The Erdman Center’s MBA students were invited on another facility tour this month, visiting a unique Meijer distribution center along with students from the Grainger Center. We had a great tour (and a great lunch!) and would like to sincerely thank our friends at Meijer for the invitation and for their hospitality.
The faculty and students traveled to Pleasant Prairie, WI for the tour, where we were met by a fantastic group of Meijer leaders. This included Vik Srinivasan, a Group Vice President in Meijer’s Distribution operation, who provided an overview of the company and of the distribution center. We also heard from Robb Mowery and Rick Hershberger, who are directors at the distribution center, about the day-to-day operations of the facility. We learned that the Pleasant Prairie location was Meijer’s first significant investment in automation technology in one of its DCs. The automation equipment allows the facility to create outbound pallets of goods for Meijer stores more quickly and efficiently than was previously possible.
The group was then led on a tour through the over-700,000 square foot facility, where we were able to observe the process flow first-hand. We saw the work that goes into rapidly breaking inbound pallets of goods down into individual, store-specific packages, placing those packages into inventory, then calling up inventory to create outbound pallets as requested by the stores. The scale and efficiency of the process was remarkable.
Lastly the group was provided a great Meijer-catered lunch, and given lots of time for Q&A with the Meijer team. We learned about Meijer’s exciting expansion plans in Wisconsin and got more history about the company overall. We had a great tour and a great experience! All of the Meijer team members were extremely helpful and generous with their time. We would like to thank Meijer once more for the experience!