The Ultimate Guide to Logistics & Supply Chain Acronyms: Your A-Z Reference Library

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Harshida Acharya

Partner & CMO


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Logistics and supply chain management are complex fields that involve a wide range of activities and operations. To help navigate the terminology and jargon of this industry, we have compiled the ultimate reference library of all logistics acronyms ever.

Here are some explanations of the most common terms you may encounter:


1PL: First-Party Logistics

A company’s internal logistics operations that manage their own transportation and goods. The company uses its own resources and personnel to plan, execute, and control the logistics processes.

2PL: Second-Party Logistics

Involves working directly with a logistics provider to handle specific transportation or logistics services. The 2PL provider offers dedicated logistics solutions tailored to the needs of the company. Unlike a 3PL provider, the 2PL provider works directly with the company and is accountable only to the company, not to other clients.

3PL: Third Party Logistics

The outsourcing of supply chain management functions to a third-party provider that specializes in transportation, warehousing, and other logistics services.

3R: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

A framework for managing waste and reducing the environmental impact of supply chains.

4PL: Fourth Party Logistics

The outsourcing of logistics activities to a specialized external organization that manages the entire logistics process and acts as a single point of contact for the customer.

4R: Right Product, Right Quantity, Right Time, Right Place

A framework for optimizing inventory management.

5C: Capacity, Capital, Customers, Cost, Competition

A framework for analyzing business opportunities and risks.

5R: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Recover, Respect

A framework for managing waste and reducing the environmental impact of supply chains.

6 Sigma:

A methodology for improving quality by reducing defects in processes.

6S: Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize, Sustain, Safety

An extension of the 5S methodology, with an additional focus on workplace safety.

7R: Remove, Reduce, Reuse, Repair, Refurbish, Remanufacture, Recycle

A framework for managing waste and reducing the environmental impact of supply chains.

8D: Eight Disciplines

A problem-solving methodology used in quality control and management.

10+2: Importer Security Filing and Additional Carrier Requirements

A program introduced by US Customs and Border Protection to improve cargo security.

10+2+2: Importer Security Filing and Additional Carrier Requirements (ISF), and Container Status Messages (CSM)

An extension of the 10+2 program introduced by US Customs and Border Protection to improve cargo security.

10x: Ten times improvement

A Lean Six Sigma term used to describe a goal of achieving ten times the improvement in a process or product.

20/40/45/53: Standard container sizes

The most commonly used container sizes for shipping goods by sea or land, measured in feet.


A/P or AP: Accounts Payable

The money a business owes to its suppliers for the goods or services received on credit.

A/R or AR: Accounts Receivable

The money a business is owed by its customers for the goods or services sold on credit.

ABC: Activity-based Costing

A method of allocating costs to products or services based on the activities required to produce them.

ABI: Automated Broker Interface

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) system that allows brokers to electronically submit data required for clearing goods through customs.

ABM: Activity-based Management

A management approach that focuses on improving business processes and activities to increase efficiency and reduce costs.

ABP: Activity-based Planning

A process of developing a plan to manage resources based on the activities required to achieve specific goals.

ABS: Automated Batch Screening

A CBP system that allows for the automatic screening of shipments against CBP databases for potential risks.

ACAS: Air Cargo Advanced Screening

A CBP program that requires airlines to provide pre-loading information on air cargo shipments bound for the United States.

ACE: Automated Commercial Environment

A CBP system that streamlines the import and export process by allowing businesses to electronically submit and receive data from CBP.

ACH: Automated Clearinghouse

An electronic payment system that allows for the transfer of funds between financial institutions.

ACI: Advance Commercial Information

A Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) program that requires carriers to provide pre-loading information on commercial goods entering Canada.

ACROSS: Accelerated Commercial Release Operations Support System

A CBSA system that facilitates the release of commercial goods entering Canada by providing an automated risk assessment and expedited clearance process.

ACS: Automated Commercial System

A legacy CBP system that has been replaced by ACE.

AD: Anti-dumping

The practice of selling goods in a foreign market at a price lower than the domestic market price.

ADD: Anti-dumping Duties

Additional fees levied on imported goods found to be sold at less than their normal value.

ADR: Agreement on Dangerous Goods by Road:

A multilateral treaty that regulates the transportation of hazardous materials by road in Europe.

AEI: Advance Electronic Information

A CBP program that requires carriers to provide electronic data on cargo shipments bound for the United States.

AEO: Authorized Economic Operator

A program established by the World Customs Organization that recognizes businesses that meet certain security and compliance standards.

AES: Automated Export System

A CBP system that allows for the electronic filing of export information required by the U.S. government.

AFIP: Administración Federal de Ingresos Públicos

The tax authority of Argentina.

AFR: Advance Filing Rules

A Japan Customs program that requires carriers to provide pre-loading information on cargo shipments bound for Japan.

AGV: Automated Guided Vehicle

A self-guided vehicle used in warehouses and factories to transport materials and goods.

AIDC – Automatic Identification and Data Capture

The process of automatically identifying and collecting data using technologies such as barcodes, RFID, and biometrics.

AIES: Automated Information Exchange

A CBSA system that enables the electronic exchange of data between CBSA and its external partners.

AII: Automated Invoice Interface

A CBP system that allows for the electronic submission of commercial invoices for imported goods.

AITT: Association of Industrial Truck Trainers

An organization that provides training and certification for industrial truck operators.

ALE: Air-Land Emergency

A transportation method that combines air and ground transportation for the fastest and most efficient delivery of goods in emergency situations.

ALS: Advanced Logistics Systems

Advanced computer systems and software used to optimize logistics processes and improve efficiency.

AMR: Autonomous Mobile Robot

A type of robot that can move and operate without human intervention, often used in warehouses and manufacturing facilities.

AMS: Automated Manifest System

A CBP system that allows for the electronic submission of cargo manifests for vessels entering the United States.

AMWF: Army Most Wanted Fugitives

A U.S. Army program that identifies individuals who are wanted for crimes committed on military installations.

ANSI: American National Standards Institute

A non-profit organization that develops and promotes voluntary consensus standards for a wide range of industries.

AOBRD: Automatic On-board Recording Device

An electronic device used in the transportation industry to track a driver’s hours of service and other operational data.

APEC: Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation

An intergovernmental forum for 21 Pacific Rim countries that promotes free trade and economic cooperation throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

APHIS: Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service

A branch of the United States Department of Agriculture responsible for protecting American agriculture and natural resources from pests and diseases.

API: Application Program Interface

A set of protocols and tools for building software applications that specifies how software components should interact.

APICS: Association for Operations Management

A professional association that provides education and certification programs for supply chain and operations management professionals.

APS: Advanced Planning and Scheduling

A computer-based system that helps manufacturers plan production schedules and manage resources in real-time.

AQIS: Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service

The agency responsible for managing quarantine and biosecurity risks associated with goods imported into Australia.

ARL: Accounts Receivable Ledger

A record of all the money owed to a business by its customers for goods or services provided on credit.

ARMAB: Agency Revenue Management Advisory Board

A board established by the United States Customs and Border Protection agency to oversee the development and implementation of revenue management policies and procedures.

AS/RS: Automated Storage and Retrieval System

A computer-controlled system that automatically stores and retrieves goods from a warehouse or storage facility.

ASIN: Amazon Standard Identification Number

A unique identifier assigned by Amazon to each product listed on its marketplace, used to identify and track products for inventory and cataloging purposes.

ASN: Advance Shipment Notice

A notification sent by a supplier to a customer or retailer to alert them of an upcoming delivery and provide details about the shipment.

ATA: Air Transport Association

An association of airlines and aviation-related businesses that promotes safety and efficiency in the airline industry.

ATA: American Trucking Association

A trade organization representing the interests of the trucking industry in the United States.

ATAC: Air Transport of Canada

A trade association representing the interests of the Canadian air transport industry.

ATA Carnet: Admission Temporaire/Temporary Admission

An international customs document used to temporarily import and export goods without paying duty or taxes.

ATD: Advance Trade Data

The information about a shipment that is transmitted to customs authorities in advance of the shipment’s arrival.

ATD: Actual Time of Departure

The exact time that a shipment departs from a specific location.

ATF: Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms

A bureau within the United States Department of Justice that enforces federal laws related to alcohol, tobacco, firearms, and explosives.

ATP: Available to Promise

A feature in supply chain management systems that calculates the quantity of a product that can be promised to a customer on a specific date, based on current inventory levels, production schedules, and other factors.

ATR: Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) Transit

A customs status that provides certain benefits to companies engaged in international trade, such as simplified customs procedures and priority treatment.

ATS: Automated Targeting System

A system used by United States Customs and Border Protection to assess the risk of cargo and passengers entering the country.

AVL: Automated Vehicle Locator

A device used to track the location of vehicles in real-time.

AWB: Air Waybill

A document used in the air transport industry that serves as a contract between the shipper and the carrier for the transportation of goods.


B/L or BOL: Bill of Lading

A legal document that serves as a contract of carriage and receipt for the goods being transported by a carrier.

