Friday, October 26, 2012
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Members of the National Taxi Workers Alliance receive their AFL-CIO charter. A union is a democratic organization of employees in a workplace who choose to join together to achieve common goals. By forming unions, employees can work collectively to improve working conditions, including wages and benefits, hours and job safety, to resolve disagreements of employees and employers and to find the best ways to get the work done.Unions also represent members and all people who work by advocating working family-friendly laws and policies through legislative and political action. Most people who work in this country have the right to form and join unions under the 1935 National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), which encourages union formation. Yet millions of workers, such as farm laborers, domestic workers and managers, are not covered by the NLRA. Many of them, though, are organizing and partnering with the AFL-CIO to gain workplace rights.
Saturday, October 13, 2012
By Bill Dries FedEx Corp. founder and CEO Fred Smith ended 10 hours of immersion for analysts and investors in changes at the Memphis-based corporation Wednesday, Oct. 10, by telling the group of 200, “I think maybe we arrived at a better strategy through the wrong process.” Asked directly if FedEx’s three-year transformation plan would be happening if FedEx Express hadn’t been hit hard by a lingering recession, Smith said yes. But perhaps it would be under different terms. Asked if the plan to add $1.7 billion a year in profitability, most of it through cuts in employees and other cost reductions, would continue if the economy somehow resumes 3 to 4 percent growth, Smith again said yes. What followed the short answers in both cases was as interesting as the numbers and repeated confidence expressed by the tier of executives just below Smith on the management chart. “Of course the business has deteriorated. That’s why we’ve done this,” Smith said of Express, the corporation’s oldest and largest division – the one with the worldwide fleet of cargo jets. “When we started going into fiscal year ’13, we were all thumping our chest thinking this is going to be a record year.” The reason for the optimism as recently as February and March was that growth in international trade for decades had averaged twice the global gross domestic product. FedEx is a company tied closer than most to gross domestic product. And for Smith the growth in trade is confirmation of his belief that the force of markets like China joining the world economy is one stronger than the recession. “There were recessions,” Smith said of decades past. “But there was a clear secular integration of the world economy.” Smith then expressed concerns, as he has in recent months, about the impact fiscal and monetary policies in Europe, China and the U.S. have had on that growth beyond the impact of the recession. “I’m not sure you can assume that is the same going forward that has been the case looking back. Our assumption is that it won’t be the same,” he added of economic growth in relation to global GDP growth. And he emphasized the cost-cutting measures remain in place even if the assumption is wrong. Of course the business has deteriorated. That’s why we’ve done this. When we started going into fiscal year ‘13, we were all thumping our chest thinking this is going to be a record year.” –Fred Smith “I can promise you that stuff goes to the bottom line like Sherman through Georgia. But we’re not counting on it as part of our plan,” Smith said. FedEx Chief Financial Officer Alan Graf resisted giving out any numbers on the coming voluntary buyouts until Wednesday’s final recap. The cost of the buyout plan will be approximately $600 million, which the company will divide over two fiscal years. Smith acknowledged the buyout and what follows if enough employees don’t take them will likely affect thousands of FedEx workers across a company that employs 35,000 worldwide. “We can’t just cut off an arm,” Graf said. “We have to do this by design and make sure our service levels improve. It depends on the take rate and how long we may need them to stay.” Some of that might be through attrition, which Smith said the Express and Services division see a lot of each year among employees working in direct volume-related areas. “Some of the folks will have to go to work at a different location to get the advantage of that,” he said of the impact on others. “We just don’t need as many people shuffling papers to clear items when we have the items online. You don’t need as many couriers and handlers when you have a system that allows you to schedule your work before it even comes into the station.” Eliminating those parts in what amounts to a transformation of FedEx’s technology is what Smith, Graf and other executives say was already under way when Express’ successful model met the ongoing recession and the policy decisions that have meant slow growth and slow trade depending on the continent. FedEx Chief Information Officer Rob Carter, who has been leading the move across the divisions to common information technology platforms, said he and his team found 237 systems in the corporation that managed addresses in some way. There were 302 address databases. “That’s not a particularly pretty picture,” he said. “We’re building these enterprise foundational services … with 80 percent less complexity and code and sprawl from the history of our applications.” Carter is working on four of the services – address, customer, label and clearance. And in January, Carter says FedEx Freight’s integration into the fedex.com framework should be complete. The FedEx global sales force is using common software – salesforce.com. The work won’t eliminate all of the differences in function. For instance, Express and Ground workers now use the same handheld computers but with different software.