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What is Logistics?

Logistics is a complex process with interconnected parts. Explore the intricate world of logistics and discover FreightCenter's involvement.

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What is Logistics?

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Logistics is the comprehensive process involving planning, managing, and controlling the efficient movement, storage, and reverse flow of goods, services, and related information from their origin to their destination, the consumer.

It is part of the supply chain but not the supply chain itself. The supply chain refers to the network of production development, from raw materials to finished goods, transported from producers to warehouses to retailers and consumers, and research and data analysis in improving the supply chain for the future.

Logistics represents the second half of the supply chain process—the actual movement of products. This involves a complex web of interconnecting parts, including:

  • Warehousing
  • Receiving
  • Inventory management
  • Transportation management
  • Distribution (packing and shipping)
  • Order fulfillment

 

Originally, “logistics” was a military term describing the movement of military equipment and supplies from one area to another during battle. Today, it refers to complicated plans involving multiple steps. For instance, a mother planning her family’s summer vacation might say, “Our trip to Disney World is a logistical nightmare!”

In the economic and business world, logistics specifically pertains to supply chain management. Every step in the supply chain process—from when a product leaves the manufacturer to arriving at a customer’s door—requires interlinking pieces working together efficiently and productively.

Successful logistics management helps decrease production costs, control access across the supply chain, ensure punctual delivery times, and satisfy customer demand. Ineffective logistics management leads to production delays, delivery delays, inadequate customer satisfaction, and poor sales.

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  • 2021, 2017 & 2016 Food Logistics’ Top Green Providers
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Why Choose FreightCenter for Freight Shipping?

Expertise in Freight Shipping: With over 25 years in the logistics industry, FreightCenter is dedicated to guiding you through the entire logistics process, from beginning to end. Our goal is to make freight shipping easy to understand and book. Don’t waste time researching and receiving quotes from individual carriers- FreightCenter’s got your back!

Competitive Rates with Tailored Solutions: We prioritize high-quality customer service without breaking your wallet. We utilize our relationships with regional and national carriers to offer you competitive, affordable rates while providing personalized solutions to your needs. Need a liftgate? We got you! Want to expedite your order? Leave it to us! We’re ready to provide tailored solutions that don’t compromise your freight shipment.

Personalized Customer Support: FreightCenter is committed to satisfying our customers. Our friendly customer support team is here to help you every step of the way, from initial inquiries to post-shipment concerns. We handle all aspects of logistics, including tracking, paperwork, and communication with carriers, so you can focus on your business while we manage your shipment. Choose us for our reliable service and affordable quotes!

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The Logistics Process In Detail

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Logistics involves multiple steps within the supply chain. A quick summary of the order of logistics is as follows:

  1. Start of the Process: Determining where the logistics process starts in the supply chain is challenging. Some argue it begins when a good or service leaves the manufacturer, while others say it starts earlier when raw materials are supplied to the manufacturer. Either way, the process starts once products are ready to be distributed to consumers.
  2. Storage: Products are sent to a warehouse to be recorded and stored until an order is placed.
  3. Order Handling: When a customer orders a product, the warehouse staff retrieves it from storage and labels it.
  4. Packaging and Shipping: The product is packaged and shipped using a mode of transportation, such as truck, air, ocean, or rail.
  5. Delivery: The product arrives at a retailer to be sold or is delivered directly to the customer.

 

Coordination and cooperation are essential for a successful logistics strategy. If one element fails to come together on time, the rest of the steps will falter. For instance, if a product cannot be found in a warehouse due to improper recording, it cannot be delivered on time, leading to delays and dissatisfied customers. Thorough planning is crucial for every aspect of logistics, no matter how minute.

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Adequate Logistics…

  • Helps Businesses Gain Control Across the Supply Chain: Companies seek revenue growth and efficient, uninterrupted business. Full control of the product’s journey through the supply chain helps achieve business goals, which proper logistics management is a part of.
  • Cuts Production Costs: The logistics industry represents a significant investment. By 2022, the U.S. business logistics costs had soared to approximately $2.3 trillion. Efficiencies in logistics operations are crucial for controlling expenses, enabling businesses to continue investing in their supply chain.
  • Ensures Deliveries are Punctual: Getting freight to its destination on time is one of the primary goals of logistics. Successful deliveries ensure the continuous flow of the supply chain and contribute to higher sales.
  • Satisfies Customers: Customer satisfaction is crucial in every aspect of the supply chain and logistics management. Satisfied customers generate sales and drive demand for products and services.

 

Inadequate Logistics…

  • Cripples Business: Poor logistics management automatically leads to issues that hinder economic growth and ongoing business operations.
  • Forces Production and Delivery Delays: Interruptions in the supply chain can interrupt ongoing logistical processes, leading to product creation and distribution delays.
  • Frustrates Customers: No one enjoys delayed or damaged packages, which can lead to customer dissatisfaction and decreased sales due to negligent logistics issues.

 

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Frequently Asked Questions about Logistics

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Q. Are logistics and supply chain the same thing?

A.

No, logistics and supply chain are not synonyms. The supply chain is the entire product production, distribution, and analytics network. Logistics is the distribution side of the supply chain; more specifically, it is the planning and management of product movement from manufacturers to retailers and consumers. Logistics, however, has nothing to do with negotiations with suppliers or the product manufacturing process, which are some of the supply chain management duties.

Q. What are some issues affecting logistics management?

A.

Problems plaguing logistics management are both external and internal. Some internal issues that can arise within logistics include losing orders within the warehouse and during deliveries, driver and warehouse staff shortages, lack of coordination between logistics participants, and poor planning. Some external factors hindering logistics include weather delays, national holidays, cargo theft, and customs delays for international shipping. All of these problems negatively impact both logistics and supply chain management, crippling businesses, and dissatisfying customers.

Q. Why is it important for logistics management to be successful?

A.

If one link in the supply chain is faulty, the whole chain is vulnerable to breaking. Poor management can lead to products not being delivered on time and terrible sales. Logistics management requires precise planning and organizing so everything runs smoothly, and all participants (businesses, manufacturers, retailers, and customers) are left satisfied.

Q. How are freight brokers a part of logistics?

A.

Freight brokerages are the intermediaries between the complex world of logistics and the average business and consumer. They use their expertise and knowledge to guide first-time shippers through booking a freight shipment, including finding carriers, selecting additional services, and filing paperwork. Without brokerages, many businesses or consumers would get confused and disgruntled over how to book a shipment or which carriers to book with.

3 Advantages of Freight Shipping With FreightCenter

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25+ Years of Service

We have over 25 years of experience, as evidenced by our large network of professional carriers. Our knowledgeable team of shipping experts is ready to help you optimize your small business for the intricate world of logistics.

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Need a liftgate? No problem! Need to ship your products quickly? We got you covered! Our FreightCenter agents can offer you tailored solutions for your specific shipping needs, no matter what kind of small business you are.

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Friendly Customer Support

Our customer support team has the answers to many of your shipping questions and concerns. We’re here to help you through every step of the shipping process, from initial inquiries to post-shipment issues.