When looking into the origins of logistics, you first need to define the word. Logistics comes from the French word logistique, or lodger. Lodger, in the context of logistics is storage. So, logistics is the storage of goods, but in the modern world, also includes the transport, handling and passing over of goods as well as the storage.
These various stages are handled by warehouses, courier services, shipping, customs clearance, airfreight, office staff and many other entities within the supply chain.
The first instances of this modern system can be found in the 19th century, with the British Army. Their forces created roads, railroads, ports and storage facilities by which they could move munitions, supplies and personnel from one place to another. These original logistical advancements formed the basis of what we today call a supply chain.
Out in the USA, the agricultural industry adopted similar techniques for moving goods and produce around the country. As this all grew, it led to the beginning of Logistical Management Science in 1964, which helped adapt the systems to benefit almost everything we know, love and cherish in the modern world.
What Logistics Does for Industry
As well as playing its part in the efficient movement of materials and products between source and manufacturer, manufacturer and retailer and retailer and consumer, logistics can reduce costs.
When the logistical processes are refined, the cost to each branch of the chain is reduced. Logistics also help with the effectiveness of customer service and provide a solid foundation for growth within business.
Gaining a route out into the world for your goods increases your potential to grow. It is the logistics industry that connects the physical business world. By capitalising on the connectivity of the digital world, the logistics industry itself can grow, become more efficient and help everything run a little smoother. In turn, leading to more growth.
As we see, logistic has come a long way from the day of the British Army. The significant impact the industry has in boosting economies, world trade and customer relations are down to the work, innovation and creative input of generations.
The future of logistics is one of technological embracement, with electric vehicles, autonomous delivery and high-speed data transfers.
To read up on how technology is shaping our future, you can follow this link.
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