Logistics means many things – it might refer to how you get your products and services to your customer, or how you communicate with remote employees, or how you get your products developed in a timely manner to meet customer expectations. The challenge as we grow our businesses is how to manage logistics. In the beginning, we tend to do it all ourselves or with just a few resources to assist. However, that can’t continue. If you are going to expand your business, you need help to do so and that includes company logistics.
A recent article in Business on Main provided a number of options on how to streamline company logistics. It approached the topic from a variety of directions, all good ideas for any small business looking to grow and expand.
Of key importance in managing your logistics is updating processes and best practices of the business. Too often we put processes and best practices in place and don’t evaluate or update them regularly. As the business grows, the way we need to get the work done must change to support that growth. This includes looking at how to operate more efficiently and effectively. Best practices – a way of working through processes, procedures and standards to achieve the goals and objectives of the business – do not remain a best practice forever. It is simply the most effective way, at that particular time, of getting the work done. The most effective organizations – regardless of their size and complexity – evaluate their best practices on a regular basis to ensure that those practices continue to meet the needs of the business so the business can meet the needs of their customers.
As a best practice, on a regular basis, evaluate the current logistics of your business and determine:
- Effectiveness in meeting the business needs
- Efficiencies in how the work is getting done
- Efficiencies in the utilization of resources
- Effectiveness of the processes currently being utilized
- Use of technology within the business
Baseline where you are now so that you have a good starting point for measuring improvements moving forward.
Make this initiative a part of your annual strategic planning session. Get key employees involved in the effort as they are the ones who are doing the work of the business and you want their input on how to improve the logistics of the business.
Check out the article on Business on Main for some good suggestions for your business.
And consider purchasing my book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Best Practices for Small Business, chock full of ideas on how to ensure your business is a success!