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Managers in the Foreseeable FutureResearch Paper

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Infrastructure Issues Facing Transportation & Logistics Managers in the Foreseeable Future

The public transport is anticipated to flourish because of the capability to include and integrate the users' needs for ease in expending the system. Some of the accrued qualities of a public transportation system consist of security, ease of driving and luxury, access in using the service, expediency in use and decreasing hassle to individual travelers and the road structures (Henke, 2007).

Supply Chain Management enables a structure to gain an understanding of its general business operation and bring into line these operations in a compacted system of practices that mark effectiveness. The necessity for companies to attain productivity in their practice is also brought about by the necessity to have a competitive edge over rival companies. On the other hand, a legible supply chain comes about by mixing the lean and agile methods to the management of a supply chain. This particular method endeavors to integrate the subtleties of business operations and market setting to minimalize expenses and take full advantage of productivity (Christopher et al., 2001).

Factors Influencing a Supply Chain Network

Various factors influence disparity in a supply chain network. Fundamentally all of these factors relate in one way or another to transportation, and the system of transportation that subsists logistics both nationwide and globally. One of the factors include infrastructure in the operation of the supply chain network. This encompasses main highways and waterways or ports, internal and external of a supply chain network (Center, 2009).

Situations that affect such infrastructure consist of overcrowding and contemporary rates for supply and demand. In addition, there are delivery options that play a key role in supply chain networks. One example is just in time (JIT) delivery which encompasses consumers to be able to influence the extent of variation in a supply chain. This is attained by getting the items they desire delivered and paying for them at their own preferential mode. The significance is that the delivery service, then, is capable to enable those demands that overwhelmingly influence disparity within a supply chain (Center, 2009).

Another influencing factor is labor. Several diverse aspects of labor bring about implications for variation in a supply chain network. To begin with, the cost of labor significantly relates to what supplies can be produced and in what quantities they are capable of being produced. Moreover, where the labor is obtained from also impacts variation along with labor conditions. In totality, these factors are in connection with price and supply chain network variation (Center, 2009).

Freight Movement & Logistical Manager Challenges

For a logistics or operations manager, there a few factors that ought to be taken into account in the decision making practice of moving freight into the transportation systems of the United States from different areas such as Asia and Europe. One of the major factors encompasses cost. Logistics manager have to take into consideration the cost that an organization is bound to incur in moving such freight before such undertakings are made. For instance, it is important for the logistics manager to consider whether ocean freight movement is cheaper or costlier in comparison to airfreight movement. In general, the understanding is that ocean freight movement is much cheaper compared to airfreight, yet this is not true at all times (Green, 2011).

Destination charges play a vital role in cost decision making and definitely have to be considered. Irrespective of what medium is utilized for the freight movement, import fees and destination fees will be sustained each time. Despite the fact that the real shipment charge of sea freight is typically inexpensive in comparison to the shipment charge of air freight, the payments for warehouses at seaports are several times costlier compared to those at airports (Green, 2011).

There is another important factor which the operations manager ought to be concerned about, and that is swiftness, in the sense that how fast the organization is able to undertake the freight movement from one destination to another. This has to take into account the period given by the consumers for delivery. Many businesses prefer systems that are faster. In addition, the operations manager has to account for the extra time that might be requirement for freight movement while entering a new area for business operations. In connection with speed, air freight is considered to be the better option (Green, 2011).

Nevertheless, ocean freight is able to handle much more cargo. Reliability is another influencing factor for freight movement and influences the decision making of the logistics manager. It is imperative for the manager to bear in mind, which is the best mode to get things into the United States transportation system. Green (2011) observes that in spite of the fact that airfreight movement has a shorter historical account in comparison to ocean freight movement, the former has a propensity of being deemed more reliable. This is because, with ocean freights, their planning is not very accurate.

Many times, a significant factor that logistics managers have to deliberate on, prior to entering a new system of transportation for business operations is the level of demand. In essence, logistics simply comprises of undertaking the movement or shipping of goods and products from their point of manufacture to their point of delivery or where they are consumed (Fernie and Sparks, 2009).

As a result, this means that the operations manager of an organization has to ascertain that there is a sufficient amount of demand prior to the decision making of entering a certain system of transportation. This is of importance as the organization is wary of incurring losses in any form. The demand levels are important as rates and charges of transportation being dependent on them and correspond to the level of demand from the consumers (Fernie and Sparks, 2009).

Overcoming Challenges as a Retail Logistics Manager

Logistics manager experience and face several challenges and the aspects discussed below are some of the different ways in which these obstacles can be met. For a logistics manager, it is imperative to make certain that the demands of the customers that come about are complied with, by meeting such demands. The logistics manager can achieve this criterion simply by utilizing the distribution channels and routes of the organization (Fernie and Sparks, 2009).

Constant and widespread increase and decrease in online demand for particular merchandises, and overall, newly released items, can cause the movement of freight in home delivery channels to increase or decrease consistently. A pertinent example of this utilization can be perceived in the manner in which Amazon was able to distribute the newly published book volumes of Harry Porter (Fernie and Sparks, 2009).

This made it possible to distribute these products to tens of thousands consumers immediately after publication. For example, in the United States, the distribution company FedEx made a distribution of a 250,000 copies of the fifth Harry Porter book in the volume series for Amazon on the day of publication. This was accomplished by the firm as it made the most of its channels of one hundred and thirty flights flying overnight and use of twenty thousand home delivery freelancers and FedEx express carriers (Fernie and Sparks, 2009).

Other challenges that can be experienced by a retail logistics manager is the loss of merchandises, products and goods being returned by the clients, poor delivery scheduling and also problems with time period accessible for warehousing and delivery. One of the main means in which the manager can overcome these issues is employing new and effective technology in logistics. Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is the technological advancement that incorporates the use of wireless electromagnetic fields in the transmission of data with the aim of regularly becoming aware of and pursuing codes placed on items and objects. RFIDs can be used to track the movement of goods being transported to determine their location in real-time. Furthermore, these RFIDs can be used in warehousing as well as tracking the procedure of the manufacture of the items (Vella, 2012).

The major advantage of using this technology is that different from other components such as the barcode scanner, the RFID does not necessitate for the manager to read the information in a tedious manner. Instead, this process is done by making use of radio waves. In so doing, the reader has the advantage of ease readability in addition to the convenience that reading of the information is faster and does not require any contact from the user. Therefore, the logistics manager can read the information regarding a certain product even when it is at a remote location. This technology has come to be cost-effective as it has impelled the idea of receiving distribution notices in real-time. RFID has rendered enhanced efficiency, low cost and ease of operations in locating movement of merchandises for the logistics operation (Vella, 2012).


Center for Freight & Infrastructure Research & Education. (2009). Keeping the global supply chain moving.www.youtube.com Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVYcxi1rdgE

Christopher, Martin, & Denis R.T. (2001). An Integrated Model for the Design… [END OF PREVIEW]

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