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Logistics is one of those aspects of business that never gets the notoriety it deserves, until something goes wrong. Good logistics is a precise science that includes many different factors. The people who spend their entire careers dedicated to developing good logistics are the kinds of people who are able to bring together several separate operations and get them to all work in harmony.
The first part of any good logistics plan is a reliable manufacturing schedule. Logistics is all about getting product from one point to another. If there is no product, then there is no need for good logistics. Most delivery schedules get held up at this very first point in the process where the product is not available for shipping as expected.
An efficient shipping group is extremely organized and has a pickup and delivery schedule set up with its shipping partners that runs like clockwork. When you see a sign on a loading dock that gives the times that the company accepts deliveries, you can rely on the fact that the company watches that schedule closely and will not stray from it.
Each logistics group has its own deadlines that it uses to make sure that it gets products on their way so that they can be delivered as promised. There are customers who are making scheduling plans based on the arrival of the product that has been ordered. When logistics breaks down, money is lost and a client may decide to find a more reliable vendor.
A good logistics company has a reliable network of vehicles that it uses to transport products from one point to the other. These days, it takes more than just a few vans and a big rig to be a reliable shipping company. The United States Department of Transportation estimates that around 61 percent of all products in North American are shipped via truck. That leaves 39 percent of all commerce to be shipped by rail, air and boat. If you want to be good at logistics, then you need to be able to get products to where they need to go by any means possible.
Another element of effective logistics is a network of reliable warehouses. Many companies cut down on shipping costs and times by putting warehouses close to their busiest markets. For example, a company based in Ohio will look at setting up a warehouse in Southern California because it sends 30 percent of its products to San Diego. Not only will the company realize cost savings with a good network of warehouses, but it will also be able to attract more customers because of its extensive shipping network.
Technology has helped to make logistics much more effective and that includes the power of the Internet. A company that is proficient in shipping products can track a product from its origin point to its location and have a detailed accounting of everywhere the product went in-between. This kind of data can help the company to develop betting shipping routes and improve service to its customers.
There is a lot more to logistics than packing a product in a box and putting it on a truck. Every mile that a truck travels costs a company money. When a company can find ways to improve its logistics, then it will save money on its overall operations and improve its service to its customers. The corporate world does billions of dollars each year in logistics, which makes moving products and people extremely important. By using the latest innovations in technology and processes, a company can deliver its products while saving money at the same time.