In my view, the “Just-In-Time” concept means improving product quality and managing all functions of a particular business in order to lower total costs. Since “Just-In-Time” is really the management process of making business work better, it is important to recognize some of the many issues outside of the manufacturing process itself that can affect the success of a “Just-In-Time” plan. These issues include vendor lead time control, delivery time management and distribution methods that optimize total unit costs.
While there is no question that the largest component of high technology, high-value product Industries freight is shipped by surface carriers, the mode selection by manufacturers has been changing. Looking at the surface transportation network and seeing how it is equipped to handle the increasingly time definite issue brought on by “Just-In-Time” reveals the following: very few of the surface freight systems in use today were originally designed to service high-tech//high-value markets. Nor were these systems, or the logistics planning techniques that have evolved to support them, ever designed to support the demanding scheduling requirements of the “Just-In-Time” concept.