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Reverse Logistics Management: A Customer Retention Strategy

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Technological innovation, globalisations and expansion of newer market zones have given the customers a bigger and better choice. All business expansion process revolves around the demand and supply chain to meet customer satisfaction. Today’s marketplaces thus have set up many challenges for the retailers and vendors as the customer’s choice changes with the technological innovations. What is in craze today may be considered obsolete tomorrow. Hence, the excellence in the core logistics and supply chain activities can lead to overall business success.

The excellence of an organization’s supply chain management solutions depends on its entire value network and the order fulfilment process. Considered as the most important determinant in the supply chain management, order fulfilment refers the activities from taking the orders till it reaches the customers. Keeping the customer demands in view, the manufacturers tend to make use of the technological innovations to design and develop products with better features. However, in the bargain, when the supply exceeds the demand market, the excess of products is stored up in warehouses and are later dumped leading to environmental hazards.

While the cloud process, based order fulfilment becomes the strength of the organizations supply chain management solution, they also need to consider a fully integrated reverse logistics management tool which would provide an end-to-end visibility throughout the complete cycle. This tool would help to incorporate the repair processes, repair and return, calibration and return solutions into the supply chain network, thus avoiding the excess production levels and creation of e-wastes.

Reverse logistics is more than just returns management, it is defined as “the activities related to returns avoidance, gate keeping, disposal and all other after-market supply chain issues”. The reverse supply chain process provides a connectivity platform to all parties in the logistics network, for exchanging information for return orders, takes care of authorizations and acknowledgements, provides stock updates, as well as inventory specifications and sales orders and also handles transport and repair orders directly to and from warehouses and repair centers.

The reverse logistics management maximises infrastructure investment through integration with a customer or existing systems and enables total network visibility for tracking and tracing consignments. Besides, it produces order fulfilment documentation, and transport labels and also ensures order and return placement at end-customer locations. The retailers make use of the returns process to address customer retention issues. By reducing the time between return and time of resell, and maintaining good returns management practices, reverse logistics plays a vital role in the supply chain lifecycle.


 
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  Published Date - January 5 2012
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  Mr. Martin Well
 
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