Logistics is a word that you see most often on the side of trucks. But it has a bigger meaning: the management of the flow of materials through an organization, from raw materials to finished goods. It is to deliver the right product to the right place at the right time. The Oxford Dictionary defines logistics as “the science of movement, supply and maintenance of military forces in the field.”

Logistics might sound a simple enough business of moving things around, but it is growing more complex. Customers are demanding more custom tailored services. Innovative technology and greater use of the internet opens up new ways of passing the information around, Now that companies re-engineered and scrubbed the waste from their assembly lines, logistics seems to get closer attention. Now companies are more demanding, and looking for the right products at the right time, logistics plays a key role in their business plan.

Good logistics can make all the difference to a company’s ability to serve its customers. Besides the primary function of delivering the products, logistics serves many other functions to businesses. It is not just what you make or how you make it. These functions include warehousing, customer service, and coordinating with manufacturers. It is how quickly you get the parts together, or shift finished products from mainly Asian factories to western markets. The success of retailers depends largely on getting the right goods to the right place at the right time. Indeed, some companies lost control and were anxious to go in searching of lower costs, it failed to maintain a system that could adapt quickly to what was selling and what was not without logistical help. In an ever changing world, as the process of doing business with end users evolves, importance of logistics becomes more paramount. From importers to freight forwarders to truckers to carriers, everyone has a significant function. Supply chain management continuously evolves with the ever changing supply and demand.