Transportation in an organization’s supply chainsThe McGuire Air Force Base Logistics Readiness Squadron is a constituent of the Mission Support Group of the aforementioned air base. Its purpose includes the management of distribution, material and the wing’s deployment machine. It further provides overall direction and management of the air base logistics processes related to vehicles, supplies, cargo movement, deployment planning and operations, equipment, fuels, and cryogenics needed to operate and maintain the Air Mobility Wing’s primary aircraft. In relation to the purpose and functioning of the Squadron, this essay will chart the role and usage of transportation in the supply chain of an organization that produces tangible products. In addition, it will analyze how the organization can maximize the efficiency of transportation aspect at supply chain and suggest ways that might improve the transportation to optimize its supply chain management.A supply chain or logistics network is a coordinated system involved in delivering a product or service in either physical or virtual mode from supplier to the customer. Transport or transportation refers to the movement of goods and/or people from one place to another.

The modes of transport include road transport, railroad system, ship transport and modern aviation.Transportation plays a major role in an organization’s supply chain. Through transportation, goods are delivered to the designated locations cost effectively. For instance, the rail transportation offers the best options for transporting bulky goods at minimal cost. In addition, transportation ensures the speedy reception of goods and services by the customer. Furthermore, it is through transportation that goods are able to reach at the consumer end.

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Transportation maximizes the profits of an organization in that good and services are cleared from the organization warehouses faster.The organization uses transportations in many ways. Transportations within the country are done through the road and rail. Bulky goods that are destined for a long distance use the rail network. However, transportation of medium bulk goods is sometime done through road network.

Although, road transportation is preferred for shorter distances, sometime when urgency is of essence, road transportation is necessitated to deliver goods at longer distance. On the other hand, the organization opts for air transportation in case of urgent and overseas delivery. This option however, limits delivery to only non bulky orders. Most of the exports are through cargo ships which are relatively cheaper than freight delivery; this means of transport is used for bulky deliveries. The use of water transport is however slow and goods take relatively longer time to reach their destination. Road transportation entails both fuel-powered vehicles and non-fuel means.

The fuelled vehicles include large, medium-sized and small trucks as well as motor cycles. The bicycles which use no fuel are used mostly to deliver small quantities of goods within towns.The organization is able to maximize the efficiency of the transportation aspect in its supply chain. The organization ensures that there is enough motor vehicle available for transportation.

In addition it makes sure that each and every vehicle is used for its intended purpose only. Again, bicycles and motorcycle are enough for their relevant purposes. Where necessary, the company contracts reliable and efficient transportation company for its delivery needs through the road. Incase of railroad, ship and air transport the company has synchronized its supply chain system such that goods are available at the ports in time. The organization utilizes the road transport network to link the organization’s depot to the railway transit point, airports and the marine ports. The organization has also a warehousing facility where loading of goods is done.

Therefore, there are always goods available for transportation which avoids delay.The organization also maximizes the efficiency through personnel management. Therefore, the organization has a system that allows truck drivers to work in shift.

This approach ensures that the drivers have time to rest and in so doing minimize accidents.  Moreover, the personnel in this department are highly trained and the managements ensure that all business is conducted in a professional manner.The organizations can improve its use of transportation to optimize its supply chain management.

One way would be to contract a transportation company to handle all the transportation needs. In this regard, time and money spent on the transportation process is would be directed to the core business of the organization. Therefore, the supply department would be down sized to accommodate only few necessary personnel.

References:American Agricultural Economics Association (1969): American journal of agricultural economics, Volume 51Association for computing Machinery (2007): Supply Chain Transportation and Facility Design. Retrieved from http://pd.acm.org/sks_course.cfm?crs=oper0505. Accesses on September 20, 2007Bigham, C. T. & Roberts, M.

J. (2006): Transportation, Principles and Practice, Macmillan Press, New York.McGuire Air Force Base (2007): 305th Logistics Readiness Squadron, retrieved from http://public.mcguire.

amc.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=4029. Accessed on September 20, 2007