B2B: Business-to-Business

Refers to commerce transactions between businesses, such as between a manufacturer and a wholesaler.

B2B2C: Business-to-business-to-consumer

Involves the sale of products or services from one business to another, which in turn sells them to end consumers.

B2C: Business-to-Consumer

Refers to commerce transactions between a business and individual consumers, such as online shopping.

B2G: Business to Government

Refers to transactions between businesses and government entities, such as when a company bids on a government contract.

B2R: Business to Retailer

The process of selling products or services from a business to a retailer. This is a common supply chain practice where a manufacturer or distributor sells products to a retailer.

BAF: Bunker Adjustment Factor.

An additional charge added to shipping rates to account for fluctuations in fuel costs.

BCD: Border crossing document

A document required for goods to cross international borders. It includes information on the type and quantity of goods being transported, as well as the country of origin and destination.

BGA: Ball grid array

A type of surface-mount packaging used for integrated circuits. It has solder balls on the underside of the package that allow it to be mounted directly onto a circuit board.

BI: Business Intelligence

The process of collecting and analyzing data to help businesses make informed decisions.

BIS: Bureau of Industry and Security

A division of the U.S. Department of Commerce that focuses on national security and foreign policy issues related to the export and import of goods and technologies.

BOLI: Benefits of Inventory

The benefits a company gains from maintaining a certain level of inventory, including improved customer service and reduced lead times.

BOM: Bill of Materials

A document that lists all the raw materials, components, and assemblies required to manufacture a particular product, including quantities and part numbers.

BOP: Balance of Payments

A record of all economic transactions made between one country and the rest of the world. It includes trade in goods and services, as well as financial transactions.

BPA: Business process automation

The use of technology to automate routine business processes. This includes activities such as data entry, document management, and customer service.

BPM: Business Process Management

The practice of improving business processes to increase efficiency and effectiveness.

BPMN: Business Process Model and Notation

A graphical notation used to represent business processes.

BPO: Business Process Outsourcing

A company outsources a specific business process, such as accounting or customer service, to a third-party provider.

BPR: Business Process Reengineering

The radical redesign of business processes to achieve dramatic improvements in performance and efficiency.

BSC: Balanced Scorecard

A strategic management tool that helps organizations track and communicate progress toward their goals.

BTO: Build to Order

A manufacturing strategy in which products are only produced after an order is received.


C/I or CI: Commercial Invoice

A document used in international trade that provides an itemized list of goods in a shipment along with other relevant details such as their value and country of origin.

C/O or COO: Certificate of Origin

A document that certifies the country where the goods being exported were manufactured or produced.

CAAC: Civil Aviation Administration of China

The civil aviation authority of China is responsible for the regulation of civil aviation and airspace in the country.

CAATSA: Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act

A US federal law that imposes sanctions on individuals, entities, and countries engaged in activities that threaten the national security interests of the United States.

CADEX: Customs Automated Data Exchange

A Canadian electronic system used to transmit customs-related information and documentation.

CAED: Canadian Automated Export Declaration

An electronic declaration system used by Canadian exporters to report goods being exported to other countries.

CAF: Currency Adjustment Factor

A surcharge added to the ocean freight cost to adjust for currency fluctuations between the port of origin and the port of destination.

CAFTA: Central American Free Trade Agreement

A free trade agreement between the United States and several Central American countries, including Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic.

CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

A measure of the rate of return on an investment over a specified period of time.

CAPA: Corrective and Preventive Action

A process for identifying and addressing quality problems in order to prevent them from recurring.

CAPEX: Capital Expenditures

Refers to the expenses incurred by a company for purchasing or upgrading physical assets, such as buildings, equipment, and technology, used in the supply chain.

CARM: CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management

A new system being implemented by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to modernize and improve its assessment and revenue management processes.

CBP: U.S. Customs and Border Protection

A federal law enforcement agency responsible for regulating and facilitating international trade, collecting import duties and taxes, and enforcing US trade laws.

CBSA: Canada Border Services Agency

A federal law enforcement agency responsible for administering Canadian customs, immigration, and border services.

CC: Customs Clearance

Refers to the process of getting the necessary customs approvals and documentation to allow goods to enter or leave a country.

CCN: Cargo Control Number

A unique number assigned to each shipment entering Canada that is used to track the movement of the goods throughout the customs clearance process.

CDL: Commercial Driver’s License

A license required by truck drivers to operate commercial vehicles.

CEP: Customer Experience Platform

A type of supply chain software that provides end-to-end visibility into customer interactions and experiences.

CETA: Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement

A free trade agreement between Canada and the European Union aimed at reducing trade barriers and increasing economic cooperation.

CFIA: Canadian Food Inspection Agency

A federal agency responsible for ensuring the safety and quality of food, animal, and plant products in Canada.

CFR: Code of Federal Regulations

A collection of regulations and rules promulgated by the executive branch of the US government.

CFR or C&F: Cost and Freight

A pricing term used in international trade that includes the cost of goods and the cost of shipping them to the port of destination.

CFS: Container Freight Station

A warehouse or facility used for the consolidation and deconsolidation of shipping containers.

CGCVP: Coast Guard List of Vessels Prohibited

A list maintained by the US Coast Guard of vessels that are prohibited from entering US waters due to safety or security concerns.

CHB: Customs House Brokerage

A service provided by customs brokers to help importers and exporters comply with customs regulations and facilitate the movement of goods across borders.

CIF: Cost, Insurance, and Freight

A pricing term that includes the cost of the goods, marine insurance, and freight charges to transport the goods to the port of destination.

CLN: Collaborative Logistics Network

A network of logistics and transportation professionals who work together to improve supply chain efficiency and reduce costs.

CLN: Collaborative Logistics Network

A regulation for the safe handling, storage, and transport of chemicals in the supply chain.

CMV: Commercial Motor Vehicle

A motor vehicle used for commercial purposes, such as transporting goods or passengers.

COD: Collect on Delivery or Cash on Delivery

A payment method in which the recipient of a shipment pays for the goods at the time of delivery.

COFC: Container on Flat Car

A method of transporting shipping containers using specially designed railcars.

COGS: Cost of Goods Sold

The cost of producing or acquiring the goods that are sold by a company.

COO: Country of Origin

The country where a product was manufactured or produced.

CPFR: Collaborative Planning, Forecasting, and Replenishment

A process that involves sharing information between retailers and suppliers to improve supply chain efficiency and reduce inventory costs.

CPG: Consumer Packaged Goods

A category of goods that are sold to consumers in packages or containers, such as food, beverages, and household products.

CPS: Commercial Payment Services

A financial service that facilitates payment between companies in different countries.

CPSC: Consumer Product Safety Commission

An independent agency of the United States government that regulates the safety of consumer products. 

CMS: Container Management System

A software system used to manage the movement and storage of shipping containers.

CRM: Customer Relationship Management

A strategy for managing a company’s interactions with customers and potential customers. 

CSA: Compliance, Safety, Accountability

A safety measurement and performance program used by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to improve large truck and bus safety on the highways.

CSA: Customs Self-Assessment

A program that allows for expedited clearance of pre-approved, low-risk shipments across the Canada-US border.

CSA: Canadian Standards Association

A not-for-profit standards organization in Canada that develops and publishes standards for a variety of industries. 

CSCL: China Shipping Container Lines

One of the largest container shipping companies based in China.

CSCMP: Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals

A professional organization that provides education, research, and networking opportunities for supply chain professionals. 

CSR: Customer Service Representative

A person who interacts directly with customers of a company to provide information and assistance with products or services. 

CTM: Collaborative Transportation Management

A supply chain software that enables collaboration between shippers, carriers, and logistics providers to optimize transportation operations.

C-TPAT: Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism

A voluntary program led by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency that aims to improve the security of international supply chains. 

CTP: Constrained Transportation Planning

A supply chain software that helps companies optimize their transportation networks by taking into account constraints such as capacity and lead time.

CTS: Cargo Tracking System

A supply chain software that provides real-time tracking of cargo shipments.

CVD: Countervailing Duties

Additional import duties imposed by a country in order to counteract the effects of subsidies provided by another country to its exporters. 

CWT: Hundredweight

A unit of measurement for weight in the United States equal to 100 pounds.


DAP: Delivered at Place

A delivery term where the seller is responsible for delivering the goods to the buyer at a specified place of destination.

DC: Distribution Center

A facility used for receiving, storing, and distributing goods to customers or retail stores.

DDP: Delivered Duty Paid

A delivery term where the seller is responsible for delivering the goods to the buyer at a specified place of destination, and also responsible for all costs associated with bringing the goods to that destination.

DDTC: Directorate of Defense Trade Controls

A U.S. government agency responsible for controlling the export and temporary import of defense articles and defense services.

DEM: Delivered Ex-Ship

A delivery term where the seller is responsible for delivering the goods to the buyer at a specified port of destination, but is not responsible for unloading the goods from the ship.

