Studying the Impact of Inbound and Outbound Logistics Practices on the Supplier Customer Relationship.  A Study on DHL Company


Executive Summary

The logistics management in an organisation plays a critical role in the economy of the developed and developing countries by improving the scope of companies operations and boosting their revenues. In this context, the present study has focused on investigating the Impact of Inbound and Outbound Logistics Practices on the Supplier Customer Relationship with DHL as the case study company. The study is based on the findings that through their strategic approach in harnessing a good customer relationship, a continuous improvement and cost reduction are achieved with lean logistics processes introduced and logistics networks optimization in DHL Company. Nevertheless, previous research is yet to examine the impact of both the inbound and outbound logistics in harnessing the customer relationship and effectiveness of their roles. The data used in achieving the aim of the research was collected through the use of the questionnaire survey method and supplemented using the secondary data sources including the industry reports and journals. The areas of influence include provision of a real-time visibility on potential, improved visibility, reduced inconsistencies, reduced cost barriers and leveraging on core benefits and to access new benefits. The analysis indicates that despite of the different challenges encountered, these issues directly impact on the customer relationship of DHL company operations by increasing their availability in the market. As opposed to other entities in the logistics sector, DHL has already set realistic strategies in improving their customer relationship aspects. Various strategies to enhance further customer relationship of the DHL and other companies including the moving from warehousing to cross-docking and a review of the carrier performance, feedback, supplier constraints and unplanned issue, liability insurance and cost management measures have been recommended in this report.

Table of Contents

1.0 Introduction. 4

1.1 Issues Explored in Report 4

1.2 Importance of Evaluating the Issues 5

1.3 Achievements in the Report 5

2.0 Background Information. 5

2.1 DHL Background Information. 5

3.0 Situation Analysis 7

3.1 External Analysis 7

3.1.1 Customers 7

3.1.2 Competitors. 8

3.1.3 Environmental Effect 8

3.2 Internal Analysis 9

SWOT Analysis 9

4.0 Evaluation and application of appropriate theories 11

4.1 Steps involved in the Inbound and Outbound Logistics Functions in the DHL Company. 11

4.2 Inbound and Outbound Logistics and their Influence on Customer Relationship Management 13

4.3 Barriers in Inbound and Outbound Logistics Limiting a Successful Customer Relationship Management 15

5.0 Recommendations. 17

References 19

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Issues Explored in Report

The issue of focus in this study is the impact of inbound and outbound logistics practices at DHL on supplier-customer relationships.  This is since the logistics management plays a critical role in the success of entity operations with an impact on their bottom-line operations. To affirm this, PLS (2018) report noted that logistics play a critical role in client satisfaction which is essentially more than low product costs in terms of benefits. This is since the contemporary business environment is comprised of increased competitiveness globally, client preferences on value for money and extensive stakeholders expectations on investment returns. As such, it is essential to evaluate the extent to which logistics practices could be used as a competitive advantage strategy to harnessing the overall supplier-customer relationship.  To affirm this, Baofeng Huo (2014) had noted that different firms use supply chain management as a tool for promoting their competitive advantage strategy. The customer relationship, in this case, is evident in the areas of value creation, timely product delivery, cost management issues, inventory control and customer services. In the inbound and outbound statistics assist this by harnessing individual perspectives and alternatively through adoption of synergies established with other firms to increase their overall customer services and overall revenues. Hence, through an understanding of the supply chain capabilities and involving the inbound and outbound logistics, different firms are in a position of exploiting operational efficiencies and maintaining a holistic competitive advantage. The following objectives would be pursued;

RQ1) to delineate the various steps involved in the inbound and outbound logistics functions in the DHL Company

RQ 2) to analyse the role of the various steps that have been identified, in the inbound and outbound logistics functions, in influencing customer relationship management.

RQ 3) based on the findings of research question 2 above, identify steps that have a negative impact on customer satisfaction and propose measures to eliminate these weaknesses.

RQ 4) to evaluate the barriers that may be faced in implementing the measures proposed in research question 3 and develop recommendations to mitigate these barriers.

RQ 5) Based on the findings recommend best practices that can be adopted by DHL in implementing inbound and outbound logistics practices that can lead to enhanced customer relationships.

1.2 Importance of Evaluating the Issues

The relevance of this topic is informed by the fact that a majority of the third-party logistics companies experience distinct challenges in the management of their warehouses and distribution services of the services offered on behalf of their customers (Joe¨lle Vanhamme, 2012) . As noted by Mark Ko (2010) logistics represent a critical area in the supply chain management which is involved in the timely delivery of foods and services to their final destination. This is done by providing essential goods as the essential quantity and condition in ideal location and prices. Hence, it is essential to evaluate the inbound and outbound logistics to appreciate the level to which the process is influencing the existing relationships with customers.

1.3 Achievements in the Report

At the end of this project, the different steps that are essential in the inbound and outbound logistics functions in the context of DHL Company would be deduced. Also, this report would evaluate the different steps roles involved in the processes for influencing successful client relationship management. Additionally, the different steps that negatively influence negatively on the impact on customer satisfaction and proposed measures for weaknesses elimination would be provided. This is also inclusive of the findings that recommend the best practices suitable for DHL in successful implementation of inbound and outbound logistics practices leading to enhanced relationships. In the case of DHL, as is evident from their strategic plan, the organisation intends to become a global leader in their courier services industry and as such highlighting on distinct critical objectives that must be met for achieving their set vision (DHL, 2006).  The challenges that affect successful operations of the company in their industry of focus include the managerial barriers, governmental barriers, non-tariff barriers, and the socio-cultural issues affecting the organisation success. This represents a critical area that would be achieved after the successful completion of this report.

2.0 Background Information

2.1 DHL Background Information

Please click the icon below to receive this assessment in full