To define Business Logistics in one simple sentence, we would say that it should be ‘getting all things right’. It is all about having the right item in the right quantity at the right time at the right place for the right price in the right condition to the right customer (basically, again, getting all things right)! Yet, Business Logistics has never been perfect. Although, it has Military Logistics to look upon.
Yes, that’s right! Military Logistics has set a standard we should all be aiming for. In “Five Lessons from Military Logistics”, Joe Lynch says that military logistics stands out because they focus on the five areas below which we should consider:
Core Values/Culture: It is said that a man is what his values are. In military, every soldier is inculcated with core values like loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honour, integrity, courage and teamwork. These guide them through every action and every decision.
Mission: In military logistics world, the ownership of mission’s success or failure is borne by all, unlike in the business logistics world. A soldier knows he is a soldier first and will have a straight understanding of his mission to complete his task, whatever it takes.
Process: A good process can save you time, money and effort, and can improve service quality for your customers. The military has been known for being orderly when it comes to following a certain guideline. They develop a set a standard process which makes them responsive, adaptable, timely and precise.
Documentation: This is the key to ‘getting things right’. A shipment will be delivered correctly only if its documentation is done precisely. By this, we mean that the shipment is be labelled with regards to the destination and its nature (hard, fragile, perishable) and is packed as per the instructions.
Communication Technology: The military is known for adapting to newer technologies, especially communication technology. In order to keep things moving, technology of all sorts like GPS tracking systems, mobile apps, RFID labels, integrated ERP systems, barcoding etc. have enabled them to become much more effective and efficient.
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