DFATD: Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development

A former Canadian government department responsible for the country’s foreign relations, international trade, and development assistance.

DFO: Department of Fisheries and Oceans

A Canadian government department responsible for the management and protection of marine resources and habitats.

DFRL: Design for Reverse Logistics

A design approach that considers the end-of-life stages of products and aims to optimize the recovery, reuse, or disposal of materials and components.

DFZ: Duty Free Zone

A designated area where goods can be stored or processed without being subject to customs duties or taxes.

DG: Dangerous Goods

Substances or articles that pose a risk to health, safety, property, or the environment during transport.

DHS: U.S. Department of Homeland Security

A U.S. government agency responsible for protecting the country from security threats and ensuring public safety.

DIF: Document Image Functionality

A feature of document management systems that enables users to capture, store, retrieve, and view digital images of documents.

DIFOT: Delivery In Full On Time

A performance metric used in logistics to measure the percentage of orders that are delivered in full and on time.

DimWt: Dimensional Weight

A method of calculating the shipping cost based on the size of the package rather than its actual weight.

DIS: Document Image System

A computer-based system used for storing, managing, and retrieving digital images of documents.

DMAIC: Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control

A problem-solving methodology used in Six Sigma to improve business processes.

DN: Daily Notice

A document that provides information on the status of shipments and their expected delivery dates.

DNL: Do Not Load

A designation used to indicate that a shipment should not be loaded onto a transport vehicle due to safety or regulatory reasons.

DOA: U.S. Department of Agriculture

A U.S. government agency responsible for regulating and promoting agriculture, forestry, and food production.

DOC: U.S. Department of Commerce

A U.S. government agency responsible for promoting economic growth and international trade.

DOD: U.S. Department of Defense

A U.S. government agency responsible for national security and military operations.

DOE: U.S. Department of Energy

A U.S. government agency responsible for promoting energy security, environmental quality, and scientific research.

DOSCU: Department of State Cuba

A U.S. government agency responsible for overseeing diplomatic relations with Cuba.

DOT: U.S. Department of Transportation

A U.S. government agency responsible for regulating and promoting transportation safety, infrastructure, and services.

DP: Demand Planning

A process of forecasting and managing the demand for products or services to optimize inventory levels and supply chain performance.

DPL: Denied Persons List (formerly Denied Parties List)

A U.S. government list of individuals, organizations, and companies prohibited from doing business with U.S. companies due to national security or foreign policy concerns.

DSL: Dynamic Screening List

A real-time database used to screen and monitor individuals, companies, and organizations for compliance with export control regulations.

DSD: Direct-to-Store Delivery

A distribution model in which products are shipped directly from the manufacturer or supplier to retail stores, bypassing the traditional distribution center.

DTC: Direct to Consumer

A business model where a company sells its products directly to the end consumers without any intermediaries like retailers or wholesalers, usually through e-commerce or online channels.

DUNS: Data Universal Numbering System

A unique nine-digit identifier used to identify businesses, especially in the context of international trade.

DVIR: Driver’s Vehicle Inspection Report

A document completed by drivers to report any defects or issues with their commercial motor vehicles before and after a trip.


EAM: Enterprise Asset Management

Enterprise Asset Management refers to the management of an organization’s assets, including physical and digital assets, throughout their lifecycle.

EAN: European Article Number

A barcode system used globally for identifying products in the supply chain.

EAR: Export Administration Regulations

A set of rules and regulations that govern the export and re-export of certain items, including goods, software, and technology, from the United States to other countries.

EC: European Community

The group of countries that make up the European Union and some other countries in Europe that have close ties with the EU.

ECR: Efficient Consumer Response

A strategy in the retail industry to improve supply chain efficiency and reduce costs.

ECCN: Export Control Classification Number

A code used by the United States government to identify items that are subject to export controls.

ECCRD: Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Document

A document that outlines the technical requirements for using the United States government’s electronic systems for trade.

ECS: Export Control System

A system used by governments to control the export of certain goods and technology.

eCSD: Electronic Consignment Security Declaration

A document used in the European Union to declare the security status of goods being transported.

EDI: Electronic Data Interchange

The electronic exchange of business documents between organizations.

EDIFACT: Electronic Data Interchange for Administration, Commerce, and Transport

A set of international standards for the electronic exchange of business documents.

EEC: European Economic Community

The predecessor of the European Union, which was established in 1993.

EEI: Electronic Export Information

Information that must be filed with the United States government when goods are exported from the United States.

EFT: Electronic Funds Transfer

The electronic transfer of money between banks or other financial institutions.

EFTA: European Free Trade Association

A regional trade organization made up of four European countries: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland.

EIN: Exporter Identification Number

A unique number assigned to companies that export goods from the United States.

ELD: Electronic Logging Device

A device used to record a commercial driver’s hours of service.

EMEA: Europe, Middle East, Africa

A geographic region that includes Europe, parts of the Middle East, and Africa.

ENS: Entry Summary Declaration

A document used in the European Union to declare the details of goods entering the EU.

EOBR: Electronic On-Board Recorder

A device used in commercial vehicles to record a driver’s hours of service.

EOQ: Economic Order Quantity

The optimal quantity of inventory to order at one time that minimizes total inventory costs by balancing the costs of ordering and holding inventory.

EPA: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

A government agency responsible for protecting human health and the environment in the United States.

EPCSA: European Port Community Systems Association

An association that represents the interests of port community systems in Europe.

EPZ: Export Processing Zone

A designated area within a country that is set up to encourage and facilitate exports.

ERP: Enterprise Resource Planning

Software systems used by organizations to manage and integrate their core business processes.

ETA: Estimated Time of Arrival

The expected time of arrival of a shipment or vehicle at a particular location.

ETD: Estimated Time of Departure

The expected time a shipment will depart from its origin.

EU: European Union

A political and economic union of 27 member states located primarily in Europe.

EUC: End User Certificate

A document used in international trade to certify the final destination of goods and ensure compliance with export regulations.

EUMWF: Europe’s Most Wanted Fugitives

A list of the most wanted criminals in Europe.

EUS: European Union Sanctions

Measures imposed by the European Union to restrict trade or economic activity with certain countries or entities.

EWR: Early Warning Report

A report filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) by manufacturers of motor vehicles or equipment when they discover a safety-related defect or noncompliance.

EXS: Exit Summary

A document used in the European Union to declare the details of goods leaving the EU.

EXW: Ex Works

An Incoterm indicating that the seller is only responsible for making the goods available at their premises, and the buyer is responsible for all transportation costs and risks.


FAA: Federal Aviation Administration

A U.S. government agency responsible for regulating and overseeing all aspects of civil aviation in the United States.

FAST: Fast and Secure Trade

A voluntary program between the United States and Canada that allows for expedited processing of low-risk shipments crossing the border.

FBA: Fulfillment by Amazon

A service provided by Amazon that allows sellers to store their products in Amazon’s fulfillment centers. Amazon takes care of picking, packing, and shipping the products to customers, as well as handling returns and customer service inquiries.

FBL: Freight Forwarder Bill of Lading

A document issued by a freight forwarder that serves as evidence of a contract of carriage and receipt of cargo.

FBM: Fulfillment by Merchant

A fulfillment method in which the seller handles all aspects of the fulfillment process, including storing inventory, packing and shipping orders, and handling returns and customer service inquiries.

FCA: Free Carrier

A shipping term that specifies the point at which the responsibility for the goods transfers from the seller to the buyer.

FCC: Federal Communications Commission

A U.S. government agency responsible for regulating communications by radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable.

FCL: Full-Container Load

A shipping term used when a shipper has enough cargo to fill a full container, as opposed to LCL (Less-Than-Container Load).

FCPA: Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

A U.S. law that prohibits U.S. companies and individuals from bribing foreign officials to obtain or retain business.

FDA: U.S. Food & Drug Administration

A U.S. government agency responsible for ensuring the safety and efficacy of food, drugs, and medical devices.

FDAWL: Food and Drug Administration Warning Letter

A letter issued by the FDA to a company that is in violation of FDA regulations or guidelines.

FedEx: Federal Express

A multinational courier delivery services company headquartered in the United States.

FEFO: First Expired, First Out

A method of inventory management that prioritizes selling or using products with the earliest expiration dates first to minimize waste and spoilage.

FEI: FDA Establishment Identifier

A unique identifier assigned by the FDA to a facility that manufactures, processes, packs, or holds food for consumption in the United States.

FEU: Forty-foot Equivalent Unit

FEU: Forty-foot Equivalent Unit: FEU is a unit of measurement used in container shipping that refers to a standard 40-foot shipping container.

FF: Freight Forwarder

An FF is a company that arranges for the transportation of goods on behalf of shippers.

FIATA: International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations

A non-governmental organization that represents the freight forwarding industry worldwide.

FIFO: First In, First Out

A method of inventory management that assumes the first items placed in inventory are the first sold or used.

FIRMS: Facilities Information and Resources Management System

An information system used by ocean carriers and terminal operators to exchange information on container movements.

