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Recovering Lost Profits by Improving Reverse Logistics

By Curtis Greve and Jerry Davis

Abstract: In our experiences, reverse logistics is one of the most often overlooked elements of the complete operations cycle. These experiences and observations are precisely why we commissioned this paper: we want to highlight how high-tech companies can realize near- and long-term benefits by taking control of their reverse logistics supply chain and making improvements – no matter how small.

We realize the perception that returns are a necessary evil to be avoided at all costs. Yet they present vast opportunity. Companies adept at reverse logistics treat returns as another form of inbound shipping, with processes and plans that allow them to drive top-line sales and bottom-line profits from savings. In other words, they understand that returns are always going to be a part of their business and look for every possible way to leverage reverse logistics to extract the hidden value.

Because high-tech companies have multiple opportunities for reverse logistics to impact the supply chain, they do not have to re-engineer their entire process to achieve tangible results. We’ve helped customers achieve greater sales through resale, and we’ve seen customers realize savings by reclaiming parts for their operations. While a greater investment in reverse logistics will yield more benefits, we’re confident that many companies can experience significant improvements if they take just a few of the steps outlined in this paper.

June 11, 2012


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