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Navigating Technology in Waste & Recycling

Episode 31: A dynamic Spotlight Session on technology in waste and recycling from WasteExpo 2019.
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In the latest episode of our NothingWasted! Podcast, we bring you a dynamic Spotlight Session from WasteExpo 2019: “Navigating Technology in Waste & Recycling.” The discussion features: Mark Abbass, chief marketing officer for AMCS Group; Brian Giambagno, chief financial officer of The Action Environmental Group, Inc.; Thomas Toscano, president and CEO of Mr. T Carting; Mark Vescovi, chief information officer for Liberty Tire Recycling; and Dr. Armin Vogel, executive vice president of plastics and corporate board member at SSI Schäfer.

Here’s a sneak peek into the speakers’ insights:

Armin Vogel: Digitalization is always changing the business model. It’s big data driven. And we have to see that there is a difference between innovation and disruption. Innovation is keeping your business model alive and makes it more efficient. Disruption is killing your business model—your existing one. And platforms—which are mainly the winners of digitalization—are mainly disruptive … thinking in a different way from the customer base. In the end, the winner will take it all.

Mark Vescovi: One thing that’s really important is getting the data as close as we can to the decision maker. We’re finding that our employees and management really want to see the data as close as possible, so we’re implementing manufacturing performance management systems on the sites where operators can actually make the decisions or record data on why a machine isn’t working properly. The GMs [general managers] can push information to the tablets on a route so if someone calls in and wants their tires picked up that day, we can adjust accordingly.

Brian Giambagno: In our industry, change can be a little slow. We need to get buy-in from the end user and have them as part of the decision-making process. Some of our businesses were second or third generation, and we’re asking them to embrace technology, which is new. You can’t just hand technology to the guys and expect them to run with it. We’ve had to pull people out and have a champion and have that champion really embrace that technology [and] get those small wins. When we implemented our onboard computers, we did a few trucks at a time to build momentum and so the guys could start to embrace it gradually. 

Listen to the full episode below and more episodes here. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear smart insights and industry learnings!

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