Today’s publication is related to one of the supermarkets that I use to the weekly shopping. This is Carrefour supermarket, and I find it interesting to know how they are organized internally to carry out a good job and provide good service.

Carrefour originated from France, it is an international retailer that is the worlds second-largest and the largest in Europe, and it is a leader in the industry.

There are four kinds of stores in Carrefour:

  • Hypermarkets
  • Supermarkets
  • Discount
  • Convenience

Cost of logistics:

cost logistics

His subcontrator Kuehne+Nagel is in charge of the management of a part of its supply chain. Carrefour has focused its efforts on creating a supply chain capable of satisfying the needs of all customers:

  • Response times
  • Reduced stock
  • Increase the quality of the supply chain
  • Control the costs of logistics operations

They also introduce new technologies into their processes. Carrefour sells a high number of products, including its own brands. Technological tools that allow all products to be available and in the best conditions:

  • Infolog
  • Scheduler

In the following image, we can see the flow of information processes of Carrefour.

flow information

In adition, they move to “river and rail” transport to reduce truck mileage and safeguard the environment. Furthermore, they minimize pallets size for effective inventory management.

They have an owner transportation system, but also they use a 3PL system (3PL = logistics services for part, or all of their supply chain management functions.)

ERP systems implemented by Carrefour backed by EDS.

Generix is the main Supply Chain Software provider. Integration of 3PL and logistics capabilities of Carrefour and suppliers.

Warehose management system provided by generix.

In the future, Carrefour will try to use green logistics technologies and will try to develop more efficient systems.

Logistics in Hospitals

Last day I went to the Hospital de la Ribera to visit a familiar, so I realized that in that floor there was more logistics than I could imagine. My doubts about how the staff (nurses, doctors, nursing assistant…) can handle and organize the materials and medicines that each patient will need, when I finished I had more clearly. Directly, I took some photos about storages and transportation modes in the floor.

In each floor there are two storages (Magatzem 1 and Magatzem 2) where they keep the boxes in shelves. As we can see in the photo, the shelf is divided in five shelves (five heights). Not only they store the boxes with medicines and materials in these storages, they also include the room necessities including the clothes for the patients, bathroom stuff and bed stuff.

StoragesTo guarantee a direct access for these materials (medicines, tools and materials that they need to treat the patients) they transport from the storage to offices. In each floor there are two offices, as we can see in the photo below, and next to these offices, there is a huge shelf, very close for the employees, and is divided with several departments. Inside of each department is deposited the specific material including a label outside with the name.

IMG_7473In reference to transport the medicines and materials that each patient need, they have a kind of cart, which we also can see in the photo, with numbered departments for each room (Each room has a number). They only have to revise what medicines will need each patient in data base and put it in the material cart. So, the nurses only have to load one time with the required medicines. Moreover, they have a registered datasheets that they can consult and take some notes while they visit the patients. Finally, they can start for the first room until the last one, without come back until their office to bring for each patient the medicines that they will need.

IMG_7477To sum up, seeing the photos could think that there are some aspects we could improve, regarding of several waste next to the offices, efficiently use of the space in the shelves or in the departments or even include a kind of cart with a computer system integrated to write down each time that you visit a patient room, the information that you later have to write in the office. But, the most important thing is that you also take into account that there are a lot of simple logistics applied in each different life scenario.

Efficiency in Logistics and its positive consequences in Marketing

 As in any other Departments of a company, efficiency orientation in Logistics doesn’t consists only in cost optimization, but also in the quality of the process. In this case, the quality variable would be related with the expended time and other conditions, such as avoiding or minimizing the number of damaged or lost packets.

It is recommendable then not to focus only in the input (cost) or in the ouput (quality or performance) of the process, but consider both as equal objectives and try to balance them.

Example: improvement of high service level and its increment in costs.

Although Logistics is usually seen just as an internal process of the company, which the final customer rarely knows or cares about, the truth is by achieving the efficiency on it not only the company wins, but also the customer results benefit from it.

On the one hand, reducing the delivery time is an advantage that need no further explanation. Even more nowadays, with the continuous increase of online sales.

On the other hand, having an efficient Logistics process companies can be able to provide tracking service to the customers while the packet is on its way to the destination, which not only helps to increase the confidence of the customer in the company but also makes difficult incur in loose of packets problems.

So, in conclusion an efficient Logistics process not only makes a company save an important amount of time and money, it also helps to increase sales, customer loyalty and improves the image of the company.