What is International Supply Chain Management and Logistics?
International supply chain management and logistics makes reference to the management or control of both physical and information flow concerning a wide variety of goods, tracking them from the point of their origin and until they reach the destination. This management is done with the help of a number of tools, which provide support when it comes to planning and implementing the set plans for the efficient flow of the supply chain.
International Supply Chain Management Definition
The definition of the International Supply Chain Management is similar with the one of supply chain management, which is the management of the flow involving goods or services, represented by transportation and storage, by inventory and shipping schedules, beginning with the acquisition of raw materials to providing the final product to the end consumer. In the case of International Supply Chain Management, this flow assumes the involvement of at least one company from abroad, with the purpose of creating a network composed out of trans-national companies.
International Logistics Management Definition
International Logistics Management is a complex process that involves planning, implementing plans and strategies, and controlling goods flow and storage, from the point of their origin to the point where they will be consumed, which is in a foreign country, according to The Council of Logistics Management.
Growing Demand of International Supply Chain Management?
The globalization phenomenon erased a lot of borders when it comes to moving goods, materials, and services around the world. Today, anyone can purchase goods that come from countries they never saw before, which may be at the other end of the globe, without a problem. Also, companies can outsource a wide variety of tasks to companies across the seas and get their primary materials for the manufacturing of their products from suppliers that are not from their home country. Having all these aspects in mind, it is easy to understand that the demand for international supply chain management increased in a considerable manner in the past years. This particular trend is not about to stop, as end customers are learning that geographical borders are inexistent when it comes to getting the products they need.
Its Significance for International Business
International Business has a lot of gain from International Supply Chain Management because it stimulates the growth of various economies, it helps in the improvement of standards of living, it helps with the creation of new jobs, it answers to the needs of people, and improves customer services. All of these aspects grow and improve together with the development of local markets, which are boosted by International Supply Chain Management.
Operational Issues with International Supply Chain
The International Supply Chain is not a perfect entity and issues can always emerge. The most frequently meet operational issues can appear in sectors like inventory, transportation, sourcing, marketing, green logistics (which aims to protect the environment and reduce consumption connected to logistics), and the in the operations connected to consumers’ behavior. International supply chain management is discussed in more details in logistics management courses, supply chain management certification online, diploma of supply chain management and online mba supply chain management programs, which are offered by AIMS.
5 Key Characteristics of International Logistics and Supply Chain Management
- The optimization of inventory, making sure that ideal amounts are available at all times;
- Flexibility, as the supply chain is capable of adapting to changes in the market and other factors that may influence it;
- Fast fulfillment of customer needs, which became more and more important as people around the world prefer using their mobile devices as a faster way to find and get what they need;
- Customization, which means that the supply chain will be adjusted so that it will be capable of meeting the demands of the clients;
- Sustainability, a trend that is becoming increasingly prominent in the International Supply Chain Management, having in mind that fossil fuels are a finite good and they have to be used in a smart manner while considering the use of renewable fuels.