FLT: Fork Lift Truck

An industrial vehicle equipped with forks or blades used for lifting, carrying, and moving materials over short distances in warehouses, manufacturing plants, and other settings.

FMC: Federal Maritime Commission

A U.S. government agency responsible for regulating ocean-borne transportation in the foreign commerce of the United States.

FMCSA: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

A U.S. government agency responsible for regulating commercial motor vehicles in the United States.

FMEA: Failure Modes and Effects Analysis

A method used to identify and mitigate potential failures in a system or process.

FMS: Foreign Military Sales

A program run by the United States government that enables foreign governments to purchase defense equipment and services from U.S. companies.

FOB: Free on Board

A shipping term that indicates when the risk of loss or damage to goods passes from the seller to the buyer.

FPA: Free of Particular Average

A marine insurance term that indicates that the insurance policy covers partial losses only if they are caused by a named peril.

FROB: Freight Remain On Board

A term used to describe cargo that remains on board a vessel while it is in transit through a country without being unloaded.

FSIS: Food Safety Inspection Service

A U.S. government agency responsible for ensuring that meat, poultry, and egg products are safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled.

FSR: Freight Status Request

A request for information on the status of a shipment, typically made by a shipper or consignee to a carrier.

FSSAI: The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India

A regulatory body responsible for ensuring the safety and quality of food products in India. FSSAI sets standards for food safety and hygiene, regulates food imports and exports, and monitors food safety across the country to protect public health.

FSVP: Foreign Supplier Verification Programs

A U.S. government program that requires importers to verify that the food they import meets U.S. safety standards.

FTA: Free Trade Agreement

A treaty between two or more countries that eliminates or reduces trade barriers, such as tariffs and quotas, on goods and services traded between them.

FTA: Freight Transport Association

A UK-based organization that represents the transport industry and provides various services, including training and legal advice.

FTC: Federal Trade Commission

An independent agency of the US government responsible for promoting consumer protection and eliminating and preventing anticompetitive business practices in the market.

FTL: Full Truckload

A shipping option where an entire truck is dedicated to a single shipment, typically for larger quantities of goods.

FTT: Freight Transport Tax

A tax that is imposed on the transport of goods by road, rail, air, or water.

FTZ: Free Trade Zone and Foreign Trade Zone

A designated geographic area within a country where goods can be imported, stored, handled, and re-exported without being subject to customs duties and other taxes. FTZs are intended to encourage international trade and investment.

FV: Floating Vessel

A type of vessel that is used for transporting goods on water.

FVR: Freight Volume Rebate

A rebate that is offered by carriers to shippers who transport large volumes of goods.

FWS: Fish and Wildlife Service

A U.S. government agency that is responsible for managing and conserving fish, wildlife, and plant species.

FZ: Free Zone

An area in which goods can be stored, handled, or manufactured without being subject to customs duties or other taxes.


GAAP: Generally Accepted Accounting Principles

A set of standards and rules that publicly-traded companies in the United States must follow when preparing financial statements. The purpose of GAAP is to ensure consistency, comparability, and accuracy in financial reporting.

GAGI: Government Agency Goods Item

A specific classification of goods and materials that are owned by government agencies, including the military. These items may be subject to specific regulations and requirements related to their purchase, use, and disposal.

GATT: General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade

A multilateral treaty signed in 1947 that sought to reduce barriers to international trade and promote free trade. GATT was succeeded by the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 1995.

GB/L: Government Bill of Lading

A document used by the U.S. government to contract for the transportation of goods and materials. The GB/L serves as a receipt, contract, and shipping document.

GDP: Gross Domestic Product

A measure of the total value of goods and services produced within a country’s borders in a given period of time. GDP is often used as a key indicator of a country’s economic performance.

GDS: Global Distribution System

A computerized reservation system used by travel agencies and airlines to book travel and manage reservations.

GFE: Government Furnished Equipment

GFE: Government Furnished Equipment: GFE refers to equipment and property provided by the government to contractors for use in performing a contract.

GIS: Geographic Information System

A system that captures, stores, analyzes, and manages data with geographic locations. GIS is used in a variety of fields, including urban planning, natural resource management, and environmental science.

GMP: Good Manufacturing Practice

A set of guidelines and regulations that govern the manufacturing and processing of products, including food, drugs, and medical devices.

GoC: Government of Canada

The federal government of Canada, which is responsible for governing the country and providing services to its citizens.

GPS: Global Positioning System

A satellite-based navigation system that provides location and time information anywhere on or near the Earth. GPS is used in a variety of applications, including aviation, transportation, and surveying.

GPO: Group Purchasing Organization

An entity that combines the purchasing power of multiple businesses to negotiate better prices and terms with suppliers.

GPL: General Public License

A type of software license that allows users to freely use, modify, and distribute the software.

GRI: General Rules for Interpretation

A set of guidelines used to classify goods in international trade. The GRI is part of the Harmonized System (HS) and provides rules for determining the correct classification of goods.

GRN: Goods Received Note

A document used to confirm receipt of goods and the quantity and quality of the goods received.

GSC: Global Supply Chain

The interconnected network of businesses, suppliers, and customers involved in the production and distribution of goods and services on a global scale.

GSP: Generalized System of Preferences

A trade program that allows developing countries to export goods to developed countries at reduced or zero tariffs.

GST: Goods and Services Tax

A tax on the supply of most goods and services in Canada. The GST is a value-added tax, meaning that it is applied to the value added at each stage of production and distribution.

GTIM: Global Tariffs and International Mapping

A database that provides information on tariffs and trade agreements for countries around the world. The database is used by companies and governments to help navigate the complex landscape of international trade.

GTM: Global Trade Management

The processes and systems used by companies to manage their global trade operations. This includes activities such as compliance with import/export regulations, managing logistics and transportation, and minimizing risk.


HACCP: Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point

A systematic approach to identifying, evaluating, and controlling hazards in the food production process. HACCP is used to prevent foodborne illness and ensure food safety.

HAWB: House Air Waybill

A document used in air transportation that serves as a contract between the shipper and the airline. The HAWB includes information on the shipment, such as the origin, destination, and weight.

HazMat: Hazardous Materials

Substances that pose a risk to health, safety, or the environment. HazMat may include chemicals, gases, explosives, and other materials that require special handling and transportation.

HBL: House Bill of Lading

A document issued by a non-vessel operating common carrier (NVOCC) or freight forwarder indicating that they have received goods for shipment and detailing the terms of transportation.

HHT: Handheld Terminal

It is a portable device used for data collection and processing in logistics. It can be used for barcode scanning, inventory management, and tracking shipments.

HMI: Human-Machine Interface

A user interface that allows humans to interact with machines and equipment, such as warehouse management systems or automated material handling equipment.

HMRC: Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs

A non-ministerial department of the UK government responsible for collecting taxes, enforcing customs laws, and administering other regulatory regimes such as the national minimum wage.

HOS: Hours of Service

The regulations that limit the amount of time a commercial driver can be on duty and driving a commercial motor vehicle. The purpose of HOS regulations is to reduce the risk of accidents caused by driver fatigue.

HPT /HoPT: High Performance Teams or High-Performance Organizations

The management concepts used in supply chain and logistics. HPT emphasizes the importance of teamwork, communication, and continuous improvement to achieve highly effective and efficient teams. HoPT focuses on creating a culture of high performance throughout the entire organization, striving for excellence and success in the supply chain and logistics industry.

HS: Harmonized System/Harmonized Schedule

A standardized system of names and numbers used to classify traded products for customs purposes. The Harmonized System is used by most countries in the world for international trade.

HSC: Harmonized System Code

A standardized system of names and numbers used to classify traded products for customs and statistical purposes.

HSE: Health, Safety, and Environment

A set of standards and regulations designed to protect workers and the environment in the workplace.

HST: Harmonized Sales Tax

A value-added tax that is applied to most goods and services in Canada. The HST combines the federal Goods and Services Tax (GST) with provincial sales taxes.

HTH: Hand to Hold

A shipping service that requires the carrier to physically hand-deliver the shipment to the consignee, often with an extra charge.

HTS: Harmonized Tariff Schedule

A standardized system of names and numbers used to classify imported and exported products for customs purposes. The HTS is used by the United States for international trade.

HU: Handling Unit

HU: Handling Unit: It refers to a package or container used to store or transport goods in a supply chain. A Handling Unit can be a pallet, a box, or any other form of packaging.

HUB: Distribution Hub

A centralized location used for the storage, consolidation, and distribution of goods.

HVM: High-Value Materials

Refers to materials that have a high market value, such as precious metals or gemstones, and require special handling and security measures.

HVS: High-value Shipment

A shipment that contains items of high value, such as expensive jewelry or electronics. High-value shipments often require additional security measures and may be subject to additional fees or insurance requirements.


IATA: International Air Transport Association

A trade association of the world’s airlines, representing around 290 airlines and over 80% of air traffic.

