"Logistics: The Invisible Support
Structure", presented by Dr.
Darren Prokop, Professor of Logistics,
University of Alaska Anchorage.
What is logistics?
It is the art and
the science of managing three constraints,
time, physical space and location.
Every organization relies on logistics to
some degree in order to conduct business.
Organizations across the world may link
up in a supply chain in order to meet
some strategic goal.
But it is logistics that will make or
break that strategy.
Logistics is about getting
seven things right.
Get the right item, in the right
quantity and in the right condition,
delivered to the right customer, at
the right time, in the right location and
do all of this at the right price.
Logistics also makes or
breaks any transaction.
It facilitates transactions when
carriers and third party logistics
providers are available to move people and
items from one place to another.
It also facilitates
transactions when the support
infrastructure is in working order.
But logistics hinders transactions
when the infrastructure is subpar,
congested or impacted by emergencies.
It is also a hindrance if a lack
of competition among available
carriers keeps freight rates too high.
For most people logistics
is an invisible industry.
Most people turn on a light switch or
a water faucet and
not give much thought to how those
modern conveniences work so reliably.
It is very much the same for
the logistics industry.
For consumers this is both a blessing and
The blessing comes from the logistics
providers being so efficient and
reliable that one need not
give them much thought.
The curse is that if something should
go wrong, it can disrupt business and
even threaten lives.
A good way to appreciate the role
of logistics is to consider how it