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Published: Wednesday, October 10, 2012, 10:04 a.m. Updated 2 hours ago NEW YORK — FedEx Corp., the world’s second-largest package delivery company, on Wednesday detailed its plan to boost profit by $1.7 billion annually by shedding jobs, aircraft and underused assets. FedEx aims to reach that goal within three years through cost cuts and efficiency improvements. The much anticipated restructuring is a response to a shift by customers to slower, less expensive means of delivery as the global economy struggles to grow. Founder and CEO Fred Smith said most of the cost cuts will come in the company’s Express and Services units, which have been hurt the most by the global economic conditions. Smith said a voluntary buyout program announced in August should reduce “fixed head count by several thousand people.” A majority of those employees are in the United States. Express is where FedEx got its start in 1971, and it is still the company’s biggest segment by far. The division moves 3.5 million packages on an average day, mostly by air. It’s been hit hard as customers shift to slower delivery methods, such as trucks or ships, to save money. Also, as technology products get lighter, FedEx charges less to ship them. FedEx has been disposing of older aircraft and reducing flights to reduce the unit’s costs. Express reported revenue of $26.5 billion in the latest fiscal year and has more than 146,000 employees worldwide — roughly two-thirds of those are in the U.S. The Services unit is FedEx’s logistics division, but it also includes FedEx Office, formerly Kinko’s. It was formed in 2000 and with annual revenue of $1.7 billion in fiscal 2012, is one of FedEx’s smallest units. It has 13,000 employees, all based in the U.S. Some of the money will be saved through improved technology that allows FedEx to streamline staff and operations, Smith said. It’s also trimming overhead. “The key is striking the right balance between volume growth and yield improvements,” Smith said in a statement following the Tuesday opening of a meeting with investors and lenders in Memphis. “With slow economic growth, however, the cost-reduction programs we will describe ... are also essential to achieve our financial goals.” FedEx spelled out more details of the plan during the meeting’s second day. At the start of Wednesday’s session, FedEx slightly reduced its growth outlook for the U.S. economy from just a month ago. It maintained its forecast for global growth. Among the cost cuts included in the company’s plan: expected savings of $700 million through a slim-down of its network — half overseas and half at home. It expects to save about $300 million in fuel and other costs from using newer planes, and $400 million by making staff more efficient and eliminating redundancies. About half of the cost reductions are expected to be put in place in the current fiscal year that ends in May. The rest will be implemented in the following fiscal year. The company assured investors that it won’t cut back too much — or too quickly — and hurt its revenue growth. FedEx shares rose 5.2 percent, or $4.41, to close at $89.99. That’s the biggest one-day percentage gain since December. Read more: http://triblive.com/business/headlines/2752945-74/fedex-company-growth-cost-fiscal-plan-billion-cuts-million-smith#ixzz28znerv91 Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook
Sunday, October 7, 2012
Friday, October 5, 2012
Press Release: FedEx Express – Mon, Oct 1, 2012 8:00 AM EDT MEMPHIS, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- FedEx is offering added connections and peace of mind for global customers who require the highest level of reliable monitoring for their time and temperature-sensitive shipments. FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (FDX) is rolling out a broad expansion of its ‘Priority Alert’ and ‘Priority Alert Plus’ inbound and outbound services—introducing them to more than 70 countries that span the globe via www.fedex.com/peaceofmind. These contract-only services, which had been exclusive to the United States, will also be offered domestically within Mexico, the United Arab Emirates, Switzerland, India and Canada. Wrapped with a bright pink tape, FedEx Priority AlertTM packages stand out from the rest, signaling their priority status when it comes to loading and unloading. Because FedEx Priority Alert customers ship critical materials for the financial, aerospace, electronics, manufacturing and healthcare industries, they need to know their packages are well monitored when minutes matter most. This is why the service also offers 24/7 support from a team of dedicated global service analysts. These specially-trained analysts provide an added level of proactive monitoring and notification of the status of a shipment, whether it’s moving through the United States or internationally. FedEx Priority Alert PlusTM goes one step further—proactive recovery. Designed primarily for the unique needs of the healthcare industry, Priority Alert Plus includes added services to preserve critical shipments, such as dry ice replenishment, gel pack reconditioning and access to cold storage to help keep potentially life-saving shipments safe, and to protect the integrity of the contents from start to finish. “While speed and reliability are key requirements for today’s global supply chains, providing end-to-end visibility with 24/7 monitoring and recovery measures meets another vital requirement—agility,” said Carl Asmus, vice president of Market Development for FedEx. “With the global expansion of our Priority Alert services we can improve customer service by offering priority boarding and monitoring services for their critical international shipments.” The global expansion of these monitoring services also highlights the company’s commitment to strategic international growth designed to make the global marketplace more accessible to our customers.
Monday, October 1, 2012
FedEx Express Rate Hike Could Hit Slower Service Users Hardest Mark Szakonyi, Associate Editor | Sep 19, 2012 7:34PM GMT The Journal of Commerce Online Pricing imbalance reflects carrier's attempt to stave off shift to lower-cost options FedEx Express users of slower services will bear more of the brunt of the parcel carrier's price hike than shippers that use faster options, as the company works to slow shippers from shifting to cheaper delivery options,