what is logistics

Topics: Logistics, Supply chain management, Management Pages: 4 (789 words) Published: August 17, 2014

What is Logistics?
Overshadowed behind all the excitement given to supply chain management and the technology developed to support it is a lesser known part of the business operations known as logistics. Some might regard logistics as mundane and staid compared to other supply chain initiatives but they don’t get the whole picture. However, logistics professionals and knowledgeable managers know that to fulfill customer orders effectively and efficiently, a business should employ a good logistics system and processes together with the supply chain to build up and sustain competitive advantage and profitability. So what is logistics all about? We can trace logistics’ roots back to the 18th century in Europe when a logistics officer was responsible for encamping and quartering all the troops as well as stocking the supply depots which included food, fuel, spare parts and personnel. Logistics has been reinvented and is being applied to all establishments. Logistics management is the most widely accepted term and encompasses logistics not only in the private business sector but also in the public/government and nonprofit sectors. In the 1960’s, the logistics concept began to appear in the business-related literature under the name of physical distribution, which had a focus on the outbound side of the logistics system and the military began to focus on engineering dimensions of logistic which are reliability, maintainability, configuration management, life cycle management and etc. Then in 1970’s and 1980’s, the business sector approach to logistics developed into inbound logistics (materials management to support manufacturing) and outbound logistics (physical distribution to support marketing). Finally in the 1990’s, the business sector began to view logistics in the context of supply or demand chain that linked all of the organizations from the supplier’s supplier to the customer’s customer because supply chain management requires a collaborative,...
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