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List of Logistics and Supply Chain Management Companies

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What is Supply Chain Management?

The supply chain is the complete process of sourcing the raw elements required to create goods, its production to delivering said products or services to customers.

The goal of having an efficient supply chain management system is to improve the performance of the supply chain system. An accurate supply chain information enables manufacturers to manufacture and distribute the exact amount of merchandise required by customers. Supply chain systems aid manufacturers and retailers to manage excess inventory, which in turn reduces the cost of manufacturing, shipping, and storing unsold products.

What Are the Different Elements of Supply Chain Management?

There are six components of Supply chain management:

  • Planning
  • Sourcing
  • Production
  • Delivering
  • Returning Goods
  • Inventory

1. Planning 

Before manufacturing, businesses need to formulate a plan and supervise all necessary resources to satisfy customers' demand for products or services. In the planning stage, logistics and supply chain management companies design an effective supply chain system and decide upon metrics in order to meet the enterprise's and customer's objectives.

2. Sourcing

Sourcing deals with the acquisition of raw materials and services required to manufacture the product. After subcontracting supply chain management companies, the supply chain managers focus on processes, such as ordering, managing inventory, authorizing payments, etc.

3. Production

Supply chain companies regulate the requirement of raw materials, manufacturing, quality assurance, packaging, and schedule delivery. Before the production begins, enterprises also calculate expected production output, worker productivity, and quality of the commodities.

4. Logistics:

It deals with scheduling delivery, coordinating customer orders, dispatching goods, invoicing, and payments. Businesses may outsource their logistics department or create their own delivery systems depending on their requirements and finances.

5. Returning Goods

The business needs to design a responsive and flexible shipping network to manage products returned by patrons. The commodities, at times, are returned, either due to it being defective, wrongly ordered, or currently not required by the clients. If the merchandise is faulty, it is reworked or scrapped. Whereas, if it is not required or incorrectly ordered by clients, the enterprise can store it in the warehouse for sale.

6. Inventory

A well-maintained inventory is crucial in supply chain management. It monitors the flow of goods from the manufacturing unit to warehouses to the point of sales/return. Based on the demand for the product, companies need to continually update the raw materials, ready goods as well as returned items.

What Is the Importance of Supply Chain Management?

There are several benefits to supply chain management:

1. Better Efficiency:

By integrating an efficient supply chain management system will assist businesses in predicting the demand for specific products. It is essential in fulfilling the requirements of the customers. Supply chain & logistics companies help clients adjust to the dynamic and fluctuating market, hence improving the efficiency rate.

2. Cost-Effective:

Supply chain management offers better cost management by maintaining the inventory system, stocking the finished goods as well as managing distributors and vendors. It is also vital in improving the system’s responsiveness to the customer’s requirements. This will subsequently reduce overall business expenditure.

3. Build Cooperation:

Supply chain management links up all the communicating points, such as production units, distribution units, vendors, etc. improving collaboration amongst them. It also gives organizations access to track the activities between the suppliers and distributors. This accelerates other tasks such as forecasts, reporting, order statuses, quotations, and other transportations plans in real-time.

4. Risk Mitigation:

Businesses need to assess risks and liabilities before investing in a plan. Logistics and supply chain management companies can predict favorable and unfavorable outcomes in order to avoid system failure. It also plays a crucial role in ensuring workplace safety, quality of the product, and maintaining relationships with different departments.

5. Enhanced Data Visibility:

Supply chain management helps display crucial data enabling decision-makers to make informed decisions. Several supply chain & logistics companies offer simplified reporting solutions to ensure that the managers can view and assess valuable data quickly and employ strategies to change the inputs that best match the business goals.

What Are the Benefits of Outsourcing Supply Chain Management?

Several companies opt to outsource various stages of supply chain logistics to third-party service providers to maximize the profitability of the business. Let’s explore some of the significant benefits of outsourcing supply chain solutions.

1. Focus on Core Business: 

Supply chain & logistics companies can consume precious hours, which can otherwise be used for marketing, building customer relationships, and formulating new ideas. Since supply chain companies will oversee the supply and distribution, business owners can allocate more time to further strengthening the business. Hiring one of the top supply chain companies will allow your employees to focus on core tasks and be more productive, thereby helping the business in gaining long-term success.

