Logistics is the art and science of managing and controlling the flow of goods, energy, information and other resources like products, services, and people, from the source of production to the marketplace. It is difficult to accomplish any marketing or manufacturing without logistical support. It involves the integration of information, transportation, inventory, warehousing, material handling, and packaging. The operating responsibility of logistics is the geographical repositioning of raw materials, work in process, and finished inventories where required at the lowest cost possible.
Logistics and Supply Chain services are provided by a wide range of 3rd party suppliers.
Origins and definition
The word of logistics originates from the ancient Greek logos, which means "ratio, word, calculation, reason, speech, oration".
Logistics is a concept considered to have evolved from the military`s need to supply themselves as they moved from their base to a forward position. In ancient Greek, Roman and Byzantine empires, there were military officers with the title `Logistikas` who were responsible for financial and supply distribution matters.
The Oxford English dictionary defines logistics as: "The branch of military science having to do with procuring, maintaining and transporting material, personnel and facilities."Another dictionary definition is: "The time related positioning of resources." As such, logistics is commonly seen as a branch of engineering which creates "people systems" rather than "machine systems".
In military logistics, experts manage how and when to move resources to the places they are needed. In military science, maintaining one`s supply lines while disrupting those of the enemy is a crucial-some would say the most crucial-element of military strategy, since an armed force without food, fuel and ammunition is defenseless.
The defeat of the British in the American War of Independence, and the defeat of Rommel in World War II, have been largely attributed to logistical failure. The historical leaders Hannibal Barca, Alexander the Great and the Duke of Wellington are considered to have been logistical geniuses.
Logistics Management is that part of the supply chain which plans, implements and controls the efficient, effective forward and reverse flow and storage of goods, services and related information between the point of origin and the point of consumption in order to meet customers` requirements. A professional working in the field of logistics management is often called a `logistician
Logistics as a business concept evolved only in the 1950s. This was mainly due to the increasing complexity of supplying one`s business with materials and shipping out products in an increasingly globalized supply chain, calling for experts in the field who are called Supply Chain Logisticians. This can be defined as having the right item in the right quantity at the right time at the right place for the right price and is the science of process and incorporates all industry sectors. The goal of logistic work is to manage the fruition of project life cycles, supply chains and resultant efficiencies.
In business, logistics may have either internal focus(inbound logistics), or external focus (outbound logistics) covering the flow and storage of materials from point of origin to point of consumption (see supply chain management). The main functions of a logistics manager include Inventory Management, purchasing, transport, warehousing, and the organizing and planning of these activities. Logistics managers combine a general knowledge of each of these functions so that there is a coordination of resources in an organization. There are two fundamentally different forms of logistics. One optimizes a steady flow of material through a network of transport links and storage nodes. The other coordinates a sequence of resources to carry out some project.
The term is used for describing logistic processes within an industry. The purpose of production logistics is to ensure that each machine and workstation is being fed with the right product in the right quantity and quality at the right point in time.
The issue is not the transportation itself, but to streamline and control the flow through the value adding processes and eliminate non-value adding ones. Production logistics can be applied in existing as well as new plants. Manufacturing in an existing plant is a constantly changing process. Machines are exchanged and new ones added, which gives the opportunity to improve the production logistics system accordingly. Production logistics provides the means to achieve customer response and capital efficiency.
Article Source: Logistics
Author: nagaraja rao m r
Category: Business English - Reading