IBP: Integrated Business Planning

A collaborative process that brings together cross-functional teams (such as sales, marketing, finance, and supply chain) to align strategic goals, identify risks and opportunities, and develop integrated plans that support the company’s overall objectives.

IC: Inventory Control

The process of managing and optimizing inventory levels, typically through the use of software tools that track inventory movement, demand forecasts, and supply chain data.

ICAO: International Civil Aviation Organization

A specialized agency of the United Nations that manages the administration and governance of international air transportation.

ICC: Interstate Commerce Commission

It was a regulatory agency in the United States that oversaw the transportation of goods and people between states, including railroads and trucks.

ICS: Import Control System

It is a system used by the European Union (EU) to monitor and control the import of goods into the EU.

I&D: Import and Export Documentation

The paperwork required for international trade, including customs declarations, bills of lading, packing lists, and other documents that accompany shipments across borders.

IEC: International Electrotechnical Commission

An organization that sets international standards for electrical and electronic devices and systems.

IFTA: International Fuel Tax Agreement

It is an agreement between the United States and Canada that simplifies fuel reporting and tax collection for interstate motor carriers operating in multiple jurisdictions.

IFTA: Israel Free Trade Agreement

It is a free trade agreement between the United States and Israel that eliminates tariffs on a wide range of products.

IID: Integrated Import Declaration

It is an electronic system used by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to manage the importation of goods into Canada.

ILS: Inventory Locator Service

A global database that provides access to parts and equipment for the aviation, marine, and defense industries.

IMDG: International Maritime Dangerous Goods

It is a set of regulations for the safe transportation of dangerous goods by sea, created by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

IMO: International Maritime Organization

It is a specialized agency of the United Nations that regulates shipping and maritime activities worldwide.

INT: Intermodal

The use of multiple modes of transportation, such as trains, trucks, and ships, to transport goods from one location to another.

Incoterms: International Commercial Terms

They are standardized terms used in international trade to define the obligations and responsibilities of buyers and sellers.

IoT: Internet of Things

A network of interconnected devices that communicate and exchange data, enabling improved supply chain visibility and efficiency.

iPaaS: Integration Platform as a Service

It is a cloud-based software platform that helps businesses integrate different applications and services with each other, allowing them to work together seamlessly.

IPS: Integrated Planning and Scheduling

A software solution that combines planning, scheduling, and execution functions in a single system, providing real-time visibility and control over production and logistics operations.

IPR: Intellectual Property Rights

Legal rights that protect a company’s proprietary technology, designs, or other intellectual property from unauthorized use or infringement by competitors or third parties.

IPR: In-Process Receiving

A logistics term used to describe the process of receiving goods while they are still in production or processing, allowing for faster turnaround times and reduced inventory costs.

ISBN: International Standard Book Number

It is a unique numeric identifier used to identify books and other publications, which helps ensure they are easily discoverable and accessible to readers around the world.

ISE: Intelligent Supply Chain Execution

A system that integrates data from across the supply chain to optimize operations and reduce costs.

ISF: Importer Security Filing

It is a requirement of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that importers submit certain information about their cargo before it is loaded on a vessel headed to the United States.

ISO: International Standards Organization

It is a non-governmental organization that develops and publishes international standards for products, services, and systems.

ISM Code: International Safety Management Code

A set of regulations for the safe operation of ships and pollution prevention.

ITA: International Trade Administration

An agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce that promotes U.S. exports, enforces trade laws, and strengthens the competitiveness of U.S. industries.

ITC: International Trade Commission

An independent federal agency in the United States that investigates and provides recommendations to the President and Congress on the effects of imports on U.S. industries.

ITMR: International Trade Management Revision

A set of standardized procedures and documentation used in international trade.

ITN: Internal Transaction Number

It is a unique number assigned by the U.S. Census Bureau to identify electronic export information filings.

IVD: In-Vehicle Delivery

A last-mile delivery solution that enables packages to be delivered directly to the trunk of a customer’s car, using digital key technology and secure authentication protocols.

IVR: Interactive Voice Response

It is a technology that allows callers to interact with a computerized system using voice commands or touch-tone key presses.

IVRS: Interactive Voice Response System

It is a system that uses IVR technology to interact with callers and provide automated responses.

IWM: Inventory Warehouse Management

A software system used to manage inventory levels, location, movement, and other aspects of warehouse operations, helping to optimize storage capacity, reduce waste, and improve order accuracy.


JCPOA: Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action

An agreement between Iran and six world powers (the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Russia, and China) aimed at limiting Iran’s nuclear program.

JDA: JDA Software

A software company that provides supply chain management solutions, including inventory optimization, transportation management, and demand planning.

JIT: Just in Time

A manufacturing philosophy and strategy that emphasizes the production of goods and delivery of materials just in time for their use in the manufacturing process.

JIT II: Just-In-Time Inventory

A strategy where suppliers hold inventory on behalf of their customers, so that the customers can receive goods just in time for production, without having to maintain large inventory levels themselves.

JITD: Just-In-Time Delivery

A strategy where suppliers deliver goods directly to the production line as they are needed, eliminating the need for customers to hold inventory.

JITP: Joint Industry Project

A collaborative effort between multiple companies aimed at developing new technologies or processes to improve supply chain efficiency.

JITM: Just-In-Time Manufacturing

A production strategy that emphasizes the synchronization of materials, labor, and equipment to produce goods only when they are needed.

JOC: Journal of Commerce:

A trade publication that covers the shipping, logistics, and transportation industries.



A lean manufacturing method for just-in-time production. In logistics, KANBAN is often used to manage inventory levels and control the flow of materials.

KC: Known Consignor

It is a status given to a shipper or consignor who has been approved by an aviation security authority and is allowed to secure their own air cargo without additional screening.

KIT: Keep in Touch

A communication protocol used in logistics and supply chain management to keep all parties involved in a shipment updated on its progress. KIT messages may include status updates, delivery notifications, and any other relevant information related to the shipment.

KLT: Knocked-Down, Loose Loaded, and Tare

A shipping method where products are disassembled and packed loosely in containers, allowing for more efficient use of space

KPI: Key Performance Indicator

A measurable value used to evaluate the success or effectiveness of an organization, project, or individual.

KPIR: Key Process Input Requirement

The specific requirements that must be met in order for a process to be successful. In logistics, KPIRs might include requirements such as regulatory compliance, safety standards, and environmental regulations.

KPIU: Key Process Input Uncertainty

The degree of uncertainty associated with a specific input factor. In logistics, KPIUs might include uncertainties such as the availability of raw materials or the reliability of transportation providers.

KPIV: Key Process Input Variables

These are the specific factors that influence the outcome of a process. In logistics, KPIVs might include factors such as weather, traffic, and carrier performance.

KPIW: Key Process Input Warning

This is a warning signal that indicates when a process is at risk of failing due to a specific input factor. In logistics, KPIWs might include warnings such as severe weather or unexpected delays.

KRL: Key Resource Leader

A person or team responsible for managing key resources within the supply chain, such as human resources, technology, and equipment. The KRL helps to ensure that these resources are optimized to support the overall goals of the supply chain.

KTS: Key Transportation Services

A provider of logistics and transportation services that specializes in key industries such as automotive, consumer goods, and retail. KTS provides end-to-end supply chain solutions, including transportation management, warehousing, and distribution.


L/C or LOC: Letter of Credit

A financial document used in international trade that guarantees payment to the seller from the buyer’s bank. The bank issues the letter of credit after assessing the buyer’s creditworthiness, and the seller can be assured of receiving payment once the terms of the agreement are met.

LCA : Life Cycle Assessment

A tool used to evaluate the environmental impact of a product or service throughout its entire life cycle, from raw material extraction to disposal.

LCL: Less-than-Container Load

A shipping option for goods that don’t require a full container. Multiple LCL shipments can be consolidated into a single container for more efficient shipping.

LDP: Logistics Development Program

A training program for employees interested in pursuing a career in logistics management.

LDP: Logistics Development Plan

A strategic plan that outlines the goals and objectives for improving logistics and supply chain operations in an organization. It may include initiatives such as process improvements, technology adoption, and talent development.

LESA: Logistics Emergency Supply Aid

A humanitarian initiative aimed at improving the logistics response to emergencies and disasters by pre-positioning critical supplies and equipment in strategic locations.

LIDAR: Light Detection and Ranging

A technology that uses lasers to map the environment and create 3D images. It is commonly used in logistics for autonomous vehicles, warehouse management, and inventory tracking.

LIFO: Last In, First Out

Last In, First Out is a method of inventory management that assumes the last items placed in inventory are the first sold or used.

LLP: Lead Logistics Provider

A third-party logistics provider (3PL) that takes primary responsibility for managing a company’s entire logistics operation.

LMS: Logistics Management System

A software tool used to manage and optimize logistics operations, including transportation, warehousing, and inventory management.

LOS: Logistics Optimization System

A software tool used to optimize and streamline logistics operations, including inventory management, transportation planning, and warehouse management.

LOS: Logistics Outsourcing

When a company hires a third-party logistics (3PL) provider to manage some or all of their supply chain operations, including transportation, warehousing, and distribution.