2. Reduced operational cost: 

Supply chain management demands extensive infrastructure, overhead, sampling, staffing, and other such costs. Therefore, it is more cost-effective to subcontract supply chain solutions to a reliable third-party instead of setting up an in-house system. The best supply chain companies use their in-depth knowledge and field expertise to reduce the overall expenses. They offer services such as procuring less expensive materials, inventory management, transportation optimization, etc. to control expenditure.

3. Scalability: 

The best supply chain and logistics companies have access to high-end tools and technologies for managing the entire system in a better manner. This helps their clients to adapt to changing market trends and consumer preferences quickly. Moreover, by outsourcing, businesses can expand or downsize rapidly without worrying about other aspects, such as infrastructure or staffing constraints. 

4. Better Resources: 

Outsourcing supply chain logistics offers businesses access to highly skilled staff and advanced technology. Moreover, companies can judge the credibility of the service providers and hire multiple supply chain companies to get the best from each partner or select a single associate that matches their various criteria, such as location, budget, field expertise, etc. 

5. Meet Customer Demand: 

The outsourced logistics company is responsible for supplying the products required by customers. They will ensure that the raw material planning meets production schedules. The supply chain analysts are also capable of predicting any rise or fall in demand in order to run the production and distribution departments efficiently.

Which Are the Most Prominent Supply Chain Management Trends?

There are several technologies and trends is expected to affect supply chain management positively:

1. Robotic Automation:

Integrating robotic automation enables organizations to deploy smart bots to automate operational business processes. These tools are intelligent agents capable of performing repetitive tasks, eliminating human error, thereby reducing overhead. Robotic process automation allows easy integration of multiple software, systems, etc. used throughout the supply chain. RPA also results in faster turnaround helping build a successful business.

2. Cloud Platforms:

Integrating a cloud platform into supply chain management can centralize information while reducing cost and ensuring data security. Data serves as a crucial asset while dealing with supply chain and logistics services, and cloud solutions can ensure that the information is easily accessible by authorized personnel. Cloud platforms can accommodate inventory or warehouse management, manage transportations, orders, and demand forecasting, as well as supplier relationships. Cloud computing improves the entire supply chain by streamlining manual business operations to automated platforms.

3. Artificial Intelligence:

Integrating AI and machine learning can help businesses in enhancing supply chain analytics, demand forecasting, and predictive maintenance. Artificial Intelligence can improve different operations, such as Virtual Assistant, Data analysis, and software solutions, reducing human errors. Moreover, AI in logistics will lead to faster and more accurate shipping solutions. This reduces lead times as well as transportation and labor expenses.

4. Blockchain:

Blockchain technology ensures a permanent and tamper-proof account of the information that a cluster of computers manages. Since a single entity does not own it, every party can be sure of the integrity of the system. Blockchain guarantees the security of the data shared amongst the vendors, production teams, purchasing departments, sales, distribution as well as customers. The technology offers many advantages, including smart contracts to enhance transparency, authentication, and limit fraud.

5. Cybersecurity:

Companies must distinguish and manage the risk in their supply chain solutions in order to protect their interests as well as the interests of their clients and end-users. This can be guaranteed by implementing a fully tailored cybersecurity system. It further identifies the software security vulnerabilities in supply chain management systems and rectifies them to avoid substantial harm to the business.

Which Are Essential Supply Chain Services?

The following are the top 5 different types of supply chain management tools essential for optimizing the entire supply chain:

1. Shipping Services:

Shipping services offer real-time alerts to provide timely information on all freighting activities. Shipping companies enable purchasing and printing shipping labels right off the computer. The best shipping solutions can easily integrate with popular carriers to provide up-to-date shipping estimates. Moreover, businesses can receive a wide range of shipping alternatives, all at different velocities, from different shippers, offering various advantages.

2. Warehouse Management Services:

Warehouse management companies can aid businesses in determining how and where to store specific materials, products, and equipment to optimize the flow of the warehouse. These agencies have advanced warehousing tools offer several different features; some of the examples are:

  • Floor Simulators - It allows users to create floor plans within the system.
  • RFID Tagging - This offers real-time data on the inventory.
  • Automatic Reordering - It ensures that the inventory is always up-to-date.

