Logistics and Supply Chain Management (SCM) as an area of research has been getting increasing attention from academicians and practitioners over the last two decades since it may lead to reduced operational costs, improved delivery performance and increased customer satisfaction levels, thereby making an organization more competitive in terms of cost, quality, delivery and flexibility. The importance of logistics and SCM is increasing also due to globalization as more and more multi-national companies (MNC) are sourcing, manufacturing and distributing on a global scale, making their supply chains very complex to manage.
However, Outsourcing Logistics activities to experienced logistics service providers (LSP), also known as Third-party logistics (3PL) providers, may enable companies get very efficient and customized logistical support while themselves focusing on the core organizational activities. Today, there are many large multi-national LSPs that offer complete supply chain solutions across many diverse countries in terms of their socio-economic and political environments.
Apart from core logistical activities such as transportation and warehousing, LSPs also offer value-added services such as customs clearance, freight forwarding, import/export management, inventory management, assembly/installation, packaging and labeling, distribution, after sales support, reverse logistics and so on. By outsourcing logistics, companies can leverage the expertise of LSPs while concentrating on their core competencies. With the rapid advance of globalization over the last century, now more than ever is our world interconnected; every day, millions of people, ideas, culture, and goods move across international borders, creating more diverse societies and more efficient economies.
As global business competition expands, companies large and small are finding the advantages of sourcing, trading, and selling