and 78% agree that automation can be retrofitted into an existing facility. We’re making headway on those two. However, 56% still believe that these systems are hard to support and maintain, even though I think that’s no longer true. Only 56% think automation is safe, yet we don’t hear reports about people being injured as a result of automation.

Modern: If myths are really being busted, what does that say about automation?
Relle: I think you’re just seeing more of it. Consumers are comfortable with the idea that goods come from Asia, and they have to be moved around a warehouse. The press about Amazon buying Kiva brings a certain amount of attention to the industry from people who haven’t paid attention in the past—a good percentage of the population is buying products from Amazon.

Modern: What does the ISCC see for the future of automation?
Relle: There are a lot of reasons for customers to automate going forward. For instance, you’re seeing more green packaging. That has to be handled very gently and precisely, which is something that automation can do. Where facilities are at capacity or want LEED certification, you’re going to see more automation. I think you’re going to see a mix of automation and non-automation, and I think that’s going to grow more and more. I also think as young people become more comfortable with personal technology, they’ll be more comfortable with robots and automation.


About the Author

Bob Trebilcock
Bob Trebilcock, editorial director, has covered materials handling, technology, logistics and supply chain topics for nearly 30 years. In addition to Supply Chain Management Review, he is also Executive Editor of Modern Materials Handling. A graduate of Bowling Green State University, Trebilcock lives in Keene, NH. He can be reached at 603-357-0484.

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Identify Cost Savings with Real-Time Visibility
To offset the impact of late shipments, unreported delays and detention, shippers are increasingly requiring 100 percent visibility into the location and status of their freight.
Download Today!
From the August 2017 Logistics Management Magazine Issue
Which carriers, third-party logistics providers, and North American ports have crossed the service excellence finish line ahead of their competitors? Our readers have cast their votes, and now it’s time to introduce this year’s winners of the coveted Quest for Quality Awards.
BMW Takes the Inland Road to Efficiency
Global Logistics: No Shortcuts to Security
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Getting the most out of your 3PL relationship
Join Evan Armstrong, president of Armstrong & Associates, as he explains how creating a balanced portfolio of "Top 50" global and domestic partners can maximize efficiency and mitigate risk.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
34th Annual Quest for Quality Awards: Winners Revealed
Which carriers, third-party logistics providers, and North American ports have crossed the service...
2017 Top 50 3PLs: Investment and Consolidation Maintain Traction
The trend set over the past few years for mergers and acquisitions has hardly subsided, and a fresh...

2017 Salary Survey: Fresh Voices Express Optimism
Our “33rd Annual Salary Survey” reflects more diversity entering the logistics management...
LM Exclusive: Major Modes Join E-commerce Mix
While last mile carriers receive much of the attention, the traditional modal heavyweights are in...