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A retailer may have an attractive store, well trained staff and even a distinctive brand reputation in the market. However, these factors don’t count for anything if products are not on the shelf when the customer is shopping. For that reason, ensuring products are available for the customer at all times is a very important process for retailers. The distribution process increases the need to improve quality service, ensures a shorter order cycle time and takes into consideration any environmental factors. The main function of the supply chain is to provide products and services required by end consumers.
The supply chain extends from raw materials in some way through May process to reach to the final consumer; each link in the chain processes the material in some way or supports this by processing. It can also include the disposals of any associated waste. An efficient and responsive supply chain will be will be able to improve stock availability, improve choices, offer up to date products and reduce stock levels and mark down. But in the overall terms, costs will depreciate whilst sales and profits increase.
UK and other countries within Europe have well developed road and rail infrastructures offering highly efficient and costs effective methods of transport, so road and rail are two of the most popular modes of transport used to move goods these transport could be by van or Lorries. One of the road working infrastructure as an example could be the By rail. The freight rail network is highly developed in the UK. It is very important that companies should think about the entire journey that the products and service take to ensure it efficient enough for the goods to arrive in time correctly.
Transportation of goods, once in mainland Europe, could take some time and involve transhipment to a variety of different rail operators. It is better to ship large quantities of goods in one single shipment in order to be cost effective. Another different type of distributing and moving goods in the UK and mainland Europe is By road. It is the most popular method of transporting goods. By road is a good transport method because there are easier links and quicker access to find your current location on where the goods are supposed to be delivered and where you are trying to go.
Thought must be given into the type of goods being transported. e. g. road transportation may not be quite suitable for consumable goods. By observation and assessment of the road UK and mainland Europe should determine whether the infrastructure is of high enough standard to verify that the products arrive on time and in excellent condition on time without any delays. By air transport is a quick option and allows retailers to hold smaller stock levels. The costs however for the majority of products are likely to be a sky high price and this means transport might be the best for emergency stock or in covering deadlines.
There are various problems which may occur during the deliverance of goods to the location you are trying to reach for example delays at airports. Another way of transportation could be by water, By Water means goods being packaged in a ship and then sent to the UK and mainland Europe within 2 to 5 working days. When consumers purchase products online the goods are sometimes delivered by direct marketing e. g. transports by van, Lorries and etc. This way of transport is good if people wait for the product. A different way of transporting goods within UK and mainland Europe is by container.
There is a good level of security which results in low insurance costs. Containers however are usually much expensive when producing and returning empty containers increases and raises the expenses. Special equipment is needed in order to handle the containers and this is a limitation to the number of transfer points. There are benefits for sourcing in The UK. These benefits include shorter lead times, shorter transit times, ability to monitor the total production processes more easily and lastly lower costs in terms of management time and communications.
A retail store may think about accepting higher prices in exchange for the lower risk and costs associated with sourcing from the UK or a geographically close country. Costs will be greater when sourcing form distant or less developed country. However, some companies adopt a policy of sourcing form several different countries. These types of shops have a large and also successful private limited company. It is crucial that retailers have suppliers to deliver their products and services for the business. Retailers depending on the products they sell may need one, two or even several suppliers.
Suppliers are often divided into four main categories these are retailers a majority of them purchase through company salespeople or independent representatives and also handle products from a variety of different companies who are manufacturers. Prices for these sources can be quite low although this will depend on a retailer’s location as an added cost of shipping freight might be incurred. Another category is Independent craftspeople they are likely to offer exclusive distribution of unique products and are usually offered by independent crafts people, sales representatives or through trade shows.
A third category of suppliers are called the import sources, domestic importers operate in a similar way to a domestic wholesaler. A few retailers if familiar with the country will travel abroad to purchase products. Distributors, also known as wholesalers, brokers or jobbers, normally represent an international producer in one of their important overseas markets. The distributor purchases in quantity from a variety of different manufacturers and warehouses the products for sale to retailers.
Commonly distributors will be distributed in the market which they have distribution rights, have the financial strength to carry sufficient stock levels, be ready to purchase in large amounts to minimise the expense of international transport, either be entirely or partly involved in promotion and any after sales service requirements of the product, be responsible for the business transactions in their market for the exporter’s products, accept the risks that are associated with trading in a particular market.
The logistics process refers to the management of resources within the supply chain to ensure the right product is available, in the right quantity at the right time. There is a possibility of many costs involved in the transportation of goods and selecting the most reliable and accessible is important. Consideration must also be given to transit times, capability, security and to one of the most important elements cost. The supply chain is increasingly influenced by the use of ICT. Many of the developments are designed to raise the responsiveness of the supply chain to customer needs.
Companies need to use ICT and information sharing techniques in order to focus on the reduction of responsive time, streamline logistic functions across the supply chain in order to reduce costs and improve efficiency, develop supply chain relationships, enhance customer services for a competitive advantage and also attain international standards and access to global markets. Distribution of eRail Products and Services – Fulfillment is the process of receiving, packaging and shipping orders for products.
Any of eRetailer selling goods directly to customers through the e – commerce must deal with fulfillment. For eRetailer it is crucial to fulfill orders as efficiently and cost effectively as possible. There are two key methods used by eRetailer store picking and dedicating warehouse. Generally store picking involves using low levels of technology to assemble orders by picking up the good of the supermarket shelves. Retailers like supermarkets are for example Tesco’s, Sainsbury’s, Asdas, Somerfield these methods are used by Tesco’s direct and Sainsbury’s order online.
The advantages and disadvantages of using the methods are there is a shorter delivery distances because stores cover a small, local catchment area, easy access to the target location by using transport modes (road) can reach your destination on time. And the disadvantages of using method includes for example this happen very often out of stock products, high picking costs meaning expensive products which some consumers are unable to pay or cannot afford that particular item and store customer disruption. These would be the advantages and disadvantages that may conclude of using this method.