LPCO: Licenses, Permits, Certificates and Others

Refers to the various documentation requirements for importing and exporting goods, including licenses, permits, certificates of origin, and other necessary paperwork.

LRT: Light Rail Transit

A form of public transportation that uses light rail vehicles (LRVs) to transport passengers on tracks within urban or suburban areas.

LSP: Logistics Service Provider

A company that provides a range of logistics services to customers, such as transportation, warehousing, and freight forwarding.

LTL: Less-than-Truckload

A shipping option for goods that don’t require a full truckload. Multiple LTL shipments can be consolidated for more efficient shipping.

LTL: Last Mile Logistics

The final stage of delivery in which goods are transported from a distribution center or warehouse to their final destination. This is often the most complex and expensive part of the supply chain, as it requires navigating through congested urban areas and coordinating with multiple stakeholders.

LTL-OD: Less-than-Truckload Over-Dimension

A type of less-than-truckload (LTL) shipment that exceeds standard size and weight limits.

LVC: Logistics Visibility and Control

The ability to track and monitor shipments throughout the supply chain, providing real-time visibility and control over the movement of goods.

LVS: Low-value Shipment

Refers to shipments that are below a certain value threshold and may be subject to simplified customs procedures or exemptions.



A document that provides a detailed list of all the goods or products being shipped, including their quantities, descriptions, and other important information. The manifest is used to track shipments and ensure that all items are accounted for during transportation.

MASP: Multi-Annual Strategic Plan (Europe)

A plan developed by the European Union to guide its actions over a period of several years.

MAWB: Master Air Waybill

A document issued by an airline that serves as a contract of carriage between the shipper and the carrier.

MES: Manufacturing Execution System

A software system that manages and controls the production process on the factory floor. It can track real-time data on production activities, such as inventory levels, machine performance, and quality control.

MFCFR: Monetary and Financial Code France

A set of regulations governing monetary and financial transactions in France.

MHE: Material Handling Equipment

Refers to the machines and vehicles used to move goods within a warehouse or distribution center, such as forklifts, pallet jacks, and conveyors.

MID: Manufacturer Identification Code

A unique identifier assigned to a manufacturer by the US Customs and Border Protection agency.

MOQ: Minimum Order Quantity

The minimum amount of a product that a supplier is willing to sell to a customer in a single order. MOQs are often used to set pricing and to ensure that production runs are economically viable.

MOT: Modes of Transportation

Refers to the different methods of transportation available for shipping goods, such as air, sea, rail, and truck.

MOU: Memorandum of Understanding

A non-binding agreement between two or more parties outlining their intentions to work together towards a common goal.

MPF: Merchandise Processing Fee

A fee charged by US Customs and Border Protection for processing imports into the country.

MRM: Mobile Resource Management

The use of technology to track and manage mobile resources such as vehicles and personnel.

MRN: Movement Reference Number (EU)

A unique identifier assigned to goods being transported within the European Union.

MRP: Material Requirements Planning

A computerized system used to manage and plan the production of goods based on their materials requirements.

MRP II: Manufacturing Resource Planning

An integrated information system that helps manufacturers manage their resources and operations, including materials, labor, equipment, and schedules. MRP II is designed to improve efficiency and reduce costs in the manufacturing process.

MYCFT: Malaysia Countering Financing of Terrorism

A set of regulations and policies aimed at preventing the financing of terrorist activities in Malaysia.


NACCS: Nippon Automated Cargo and Port Consolidated System

A system used in Japan to manage and monitor the movement of cargo and other goods through ports and across the country.

NADR: New Advanced Distribution Requirement

A logistics strategy that involves using advanced technology, such as automation and robotics, to improve the efficiency and accuracy of distribution operations.

NAFTA: North American Free Trade Agreement

An agreement between Canada, the United States, and Mexico that eliminates most tariffs on goods traded between the three countries.

NAICS: North American Industry Classification System

A system used by businesses and governments to classify and measure economic activity in North America.

NCTS: New Computerized Transit System

A system used by the European Union to monitor the movement of goods between member states and facilitate the collection of import and export taxes.

NDA: Non-Disclosure Agreement

A legal contract between two or more parties that outlines confidential material or information that the parties wish to share with one another for certain purposes.

NDT: Non-Destructive Testing

A type of testing used to evaluate the condition and quality of materials and components without causing damage or altering their properties.

NHTSA: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

An agency of the U.S. federal government that is responsible for enforcing safety standards for motor vehicles and their parts.

NIFO: Next In, First Out

A method of inventory management that assumes the next items placed in inventory are the first sold or used.

NITL: National Industrial Transportation League

A trade association representing shippers and transportation providers in the United States.

NLR: No Load Received

A term used in the shipping industry to indicate that a shipment was not loaded onto a vessel as planned.

NMFC: National Motor Freight Classification

A standard system used by carriers and shippers in the U.S. to classify commodities for shipping and pricing purposes.

NMFS: National Marine Fisheries Service

An agency of the U.S. federal government that is responsible for managing and conserving the nation’s fisheries and protected marine species.

NMT: Normal Maintenance Time

The amount of time required to perform routine maintenance on equipment or machinery.

NNTL: Netherlands National Terrorism List

A list maintained by the Dutch government of individuals and organizations that are suspected of being involved in terrorist activities.

NORBL: Norwegian Black List

A list of individuals and organizations that are subject to sanctions by the Norwegian government.

NPT: Non-Productive Time

Refers to the time in which an employee is not directly engaged in productive activities, such as waiting for a shipment to arrive or resolving a problem with a supplier.

NRA: Negotiated Rate Arrangement

An agreement between a carrier and a shipper in which the carrier provides a discounted rate in exchange for a commitment from the shipper to use the carrier for a certain amount of freight.

NRP: Narcotics Rewards Program

A program run by the U.S. Department of State that offers rewards for information leading to the arrest and conviction of individuals involved in drug trafficking.

NSA: NVOCC Service Arrangement

An agreement between a Non-Vessel Operating Common Carrier (NVOCC) and a carrier that outlines the terms of the services that will be provided by the NVOCC.

NSC: National Safety Council

A non-profit organization dedicated to promoting safety and preventing injuries and deaths in workplaces, on roads, and in communities.

NSN: National Stock Number

A unique identifier assigned to each item that is procured, stocked, and issued through the federal supply system.

NTE: Not to Exceed

A term used in logistics contracts to set a maximum limit on the price of a product or service.

NVD: National Vehicle Distribution

A system for tracking and managing the distribution of vehicles from manufacturing plants to dealerships or customers.

NVO: Non-Vessel Operating

A type of freight forwarder that does not own or operate its own vessels but instead arranges for transportation services on behalf of shippers.

NVOCC: Non-Vessel Operating Common Carrier

A type of freight forwarder that does not own or operate its own vessels, but instead contracts with carriers to move cargo.

NWR: Not Written Report

A type of communication used in logistics and supply chain management that involves verbal agreements and understandings instead of written documentation.

NWSA: Northwest Seaport Alliance

A marine cargo operating partnership between the ports of Seattle and Tacoma in Washington State that manages the fourth-largest container gateway in North America.


OAC: Ocean Air Cargo

A type of shipping that combines both air and sea transportation.

OBL: Ocean Bill of Lading

A document used in ocean freight shipping that serves as a receipt of cargo, as well as a contract of carriage between the shipper and the carrier.

OCR: Optical Character Recognition

A technology that enables the computer to recognize printed or written text characters and convert them into digital form that can be manipulated by a computer.

OEE: Overall Equipment Effectiveness

A measure of manufacturing productivity that takes into account machine availability, performance, and quality.

OEM: Original Equipment Manufacturer

A company that manufactures parts or products that are used in another company’s product under that company’s brand name.

OFAC: Office of Foreign Assets Control

An agency of the U.S. Department of the Treasury that administers and enforces economic and trade sanctions against targeted foreign countries, organizations, and individuals.

OGA: Other Government Agency

A government agency other than Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that has regulatory authority over certain imported merchandise and requires specific documentation and clearance before the merchandise can be released from CBP custody.

OGL: Open General License

A type of export license that allows the export of certain items without the need for a specific license.

OMC: Office of Marine Conservation

An agency within the U.S. Department of State that is responsible for negotiating and implementing international agreements and programs related to marine conservation and fisheries management.

OMR: Order Management System

A software application that manages the entire order fulfillment process from order entry to shipping.

OMS: Order Management System

A software platform used by companies to manage and track orders, inventory, and fulfillment across multiple sales channels.

ORM: Other Regulated Material

A hazardous material that does not meet the criteria for any specific hazard class but requires special handling and documentation for transportation.

OSA: On-Shelf Availability

A measure of product availability on store shelves.

OSAKA: Order, Stock, and Availability Knowledge Assessment

A diagnostic tool used to evaluate the effectiveness of supply chain operations, particularly in the areas of inventory management and order fulfillment.

