Friday, 30 April 2010

What is Supply Chain Logistics?

This may not be a question that comes up over dinner with the kids that often but in business more and more companies are looking in to for a variety of solutions.  The first thing that you have to think about in the whole process is – in terms of your product – where exactly it is going to be made.  In order to make the right choice of manufacturer you have to factor in just where they will be getting their raw materials – and how that might be passed on to you in terms of cost.

Next, you have to think about getting the finished product to what is known as your fulfilment center – which is one way of saying where you will sell it (retail outlets or otherwise).  This is generally known as . If you operate in the same country as the manufacturer that makes things easier as if it is made abroad then you will have to then think about getting it to where you are – and the world of container shipping then becomes an issue.

So, while transportation may be fairly cheap at the moment, what if a small (or large!) war occurs somewhere along the route or oil prices go sky high (it has happened before) and the cost of getting your product to where you are going to sell it goes up, up and up?    This is something that has to be factored in.  Of course, when your product gets to you it isn’t quite over.   The of your supply chain can be daunting to say the least.

The supply line doesn’t end at your door.  It only ends when your product reaches the customers in a satisfactory manner and that means taking in to account the ordering and shipping of your product, not to mention the all important stocking.  If it isn’t in stock you can hardly sell it.  Fortunately, there are companies like who are experts at this and are more than willing and able to help you out.