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Transport & Distribution

Check List

Distribution and Transport

What is needed to achieve a Cost-effective Means of Transport or Distribution:

Key factors to consider in selecting the means of transport or distribution:

physical characteristics of load
the number of loads to be moved,
the distance to be moved
the required speed of movement.
do you require proof of delivery

Other factors which influence the means of transport:

cost of building/dismantling loads
packaging costs
space requirements
interface with other storage, transport and handling systems
housekeeping issues.

What is Physical Distribution Management?

Physical distribution is the activity that is concerned with:
receiving parts or finished goods storing them until they are required and then delivering them to the customer.

Key Concepts:

Transport operator:  The person or company who provides the actual delivery of your orders.

Interposal: interchange point from one transportation mode provider to another.

Consolidation: the process of receiving multiple lots in small quantities, which are accumulated and then repackaged into one larger lot.

Cross docking:  unloading the cargo from several trucks and then immediately reload it into one container for delivery to a final destination.

Distribution warehouse: a facility designed to assemble and then redistribute goods in a way that facilitates rapid movement to customers.

Unitisation: a technique for grouping boxes on a pallet or skid for later movement by pallet jack, forklift, conveyor and / or truck.

Containerisation: the process of combining several unitised loads into a single well-protected load.

What are the functions of Physical Distribution

inventory management
order processing


the set of activities involved in receiving and storing goods and preparing them for reshipment
materials handling

Distribution Decisions:

Important distribution decisions:
Which transport mode?
Number and location of distribution warehouses?
Own or contract-out warehousing and transport?

Transport Modes:

Basis of transport mode selection:
nature, volume, value and criticality of goods
flexibility of transport mode: coping with demand change.

Methods of transport:

flexible, on-time, low loss and damage, tracing, accuracy and wide geographical coverage. Weather and traffic conditions can delay shipments still heavy price competition.


inexpensive for carload lots.  Requires more packing material or must allow for rough handling, somewhat slow however freight forwarders, piggyback truck, and double stack containers offer cost savings for users.

Sea transportation:

ideal for heavy, low-value non-perishables but have high fixed costs weather can be a problem.  Containerisation and improved ports allow for expansion in new products and markets.


high costs, so only suitable for high value or urgent or perishable items:
weight and locations limited
saves inventory holding costs
important in international trade.


low costs, only suitable for nonperishable, non-fragile items
weight limited
important in international documents trade.

Why would you consider Outsourcing some or all of your distribution:

Decisions for owning or contracting-out transport consider:

total cost reduction
this area is not your core focus
to improve customer service
to use the provider of the services management skills
reduce your own staff levels
return on investment.

Distribution Warehouses

Number and location of distribution warehouses are based on:
customer service needs
available transportation services
cost trade off.

Key Performance indicators:

Performance can be assessed based on:

Distribution system flexibility:

response time to special requests

Distribution system information:

speed, accuracy and message detail of response

Distribution system malfunction recovery:

efficiency to recover from malfunction (errors in billing, damage, claims).

Cost to service your customers.

transport check list


Logistics - Anything but simple

Logistics are all about getting the correct products to your customers - consistently, on time.

Simple. Or is it?

In order for your supply chain to work seamlessly, your logistics require flexible and agile coordination of a complex set of processes, operations and systems.

It takes a best practice consulting solutions provider with experience, knowledge, proven methodology and the ever-more important, technological capabilities to provide accurate, fast Logistics Consultants.

At Supply Today we practice what we preach.

That's what our clients want - and that's what we provide.

Call 1300 - 486 - 329 today.