includes the process of returned goods and how to deal with these items propereverse logisticsy and all operations related to the reuse of goods and materials in order to improve productivity, profitability, and efficiency of logistical organizations. REVERSE LOGISTICS involves all supply chain activities which occur in a reverse order. In general, REVERSE LOGISTICS can be defined as “the process of planning and implementing the efficient and cost effective control of the flow of raw materials, inventory being processed, final goods, and relevant information, from consumption point to origin point, aimed at reevaluation or proper disposal” (Rogers and Tibben Lembke, 1998). In other words REVERSE LOGISTICS is the process of the movement and transfer of goods and products that are capable of being returned in the supply chain (Murphy, 1986).
Sometimes REVERSE LOGISTICS is considered a subset of closed loop supply chains (CLSC). CLSC are a combination of forward supply chains and REVERSE LOGISTICS, which is usually organized and managed by the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) that supports its own production line (Blumberg, 2005). REVERSE LOGISTICS is often used to eliminate low consumption products. Due to available potential, 3P REVERSE LOGISTICS Ps have expanded efforts related to the return of goods in international associations (Richey et al., 2005). In fact, companies constantly have particular problems with accepting the returned goods and recovering the missed values.
Accurate implementation of REVERSE LOGISTICS operations will lead to an increase in customer satisfaction and a competitive advantage (Richey et al., 2005). Appropriate grounds of this accurate implementation lies in outsourcing REVERSE LOGISTICS propereverse logisticsy to third-party providers so that the companies can focus on other production activities without interfering in REVERSE LOGISTICS affairs. It is quite clear that this matter will increase the efficiency of supply chain performance. Sahay and Mohan (2006) believe that the main reasons to outsource REVERSE LOGISTICS are to reduce costs up to 27%, strategic reasons to 26%, process efficiency to 24%, and lack of internal capabilities.
Even though the main objective of outsourcing is to protect or increase the organization’s effectiveness, there are various factors that lead to outsourcing business aspects of organizations. Mello, Theodore, and Terry (2008) cited that the two most common motives for utilizing outsourcing are cost reduction and quality improvement. Numerous researchers have also supported these two motives. According to Lee and Walsh (2011), the most important objective of outsourcing among economic benefits is cost savings. However, it should be noted that in most cases, the objective of outsourcing in reverse supply chains is not just cost savings, but also to increase operation productivity and to improve services, which all lead to the increase in competitive advantage (Sahay and Mohan, 2006; Pagell et al., 2007; Ordoobadi, 2009). Previous studies conducted on outsourcing cleareverse logisticsy show that outsourcing can result in organizational effectiveness through minimizing and controlling organization costs (Kumar and Eickhoff, 2006; Lee, 2010).
Moreover, outsourcing can have a positive effect on the improvement of expected quality so that the quality improvement is sometimes guaranteed (Lee et al., 2011). Delegating operations to a third party can improve the cited processes because they have appropriate potential skills to run the operations (Lee, 2010; Baldwing, Love and Irani, 2001; Lee et al., 2011; Richey et al., 2005). As mentioned before, another stimulus for outsourcing is a lack of internal capability to perform REVERSE LOGISTICS operations within the organization, a fact corroborated by other studies like those conducted by Elmuti and Kathawala, 2000; Baldwing et al., 2001). Developing necessary skills for fulfilling special tasks through constant training requires much time and effort and can be very expensive. Therefore, outsourcing is often preferred to “in-house operations” because it lets the organizations focus their time and energy on the fields in which they are the best (Lee et al., 2011). In addition, outsourcing can provide a constant strategic relationship between or access to resources of service providers and continuous learning opportunities (Kumar et al., 2006; Lee, 2010). Outsourcing REVERSE LOGISTICS is a very common decision in the field of business. Many industrial organizations try to outsource their REVERSE LOGISTICS operations (Mead et al., 2002; Krumwiede et al., 2002; Kannan et al., 2012).
The literature review on our proposed methodology demonstrates that a lot of studies have used a hybrid model of SWOT and AHP (Alshomrani and Qamar, 2012; Oreski, 2012; Görener et al., 2012). This hybrid model is often used to improve the capability of using SWOT analysis because AHP can quantitatively determine the importance of the SWOT group factors (Kurttila et al., 2000). Görener et al. (2012) have stated that a lack of ranking the importance of factors in SWOT has led to inefficiency of this analytic model. Therefore, they combine SWOT analysis with the analytic hierarchy process so that quantitative strategic planning will be improved.
Fabac et al. (2011) identified the significance coefficients of SWOT factors by means of the AHP model so that the quantitative analytic model would be improved. A brief review of previous studies shows that the inefficiency of the SWOT analytic model in quantifying the factors has caused this analytic strategic model to be combined with AHP technique. Accordingly, Shrestha et al. (2004) investigated agricultural prospects and challenges through the SWOT analytic model combined with AHP. Masozeraet al. (2006) combined AHP and SWOT to assess the estimated beneficiaries with regard to suitable community-based management approaches. Kahraman et al. (2007) used the SWOT and AHP models to prioritize the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of the group in the first stage and to evaluate alternatives to electronic government strategy and make decisions about it in the second stage. انجام پایان نامه