Mapping and Improving Inbound Transportation: A Case Study at Astra Tech

Detta är en Uppsats för yrkesexamina på avancerad nivå från Luleå/Institutionen för ekonomi, teknik och samhälle

Sammanfattning: During the last decades companies primarily have focused their improvements on the outbound transportation. But the companies have recently come to realize the potential of improving the inbound transportation as well, which makes it interesting to study.
In the beginning, the purpose of this thesis was to study how companies handle their inbound transportation and evaluate the potential improvements from a cost perspective. However, there was a shift in purpose during the study because of problems at the case study company. The work focused on the mapping of inbound transportation rather than ways to improve competitiveness, as this area proved to be a bigger problem than expected.
A case study was conducted on a medical device company which has been growing rapidly in the past years and had not focused on inbound transportation. A mapping of the inbound transportation was carried out through qualitative interviews and internal material from the case study company. This created the foundation for seeking improvements, through the theoretical framework, for the problems detected by the mapping, which resulted in a number of improvements.
The results of this study show that inbound transportation is an important part of a company’s work. Despite this, companies seem to devote less focus to this area compared to outbound transportation, causing less control of the costs. However, by using the terms of delivery as control instruments, it is possible for the companies to take control of both inbound and outbound transportation. Companies should also make sure that they maximize the use of contract with its transporters, or review the options of outsourcing their logistic activities to a third or fourth part, and ensure that cost control is possible.
At last, companies can reduce their routine costs while the quality of the flow improves through targeted improvements to special parts of the supply chain. This gives the companies the opportunity to create a sustainable competitive advantage.