2024’s #1 Guide to Global Logistics and Supply Chain Management

Global logistics and supply chain management continue to face interference, demanding complete focus from leaders on driving measurable performance improvements and adding value to their enterprises. 

To overcome these challenges, 75% of companies have started implementing data and analytics tools.  

global logistics and supply chain management


What is Global Supply Chain Management?

When it comes to the global supply chain management definition, it is a strategic approach to manage the flow of materials, information, and people across international borders to either produce or deliver goods to customers. 

Supply chain and logistics management involves coordinating all activities involved such as: 

  • Sourcing 
  • Procurement 
  • Production 
  • Inventory Management 
  • Warehousing 
  • Transportation
  • Distribution 

Managing the global supply chain involves: 

  • Operations across multiple countries and continents, involving diverse regulations, cultures, and economic environment. 
  • Managing the entire chain, from raw materials to finished products reaching the end or last customer. 
  • Aligning overall business objectives, therefore emphasizing efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and customer satisfaction. 
  • Adapting to the changing market conditions, and technological advancements. 

Process of Global Logistics and Supply Chain Management

The following activities work together in a coordinated and sequential manner using Enterprise Resource Planning or ERP. 

It acts like a powerful software tool, integrating and synchronizing various activities along the chain to reach the end goal: 

  1. Design & Development: Conceptualizing and designing a product based on needs and feasibility. ERP can track product details, specifications, and bill of materials, aiding in cost analysis and production planning.
  2. Procurement: Acquiring materials and components from suppliers, considering quality, cost, and reliability. ERP manages purchase orders, tracks supplier performance, and optimizes inventory levels for procured materials. 
  3. Demand Planning & Forecasting: Predicting customer demand to guide production and inventory decisions. Integrating sales data and forecasts, ERP informs production planning and avoids stockouts. 
  4. Production: Manufacturing goods efficiently and sustainably. ERP manages production schedules, tracks resource utilization, and optimizes workflow for efficient manufacturing.
  5. Inventory Management: Optimizing inventory levels to avoid stockouts and minimize holding costs.Provides real-time inventory visibility, ERP enables demand forecasts and optimal stock levels across warehouses. 
  6. Warehousing: Strategically storing goods near markets or production facilities ERP facilitates stock tracking,order fulfillment, and warehouse management for efficient distribution. 
  7. Transportation: Efficiently moving goods across borders while complying with regulations. ERP integrates with logistics management systems, optimizing shipping routes, managing costs, and ensuring compliance. 
  8. Distribution: Delivering goods to customers on time and in good condition. Tracking deliveries, ERP manages orders and facilitates customer relationship management for smooth distribution. 
  9. Return Management: Handling returned products efficiently. Capable of tracking returns, ERP manages refunds and facilitates product repairs and reintegration into the supply chain. 
  10. Technology Integration: Utilizing tools and software to automate and optimize supply chain activities. Acting as a central hub, ERP integrates various tools and data across the supply chain for seamless information flow. 
  11. Performance Measurement and Analysis: Monitoring key metrics to identify areas for improvement. ERP generates reports and dashboards for key performance indicators, enabling data-driven decision-making and continuous improvement. 

What is a Global Supply Chain Strategy?

A global supply chain strategy is a roadmap for how a company is planning to manage its flow of materials, information, and people across international borders. 

It basically outlines the key decisions and actions needed to best achieve specific business goals within the complex global landscape. 

Characteristics of a Global Supply Chain Strategy

A well defined global supply chain solutions strategy has the following key characteristics: 

  • Business Goals: Linked to the overall business strategy, supporting objectives like growth, cost reduction, or improved customer satisfaction. 
  • Value Creation: Identifies and optimizes activities throughout the supply chain that creates the most value for the company and its customers. 
  • Adaptability & Agility: Recognizes the dynamic natures of global markets and incorporates flexibility, to best respond to changing conditions. 
  • Global Supply Chain Risk Management Strategies: Proactively identify and mitigate potential risks associated with globalization, such as geopolitical instability or supply chain disruptions. 
  • Data-Driven Decision Making: Leveraging data and analytics to optimize decision-making across the supply chain, promoting efficiency and informed choices. 

Operations and Supply Chain Management: The Core

Operations and supply chain management: the core, refers to the fundamental principles and practices that promote successful supply chain management. 

The involved elements include: 

Optimizing inventory levels to avoid stockouts and minimizing holding costs. Then it moves on to production planning and scheduling which accurately interprets demand forecasts and production capacities leading to achievable schedules that meet customer expectations and optimize costs. 

Logistics and transportations involves carefully choosing options like ocean freight, air cargo, or multimodal combinations based on shipment size, urgency, and trade regulations to minimize costs and make sure that it’s smoothly delivered to the required destinations. 

Diversifying supplied bases across regions mitigates potential disasters, while proactive negotiation strategies tend to secure favorable contracts for long-term value. 

Selecting effective distribution channels, whether through retail stores, online platforms, or direct-to-consumer models, guarantees a quick and convenient product delivery to customers. 

Supply Chain Management Strategy Planning and Operations for 2024

In order to plan your supply chain strategy for 2024, consider the following trends and challenges: 

  • Increased Volatility (or Fluctuations): Political, economical, climate-related disruptions are expected to rise, demanding adaptability, and robust risk management strategies. 
  • Technology Advancements: Continuously evaluate and incorporate new technologies such as automation, robotics, and artificial intelligence (AI) to further improve efficiency and decision-making. 
  • Sustainability: Integrate sustainability practice considering both environmental and social responsibility throughout operations. 
  • Data & Analytics: Make use of data-driven approaches to optimize every stage of your supply chain and gain insights that will help make better decisions. 
  • Talent & Skill Development: Attract and retain skilled professionals who are able to manage the global aspects of the global supply chain. 

By making use of digital solutions and strategic planning, you can definitely achieve significant improvements in efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and customer satisfaction. 

With Forceget you can digitize your shipping operations, through our supply chain logistics software, with the goal of streamlining the process, providing instant quotes, transparent pricing, and dependable delivery schedules. Ship smart, ship easy.