1.Which fields of human activity require logistics? Justify your answers. Add your own Examples: the military? household? spare time? building a house?
2.What do these activities have in common? (many documents, a large number of people involved, a lot of equipment, careful planning, etc.).
3.What does logistics in economy involve?
education of employees? transport? environment protection? information technology?
warehousing? distribution of raw materials and goods?
social relationships among the employees of a company?
4.Read the definition of logistics and choose the correct word.
Logistics is the act / art of maintaining relationship / control over world-wide supply-chains by combination of transport / production, warehousing skills, distribution / company management and information policy / technology.
5.Match the names with their functions:
1. Information technology
bridges the geographical gaps in the complex pattern of manufacturing centers, sources of raw materials supplies, depot location and marketing outlets
keeps goods secure in the time gaps which separate 'production' from 'consumption'
accepts and holds stocks until required, and then routes them to the factories, wholesalers and retailers that require them
keeps track of where everything is, alerts those who need to be informed of amended 'instructions, documents stocks, orders, transits, arrivals and departures and permits to access its data banks
6.What is a logistician responsible for? Read the text and check your prediction.
A We live in a world where people want things - food, shelter, clothing, medical care, education, entertainment, etc. These wants(1) lead to huge ' demands' (2) for goods (3) and services, for there are now almost 6,000 million people on earth. To meet the demands producers around the world must provide enormous quantities of goods and vast array of services, each with its specialized requirements. It is these supplies (4) which pose the logistical problems, for we must cither move the goods to the consumers who require them or move the people to the places where the services can be enjoyed. It is the supply-chains for all these products and services which are the true subject-matter of logistics. The end of the logistical chain is when the finished product, available for immediate 'consumption' reaches the final 'consumer'. The full production-consumption cycle (5) reads: wants; enterprise; production; distribution; marketing; exchange (6); consumption; satisfaction and back to 'wants' again. Consumption gives satisfaction, but in so doing destroys production and we're back to 6,000 million people who want things.
B This is elementary stuff, but the way in which these 'wants' are satisfied in the modern, free enterprise world is far from elementary. The typical organization in the free (7) enterprise world today is the multinational company, engaged in multinational production. Manufacturing is rarely a one-site activity. Multiple-site manufacturing and assembly is the usual practice, and for the multinational company this means sites in a variety of countries spanning the five continents. Products may be designed in Japan; components may be manufactured in Taiwan or Singapore; sub-assemblies may be put together in Spain and the final product assembled in the United Kingdom and sold all over the European Union, North America, Australia and the Middle East.
C All this dispersal of production may come about for a variety of reasons. It may be because of local resources; because of particular skills in a workforce; because labour is cheaper in a particular country; because quality is high in a particular field of activity. Often the spreading of production has to do with the requirements of governments, who will only allow an activity to go ahead if it brings some tangible' benefits (8) to the people of their country. They may require all activities to be performed by nominally local companies, with a home national in an influential position on the Board. Whatever the reason (9), this type of production requires logistical services to keep control (10) of the many movements of raw materials, semi- manufacturers, components and end-products which are on the moved (11). This is the subject-matter of logistics, which seeks to give control over all these movements while at the same time providing a system which is flexible and can respond to changes in demands, closures of routes and other interruptions of normal procedures.
D Logistics is the art of maintaining control over world-wide supply-chains by a combination of transport, warehousing skills, distribution management and information technology. Transport bridges the geographical gaps in the complex (12) pattern of manufacturing centers, sources of raw material supplies, depot locations and marketing outlets which are such important features of the modern multinational company. Warehousing keeps goods of every sort (13), from raw materials to finished products, secure in the time gaps which separate 'production' from 'consumption'. Distribution centers accept and hold stocks until required, and then route them to the factories, wholesalers and retailers that require them. Information technology keeps track of where everything is, alerts (14) those who need to be informed of amended instructions, documents stocks, orders (15), transits, arrivals and departures and permits (16) everyone who is authorized to do so to access (17) its data banks, interrogate them and, if necessary, update them.
E The increased interest (18) in the activity called logistics has created a new term for the person making these logistical arrangements - the logistician. His task is to manage supply-chains with optimum efficiency supervising everything, keeping the chain free of bottlenecks, free of documentation difficulties, using the best equipment in the most efficient way, fast, cheap, economic, legal, environmentally friendly and, above all, on course to achieve the final mission. The mission is to supply finished goods into the marketplace where they will become available eventually to the consumers who require them.
7.Match the subtitles with the paragraphs in the text:
1.The role of a logistician
2.The subject-matter of logistics
4.The definition of logistics
8.Answer the following questions:
a) What is the main logistical problem imposed on transport operators?
b) What factors decide that multinational production is a must in modern, free enterprise world?
c) A multinational company has to fulfill requirements of the government of the country where it is located. What are the most common requirements?
d) Can you fill in the missing steps in the production-consumption cycle?