OS&D: Over, Short and Damaged

A term used in transportation and logistics to refer to shipments that are either over the expected quantity, short of the expected quantity, or damaged in transit.

OSM: Order Status Management

A process for tracking and managing order status updates.

OSR: Order Selection and Routing

A process used in warehouse management to optimize the picking and packing of orders for shipment.

OTD: On-Time Delivery

The percentage of orders that are delivered on or before the promised delivery date.

OTIF: On-Time-In-Full

A measure of delivery performance that evaluates whether orders are delivered on time and with the correct quantity and quality.

OTR: Order-to-Receipt

The time it takes from when an order is placed to when the goods are received.

OTR: Outbound Transportation Rate

The cost of shipping goods from the warehouse to the customer.

OTR: On-Time Rate

A measure of how often shipments are delivered on or before the promised delivery date, as a percentage of total shipments.


P2P: Procure-to-pay

Refers to the process of obtaining and paying for goods and services, typically within a business-to-business context.

PACT: Pre-Load Air Cargo Targeting

A US Customs and Border Protection program that utilizes advanced data analytics to identify high-risk air cargo shipments before they arrive in the US, allowing CBP to target their inspections and improve border security.


The platform that is used to transport goods, typically made of wood, plastic or metal.

PAPS: Pre-Arrival Processing System

A system used by the US Customs and Border Protection agency to expedite the clearance of commercial shipments into the US from Canada.

PARS: Pre-Arrival Review System (Canada)

A Canada Border Services Agency program that enables carriers to submit shipment data electronically to CBSA before the arrival of the shipment at the border, allowing for faster processing.

PCS: Port Community Systems (EU)

A digital platform that connects different actors within the port ecosystem, such as customs authorities, terminal operators, and freight forwarders, to exchange information and streamline processes.

P&D: Pick-up and delivery

Refers to the transportation of goods from one location to another, usually within a specific geographic area.

PDCA: Plan-Do-Check-Act

Refers to a continuous improvement framework that is used to improve processes and systems.

PDQ: Pretty Darn Quick

Refers to a term used in logistics to describe expedited shipping.

PEP: Politically Exposed Persons

Individuals who hold prominent public positions or have connections to high-ranking government officials and are therefore considered to be at higher risk for bribery, corruption, or money laundering.

PGA: Participating Government Agency

A US government agency that has a role in regulating certain goods or services, such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

PHAC: Public Health Agency of Canada

The federal agency responsible for promoting and protecting the health of Canadians through various programs and services related to disease prevention, health promotion, and emergency preparedness and response.

PLACI: Preloading Advance Cargo Information

A CBSA program that requires carriers to submit electronic cargo and conveyance data before arriving in Canada, to facilitate risk assessments and border clearance procedures.

PMS: Preventative Maintenance Schedule

Refers to a schedule of routine maintenance activities that are performed on equipment to prevent breakdowns and extend its lifespan.

PN: Prior Notice

Advance notification required by the FDA for all imported food shipments entering the US, to allow for inspection and ensure compliance with US regulations.

PO: Purchase Order

A commercial document issued by a buyer to a seller indicating types, quantities, and agreed prices for products or services to be purchased.

POD: Proof of Delivery

A document or electronic record that serves as evidence of delivery of goods or services from a supplier to a customer.

POE: Port of Entry

A location, such as a seaport, airport, or land border crossing, where goods or people enter a country for customs inspection and clearance.

POI: Point of Interest

Refers to a specific location that is of interest to a logistics or supply chain operation.

POM: Purchase Order Management

The process of managing purchase orders from creation to delivery, including supplier selection, order placement, monitoring, and payment.

POP: Point of Purchase

The location or moment in a retail environment where a customer makes a purchase decision and completes a transaction.

POS: Point of Sale

The location, such as a cash register or checkout counter, where a customer completes a purchase transaction and pays for goods or services.

PPD: Prepaid

Payment terms in which the buyer has already paid for the goods or services before they are delivered or provided.

PRECISE: Preloading consignment information for secure entry

An EU program that requires advance submission of cargo and conveyance data before arrival at the EU border, to improve security and facilitate risk assessments.

PSA: Port of Singapore Authority

Refers to the government agency that is responsible for the management and regulation of Singapore’s port operations.

PST: Provincial Sales Tax (Canada)

A tax collected by Canadian provinces on the sale or use of goods and services, in addition to the federal goods and services tax (GST).

PTI: Produce Traceability Initiative

Refers to a program that is aimed at improving traceability in the fresh produce supply chain.

PUDO: Pick-up and Drop-off

Refers to a logistics model that involves the use of local collection and delivery points for goods.

PVR: Purchase Volume Rebate

Refers to a rebate that is offered by a supplier to a customer based on the volume of goods that are purchased.

PWS: Performance Work Statement

Refers to a document that outlines the performance requirements for a specific task or project.


QA: Quality Assurance

A process of ensuring that products or services meet or exceed customer expectations and comply with relevant quality standards or regulations.

QAD: Quick Action Dispatch:

A system used to quickly and efficiently dispatch goods or services to customers, typically used in emergency or urgent situations.

QBR: Quarterly Business Review

A meeting between a supplier and customer to review performance, discuss challenges and opportunities, and plan for the future.

QC: Quality Control

A process of verifying that products or services meet or exceed specific quality criteria or standards, through testing, inspection, or other methods.

QCD: Quality, Cost, Delivery

A set of key performance indicators used to measure the effectiveness of a manufacturing or supply chain process, based on its ability to deliver high-quality products on time and at a reasonable cost.

QFD: Quality Function Deployment

A process used to translate customer needs into product or service requirements, and to ensure that those requirements are met throughout the supply chain.

QM: Quality Management

A comprehensive approach to managing quality throughout an organization, including planning, control, assurance, and improvement.

QMS: Quality Management System

A set of policies, processes, and procedures used to ensure that an organization delivers products or services that meet or exceed customer requirements and comply with applicable regulations.

QoE: Quality of Experience

A measure of the overall satisfaction of a customer with a product or service, based on factors such as usability, reliability, and customer support.

QoS: Quality of Service

The level of performance and reliability provided by a service provider, such as a transportation or logistics company.

QPL: Qualified Parts List

A list of approved suppliers and their products that meet specific requirements, typically used in government contracting.

QR Code: Quick Response Code

A two-dimensional barcode that can be scanned with a smartphone or other mobile device to quickly access information about a product or service.

QSP: Quality Service Provider

A provider of logistics and supply chain services that focuses on providing high-quality services to its customers.


RA: Regulated Agent

A person or entity authorized by the relevant authorities to screen cargo, mail or passengers before they are loaded on an aircraft.

RAC: Regulatory Affairs Committee

A committee responsible for ensuring that companies comply with laws and regulations related to their products and services.

RAR: Recovery Audit Report

A report that identifies and recovers overpayments made by a company to suppliers or vendors.

RAS: Remote Asset Sensing

A technology used to track and monitor assets in real-time from a remote location, such as through GPS or RFID.

RAS: Route Accounting System

This system helps companies manage their direct store delivery (DSD) operations by providing real-time visibility into inventory levels, sales transactions, and delivery schedules.

RBM: Risk-Based Monitoring

A monitoring approach that focuses on high-risk areas of a supply chain to detect potential issues and mitigate them.

RBM: Reorder Buffer Management

A technique used in inventory management to maintain optimal stock levels by calculating the buffer stock needed to meet customer demand and minimize stockouts.

RCL: Rolled Consolidation List

A list that identifies shipments that have been consolidated for transportation purposes, typically by a freight forwarder.

RCCP: Rough-Cut Capacity Planning

A high-level capacity planning technique that estimates the production capacity required to meet future demand based on a rough-cut analysis of resource availability.

RCS: Returnable Container System

A system that uses reusable containers or packaging to reduce waste and improve supply chain efficiency.

RDC: Regional Distribution Center

A facility used by companies to store and distribute products to customers in a specific geographic region. RDCs are often used to consolidate shipments from multiple suppliers and reduce transportation costs.

RFI: Request for Information

A formal request to obtain specific information from suppliers or vendors.

RFID: Radio Frequency Identification

A technology that uses radio waves to identify and track objects.

RFP: Request for Proposal:

A formal document used to solicit proposals from potential suppliers or vendors.

RFQ: Request for Quotation

A formal document used to request quotes from potential suppliers or vendors.

RLF: Remote Location Filing

A process that allows for the electronic filing of entries at locations other than the port of arrival.

RMA: Return Merchandise Authorization

An authorization that allows customers to return products to a supplier or vendor for replacement or refund.

RMD: Release on Minimum Documentation

A process that allows for the release of goods from customs custody with minimal documentation.

RNS: Release Notification System

A system used to notify carriers or other parties of the release of goods from customs custody.

RODS: Records of Duty Status

A record of a commercial driver’s hours of service.

ROI: Return on Investment

A performance metric used to evaluate the profitability of an investment.

ROO: Rules of Origin

Regulations that determine the country of origin for a product and the associated tariff rates.

