Logistics: Managing Flow With Accuracy

Logistics is defined as the art and science of controlling and managing the flow of energy, goods, products and services, people and information from the point of origin to the point of destination. Tasks such as manufacturing and marketing cannot be performed without an effective logistical support.

Logistics services from a company like Landstar trucking company can include the integration of several factors such as inventory, information, transportation, material handling and warehousing, having operating responsibility in the geographical repositioning of resources and processes such as raw materials and work-in-process.

Logistics is believed to have evolved from the armed forces need in the ancient times, to ensure that adequate supplies of resources reached them on time and in the right condition, when they moved from a base position to a forward position. The Greek and Roman empires had military officers who were assigned the task of handling all supply distribution and financial matters and were called 'Logistikas'.

With the advancement of technology, logistics automation has evolved to great heights. It refers to the application of automated machinery and computer software for enhancing the overall efficiency of operations under logistics. This may also be classified as performance of operations in a distribution center or warehouse with the primary tasks being performed by enterprise resource planning and supply chain management systems.

Logistical and supply chain support is provided by third-party logistics (3PLs) which are specialist providers of outsourced logistic services from where an effective and efficient management of goods can be done by their pick-up and delivery, on behalf of the manufacturers.

Advantages of Logistics: 1. It helps in increasing profitability. 2. It helps in lowering the operating cost. 3. It raises the flexibility besides enhancing the responsiveness to the ever-changing demands. 4. It helps in improving customer service. 5. It helps in providing technology expertise and thereby helps in delivering high quality business solutions.

Not long ago, logistics was considered to be a 'necessary evil' by the top management of various organizations. This has however been proven wrong by the tactics of retail giant Wal-Mart who transformed the previous basic paradigm of logistical management. Nowadays the top management of organizations are trying their best to draft an effective logistics plan. They are trying to employ proper human resources in the form of logistics personnel who are trained to ensure maximum benefits for the organization .

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