Better economic performance should not be the sole objective of implementing logistics best practices. Instead, any such practice should also take into account the social and environmental impact of that standard. So say the proponents of the "bestLog" project, which aims to develop a best practices standard for logistics in Europe.
The European Commission, which is the European Union's executive branch, set up the study group known as the European Platform for Sustainable Logistics Best Practices, or bestLog, in 2006. The bestLog project is currently collecting information on best practices in European logistics and will disseminate that information across the continent.
Early on, the bestLog researchers performed a gap analysis of current logistics metrics. They discovered that those metrics have focused primarily on economic performance, said bestLog Project Manager Balkan Cetinkaya during a presentation at the April 2008 CSCMP Europe Conference in Brussels. Subsequently, bestLog decided that there was a need for a broader standard that included a social and environmental dimension in addition to the traditional economic focus, said Cetinkaya, who is also with the Berlin University of Technology.
The social component of the best practices will look at such aspects as health and safety. Ultimately, the project hopes to determine both quantitatively and qualitatively how logistics can improve social conditions.
The group expects to complete work on the standards in 2009. For more information, visit its website: www.bestlog.org.