Describe how you would design a logistics network consisting of only one warehouse. In the discussion, include the steps you need to take in order to design the optimal network. What information and data is needed to make this determination? What strategy will be employed in this network?
Logistics Network Planning
Designing a logistics network is a complex process requiring a great deal of coordination and focus to accomplish specific tasks. Recent developments in innovation now make it possible for experts in the field to conduct an in-depth analysis of the efficacy of logistic networks before execution (“Introducing logistics systems,” 2014, p. 45). In particular, logistics managers must be at the forefront of the process of remodeling distribution networks with the primary objective being the overall reduction of operational costs while still maintaining high standards of customer service. It is, therefore, fundamental to explore the design process for a logistics network consisting of only one warehouse and steps which should be taken to design an optimal network. Additionally, this paper will also include a discussion of the information and data required to make this determination and strategies which will be employed within this particular network.
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Network and warehouse designing is reliant upon methodical procedures which ultimately assure all parties involved of success. It is vital for logistics managers to begin by determining core objectives of their operation (Management Association; Information Resources, 2019). This enables them to map out various responsibilities that have to be addressed in addition to main priorities. The second step involves reviewing the current market landscape before making an informed assessment of customers to assure them of quality services. Thirdly, it is crucial to determine all costs associated with a particular operation for the purpose of planning. The fourth step entails appraising available alternatives by evaluating different set-ups to ensure that the plan is free on any flaws. The fifth phase will involve the amalgamation of a fitting marginal which would fit within the market while serving consumer needs.
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Putting the aforementioned steps into action when designing a logistics networks will involve creating a team of professionals with specific responsibilities related to the task at hand. Subject matter experts (SMEs) are integral within this scenario since they are well-versed in the art of applying their expertise towards the attainment of specific organizational objectives. Within this network design the main aim will be to provide competent network services at a considerable affordable cost which will ultimately guide the firm in the development of an appropriate mission statement (Myerson, 2015). SMEs must also acknowledge their role within this setup as integral cogs which will ultimately enable the company to provide topnotch services while developing human capital.
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The second and third phases will be employed in quick succession to ensure that participants in the development of network logistics gain a detailed understanding of customer service and accompanying costs. This will entail identifying the target population and their locality to make certain that sufficient data is gathered regarding specific requirements. It will also be essential to determine their location from the warehouse and oppositions within the area. Furthermore, the presence of a logistics planner will ensure that operations remain well within the budget which is essential when seeking to make profits in the future (Rushton, Oxley, & Croucher, 2016). The actual warehouse, conveyance, and costs associated with hiring personnel will all be included as part of the operational cost. The presence of one warehouse will ultimately mean high conveyance costs since outbound transportation is traditionally known for being inefficient.
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Evaluating possible alternatives is also an essential phase when developing an appropriate logistics network design. It is worth noting that the application of computer simulations is integral when seeking to assess the suitability of a particular network model. It is also essential to consider the human factor during this particular process. This will typically entail conducting an elaborate assessment of data keyed in as a way of making certain that no mistakes were made during this critical stage. Although it is typically recommended to rely on computer calculations, it is also important to note that it is possible for anomalies to emerge during this process (Kasilingam, 2015). Precision is crucial for success within any business since all outputs will be accounted for within the entire framework.
The fifth stage will involve proactive decision-making by SMEs with the aim of merging essential plans key to the success of a logistics network. This will then be followed by implementation while adhering to a precise methodology which ensures that team members collaborate to achieve set goals. The evaluation of freight by this particular team and details relating to costs and the exact location of the warehouse will be essential when planning while considering input results during the evaluation phase. It is also during this phase that the potential of the selected location will be determined with the aim of developing potential alternatives in case it fails to meet projected objectives. The consolidation of all plans will then be made during the last stage while making necessary modifications to respond to market requirements.
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In conclusion, logistics network planning is a major determining factor when seeking to establish a successful supply chain. This is because adhering to a five-step framework will eventually ensure that a firm gains access to the market and suppliers at a relatively affordable cost. Thus, a robust logistics network eventually promotes productivity and customer satisfaction.
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