Logistics Management 101: Critical Improvements
13 Aug 2021
Logistics management is the backbone of any operating business since it ensures that supply chain management, shipping and delivery work in the most efficient way possible. For businesses that wish to succeed, improving their logistics is the first step to improving operational productivity and efficiency.
Every business has different needs in terms of logistics. Some require better communication with their suppliers whereas others improve transportation of goods by working with reliable partners, like a commercial dealer of Volvo trucks. No matter what your logistic strategy is, keep in mind that there’s always room for improvement in any area of your logistics management.
If you don’t know where to start, consider the following tips to optimize your logistics management.
Evaluate and Redefine Your Standard Operating Procedures
Help your team work as a cohesive unit (while minimizing production inefficiencies) by changing some aspects of your standard operating procedures (SOPs). Initially, this may seem like a small step that may not yield results, but you’ll be surprised at how improving the core procedures can drastically improve your logistics for the better.
Start by improving the flow of information across the logistics chain. Implement a double-checking system to reduce duplicate shipments and human error, print and display important policy terminologies across the company, clarify the responsibilities of each team member and use analytics to understand sales flow trends and market behaviour.
Facilitate a Dialogue Between Employees
Your employees’ behaviour represents the character of the business. In turn, they also represent the business and its objectives. By strengthening your relationship with the team, you can strengthen the entire business.
To establish a culture of success, start with a conversation. Talk to your people and learn more about their experiences in logistics.
Consider the following strategies:
• Listen to what they say. Similar to how you shouldn’t assume about what your customers think, take the time to listen to the thoughts of your employees.
• Be transparent about company decisions. If an employee offers a suggestion that doesn’t align with your plans, let them know respectfully. Explain to them why their suggestion may not work but work with them on another solution.
• Take advantage of the little moments. Leaders should come out of their offices and talk with their people every day. A simple conversation about your employee’s day can give you much insight into your logistics, too.
The secret to success lies in your relationship with your employees. Remember, respect is earned, not given.
Examine Transportation and Restructure Your Strategy for Time/Cost Efficiencies
Transportation is one of the largest expenses in logistics, especially if you fail to properly plan for it. It can also drastically impact your return on investment and delivery schedules, especially if the goods are damaged during the move. No matter what your business is, a rise in transportation costs automatically results in an increase in the price of goods.
Improve your transportation process by analyzing all areas of it to determine your highest expenses. Star with the load planning and delivery route; use truck scales to carry more load and choose the safest route for your drivers. Consider improving your product packaging to minimize the weight and size without compromising its security.
Learn from the Competition
Inspiration is everywhere – even in your competitors. For this reason, businesses shouldn’t overlook studying their competitors by considering them as a free source of knowledge.
Some things business leaders can study are the following:
• Modern software systems
• New methods of logistics management
• Efficient staff training programs
By learning which practices work for your competitors, you can stay ahead and updated with industry updates.
Optimize Warehouse Management for Maximum Productivity
A streamlined warehouse management system positively impacts everything from your product quality to lead time and inventory management. Effective operations are defined by many factors: the type of products you offer, the type of warehouse environment and more.
Regardless of the items, you store in your warehouse, you can always improve certain areas of your strategy to speed up operations and maximize storage space. For example, use vertical columns and industrial weighing scales to weigh goods quickly and more accurately.
Keep Your Customers Informed
A seamless logistics management process results in great customer service, which is the fuel for more returns on your investment. Consumers are more willing to spend on businesses that provide quality customer service.
Your customers are the lifeline of your business. Not only do they have the power to buy, but their opinions also influence other customers. Therefore, it’s important to always keep them in the know. This means you have to be transparent with the logistics and processing processes.
Logistics management can be a time-consuming and complex process. But the right tools and techniques can simplify your logistics life.