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Reverse logistics is an evolving industry on its own, and a necessary adaptation to evolving market needs. In this article, we will look at the differences between reverse logistics and forward logistics.
Today, the word “logistics” can refer to many processes, departments, and objectives, involving different departments within the company. This holds true whether it is the company itself that performs this work or outsources the logistics and distribution service altogether.
In many cases, outsourcing logistics results in cost and effort savings.
Traditional logistics (or forward logistics)
Traditional logistics relates mainly to the physical movement of materials, the management, and distribution of supplies and goods, focusing mainly on procurement, production, sales, and distribution, sometimes covering the maintenance and inventory management.
Traditional logistics focuses on delivery to customers.
In the past, these activities were often carried out by the company or the organization itself. However, the outsourcing of logistics services has gained traction and diversified the logistics business model.
In some ways, the traditional logistics model has become all but obsolete. In addition to the trend of outsourcing logistics services, other trends need to be taken into account in the logistics environment, such as packing in third party sides, labelling, redressing and product customization but vendors. Digitization is another important factor that is influencing the world of logistics and its evolution.
All this is being complemented by applying new digital technologies and tools that have been created with an intent to improve optimization and modernization of logistics processes.
A direct consequence of all these innovations in logistics is that, from the traditional logistics mentioned here, it is evolving into new logistics models, such as 3PL logistics, 4PL logistics, or reverse logistics.
We can easily understand reverse logistics, by looking at the issue of returns.
To put it simply, reverse logistics deals with customer returns, material and goods return processes to their starting point.
These returns may include excess inventory, obsolete products, and damaged products. Reverse logistics are also often used to transport materials to recycling or processing points to be treated appropriately.
With the rise of e-commerce, reverse logistics has gained a lot of momentum in development in speed, efficiency, and efficiency.
Ultimately we want to achieve a high level of customer satisfaction, which brings a considerable increase in the reputation of the brand in the market.
One of the main differences between reverse logistics and traditional logistics is in its planning and control, since now the product’s tracking does not end once it has been delivered to the customer.
One of the biggest challenges facing reverse logistics is reducing costs and delivery and collection times of orders. The demand that the costs of returns must be borne by the company and not by the customer is increasingly widespread. Many e-commerce companies offer free returns if customers are not satisfied with the product received.
A lesser known but equally important field where reverse logistics happens and is becoming increasingly important is waste collection and recycling.
This includes the recovery, recycling, and proper treatment of these wastes. Reverse logistics can help reduce the consumption needs of society and the disposable materials that are generated in the process of consumption. Where appropriate, it can find the most suitable methods for the management and treatment of materials so that they contaminate the environment as little as possible.
Reverse logistics vs. forward logistics conclusion
Reverse logistics is a logical evolution of traditional logistics. This is an adaptation to the needs of the market made by traditional logistics companies. In its new formulas and models, logistics will remain an important part of the business world and the day-to-day lives of businesses and people. Therefore, it is important to adapt to new trends in the field in order to offer better services to customers, who are becoming more demanding with each passing day.
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