3. Fulfillment Services:

Fulfillment service automatizes the processes of data collection, decision-making, and monitoring changes in compliance requirements and integrating it properly into the whole system. Fulfillment companies also deal with compliance solutions to ensure that company-owners can make decisions dealing with the company’s legal and financial integrity. The major operations performed by compliance tools are:

  • Internal audit
  • Quality management
  • Risk registers
  • Finance and operations
  • Regulatory compliance and reputation

4. Logistics Services:

Third-party logistics companies assist in creating route plans for shipments ensuring that correct carriers are selected. They further expedite shipments via better shipment planning and automate functions concerning paperwork and load planning. Logistics firms additionally suggest the best routes and monitor the status of drivers and vehicles while ensuring that the goods reach customers on time.

5. Freight Services:

Freight forwarder companies automate operations like data entry, billing, quoting, and other functions to increase efficiency, productivity, ultimately driving profit. Automation enables businesses to rapidly scale tasks to match the growth of the business accurately. A well-established freight agency offers tools capable of delivering flexible data analysis and visualization, allowing managers to make decisions best suited for the business. There are companies dealing with specific freight routes such as:

How to Shortlist Best Supply Chain Companies?

To help hire the right supply chain companies for your project, we have delineated the steps businesses must follow for the selection process:

1. Access Business Needs:

Before investing in a supply chain logistics company, it is imperative to comprehend the organization's needs. An efficient supply chain management system delivers numerous complex modules, enabling businesses to manage different business areas. These solutions may range from managing finances, production, inventory, shipping, purchasing, sales, etc. To receive the most benefits of the supply chain company, it is essential to list all the features required by the organization. Communicate with your employees to understand their daily tasks and the best functions that should be incorporated to accomplish explicit short-term and long-term goals concerning productivity, revenue, and customer service. Based on the data collection companies can easily select compliant supply chain partners.

2. Portfolio:

It is vital to understand the caliber of the selected logistics company to get the best services. Research about their past projects, how have they contributed to their prior clients, their expertise in tackling complex business problems, etc. This will allow you to assess the ability of the supply chain companies accurately. You may ask the service provider to give recommendations from previous customers as proof of their services. Business owners can also check out third-party reviews and rating platforms, such as GoodFirms, to better recognize the capabilities and vulnerabilities of the prospect vendor

3. Budget:

Before hiring a supply chain and logistics agency, the client must primarily assess their funds. You must evaluate your finances and prepare a budget outlining proper investments. Discuss and decide upon the amount you are compliant to pay and thus locate a firm that correlates with your prices. It is advisable to expect modifications in the budget as the top supply chain companies are better equipped in estimating the expenses required to accomplish the desired business goals. Ascertain that you receive quotations from multiple vendors before settling on the ideal partner.

4. Security:

While outsourcing to the best supply chain companies, inquire them about the security policies that they have established. Subsequently, examine the protocols regarding digital integrity and data authenticity. There are also other threats encountered by supply chain clients, such as inventory theft, smuggling, piracy, etc. A dedicated supply chain analyst constantly oversees the system in order to spot any such complex issues. Ask them their plan of actions to counter the potential risks concerning hacking or data tampering. It is advisable to ensure that the service provider regularly manages the cloud network and monitors access privileges.

5. Easy Integration:

Easy integration of the supply chain management system is an essential factor while incorporating a new solution. It is crucial to have instant access to any metric generated linking the business and the provider. The service provider must offer transparency by accurately reporting on business operations. Moreover, the solution must be easily adapted to existing business environments. Opt for a service provider who is capable of quickly implementing the supply chain management system.

GoodFirms Research Process:

GoodFirms evaluated the best supply chain companies based on three fundamental evaluation criteria, namely, Quality, Reliability, and Ability. This list allows service seekers to contemplate and determine the ideal partner for their business. The expert researchers at GoodFirms have scrutinized the characteristics offered by the supply chain logistics management and curated the logistics companies mentioned-above. The list is composed only after the thorough review of each participating agency on their portfolio, market discernment, domain expertise, as well as the flexibility of the solutions presented. These service providers are further assessed on the basis of the reviews offered by their prior clients.

GoodFirms always welcome new and established supply chain companies to expand our list. Hence, we would like to invite supply chain providers to participate and get listed in our Research segment by providing proof of their work.