Cover: Material Distribution Improving Support to Army Operations in Peace and War

Material Distribution Improving Support to Army Operations in Peace and War

Published 1994

by John Halliday, Nancy Young Moore

Download Free Electronic Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 0.5 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.

This issue paper identifies problems in the DoD distribution system, describes industry's practices, and suggests what DoD should do to improve its operation. The underlying causes of the distribution problems are many and complicated, but they fall into four general categories: structural issues, user reactions, unresponsiveness to change, and low standards. On the other hand, commercial organizations have had tremendous success improving their distribution processes through a combination of organizational and technological change. Industry differs from DoD in that it operates to make a profit, but it also differs because its distribution system focuses on a single goal--a satisfied customer. The authors conclude by stating that the DoD should: (1) study industry distribution models carefully and selectively use or adapt them; (2) reengineer the system to determine which steps can be eliminated, automated, or combined, which technologies are needed, and which of those offer the largest gain; and (3) establish high standards of performance for each distribution element and measure the performance of each element against the standard.

Research conducted by

This report is part of the RAND issue paper series. The issue paper was a product of RAND from 1993 to 2003 that contained early data analysis, an informed perspective on a topic, or a discussion of research directions, not necessarily based on published research. The issue paper was meant to be a vehicle for quick dissemination intended to stimulate discussion in a policy community.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.