ROP: Reorder Point

A level of inventory that triggers a reorder of products. The ROP is calculated based on the lead time to receive new inventory, the average daily demand, and the safety stock required to prevent stockouts.

RO/RO: Roll-On/Roll-Off

A method of cargo transportation in which vehicles or equipment are driven onto a ship or other carrier and secured for transport.

RTV: Return to Vendor

A process in which defective or unwanted products are returned to the supplier or vendor for replacement or refund.

RTO: Return to Origin

A process in which products are returned to their original location or supplier due to issues such as defects, overstocking, or incorrect shipments.

RTR: Ready to Run

A manufacturing process in which products are assembled and tested before being shipped to customers, reducing lead times and improving quality control.

RTV: Return to Vendor

A process used to return unsold or defective products to the original supplier. RTV can help companies reduce inventory costs and minimize the risk of stockouts.

RWS: Road Weather System

A system that provides real-time weather information to truck drivers and other transportation stakeholders to improve safety and efficiency on the road.

RWD: Reverse Warehouse Distribution

A process used to manage returns and refurbish or recycle products. RWD can help companies reduce waste and improve sustainability by repurposing or recycling products instead of disposing of them.

RWM: Reverse Warehouse Management

The process of managing returns and other reverse logistics activities, including product repair, refurbishment, and recycling. RWM can help companies reduce costs and improve customer satisfaction by efficiently managing the returns process.


S&OE: Sales and Operations Execution

A process that focuses on short-term planning and execution of production and inventory plans to meet customer demand.

S&OP: Sales and Operations Planning

A process that brings together sales, marketing, and operations teams to create a demand plan and production plan that align with each other.

SaaS: Software as a Service

A software delivery model in which software applications are provided over the internet by a third-party provider. Users can access the software through a web browser or an API without the need for local installation.

SCA: Supply Chain Analytics

The process of using data to identify opportunities for improvement in supply chain management and logistics.

SCAC: Standard Carrier Alpha Code

A unique code assigned by the National Motor Freight Traffic Association (NMFTA) to identify transportation companies, such as trucking companies, rail carriers, and ocean carriers.

SCADA: Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition

A system used to monitor and control industrial processes and equipment, such as in a warehouse or manufacturing plant.

SCE: Supply Chain Execution

Refers to the coordination and management of all activities involved in the delivery of a product or service from the supplier to the customer, including transportation, warehousing, inventory management, and order fulfillment.

SCEM: Supply Chain Event Management

The process of monitoring supply chain events in real-time and responding to them in an efficient manner to minimize disruption.

SCM: Supply Chain Management

The coordination and management of all activities involved in the delivery of a product or service from the supplier to the customer, including procurement, production, transportation, warehousing, inventory management, and order fulfillment.

SCMaaS: Supply Chain Management as a Service

A cloud-based service that provides supply chain management solutions to businesses.

SCO: Supply Chain Operations

The day-to-day activities involved in managing the supply chain, such as procurement, production, and distribution.

SCS: Supply Chain Strategy

The overall plan for how a company will manage its supply chain to achieve its business goals.

SCV: Supply Chain Visibility

The ability to see and track inventory, orders, and shipments as they move through the supply chain.

SDS: Safety Data Sheet

A document containing information on the potential hazards and safe handling of chemicals used in the supply chain.

SEA: Shipper’s Export Declaration

A document required by the US government for all exports above a certain value, which provides information about the shipment and its contents.

SED: Shipper’s Export Declaration

A document required by the U.S. government for all exports valued over $2,500, which provides information on the commodity being shipped, the exporter, and the consignee.

SEM: Strategic Enterprise Management

A set of tools and methodologies used by organizations to align their business strategies with their operational processes, performance metrics, and risk management practices.

SEP: Supplier Evaluation Program

A system for evaluating the performance of suppliers based on factors such as quality, delivery time, and cost.

SFP: Seller Fulfilled Prime

It is a program offered by Amazon to allow sellers to offer products as Prime-eligible without using Amazon’s fulfillment centers.

SIC: Standard Industrial Classification

A system used to classify businesses by the type of economic activity they engage in.

SIMP: Seafood Import Monitoring Program

A U.S. government program that requires seafood importers to provide additional data and documentation to prevent illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing practices.

SKU: Stock Keeping Unit

A unique identifier assigned to a product for inventory management and tracking purposes.

SLA: Service Level Agreement

A contract between a service provider and a customer that defines the level of service that will be provided, including performance metrics, availability, and support.

SLI: Shipper’s Letter of Instruction

A document that provides instructions from the shipper to the freight forwarder or carrier, including information on the cargo, routing, and special handling requirements.

SLP: Sales and Logistics Planning

A process that combines sales forecasting with logistics planning to optimize the supply chain and improve customer satisfaction.

SME: Small and Medium Enterprises

Businesses that have a limited number of employees and/or revenue, typically defined as having fewer than 500 employees.

SOA: Statement of Account

A summary of a customer’s account, including all transactions and account balances, provided by a supplier or vendor.

SOLAS: Safety of Life at Sea

An international treaty that sets minimum safety standards for ships, including requirements for construction, equipment, and operation.

SOP: Standard Operating Procedure

A set of step-by-step instructions that outlines how a particular task or process should be performed, including any required resources, personnel, and timelines.

SOW: Statement of Work

A detailed document that outlines the scope, objectives, deliverables, and timelines for a project or contract.

SOX: Sarbanes-Oxley Act

A U.S. federal law that establishes standards for public companies and accounting firms to improve the accuracy and transparency of financial reporting.

SPC: Statistical Process Control

A methodology used to monitor and control a process by measuring and analyzing data.

SPI: Special Program Indicator

A code used in international trade to indicate that a shipment is subject to special handling or regulatory requirements.

SPL: Sanctioned Party List

A list maintained by governments and international organizations of individuals, organizations, and countries subject to economic or trade sanctions.

SRM: Supplier Relationship Management

The process of managing and optimizing the interactions between a company and its suppliers to improve performance, reduce costs, and mitigate risks.

SRP: Shelf-Ready Packaging

A type of packaging designed to be easily placed on store shelves for retail display.

SRT: Shipment Release Time:

The time at which a shipment is released by the carrier for delivery to the customer.

SSA: Supply Chain Security Assessment

An evaluation of the security risks and vulnerabilities in a supply chain.

SSL: Secure Sockets Layer

A protocol used to secure online transactions and data transfers.

SSCC: Serial Shipping Container Code

A unique identifier assigned to a shipping container or transport unit for tracking and inventory management purposes.

SSE: Shanghai Shipping Exchange

A platform for maritime freight rate pricing and information exchange.

STB: Single Transaction Bonds

A type of customs bond that allows importers to bring in goods on a transaction-by-transaction basis instead of posting a continuous bond.

SWI: Single Window Initiative

A program that aims to simplify and streamline the process of submitting import/export documentation by allowing companies to submit all required information through a single electronic platform.


TAT: Turnaround Time

The time it takes for a shipment or order to be processed and delivered from the time it was received.

TATP: Transit Authority Transfer Point

A designated location where shipments are transferred between different transportation modes, such as from truck to train or from train to ship.

T’s & C’s: Terms and Conditions

Refers to the agreement or contract between two or more parties, detailing the terms of a transaction or service.

TCCU: Technical Commercial Client Unit

A division within a company that provides technical support and services to commercial clients.

TDC: Transportation Distribution Center

A facility used for the storage, sorting, and distribution of goods.

TDP: Transportation Data Plan

A plan that outlines how data is collected, managed, and used for transportation-related purposes.

TEU: Twenty-Foot Equivalent Unit

A standard measure used to describe a shipping container’s cargo carrying capacity. One TEU is equal to a container that is 20 feet long, 8 feet wide, and 8 feet, 6 inches high.

TFTEA: Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act

A U.S. law that seeks to modernize and streamline customs procedures, enhance enforcement of trade laws, and promote economic growth.

TIB: Temporary Importation under Bond

A customs procedure that allows goods to enter a country temporarily, without paying duties or taxes, on the condition that they are re-exported by a specified time.

TIR: Transit International Routier

A customs transit system used to facilitate the movement of goods across international borders.

TL: Truckload

A shipment that requires the use of an entire trailer or truck, as opposed to LTL (less-than-truckload) shipments, which combine multiple smaller shipments from different customers into one trailer or truck.

TLP: Transportation Lane Planning

The process of planning and optimizing transportation routes to minimize costs and improve efficiency.

TM: Transportation Management

The process of planning, coordinating, and executing the movement of goods and materials from one location to another.

TMS: Transportation Management System

A software platform that helps companies manage and optimize their transportation operations, including carrier selection, routing, and tracking.

TMSA: Transportation Management System Assessment

A framework for assessing the effectiveness and maturity of a transportation management system.

TMSI: Transportation Management System Integration

The process of integrating different transportation management systems into a unified platform.

TMSR: Transportation Management System Reporting

The process of generating reports and analyzing data from a transportation management system.

TOFC: Trailer on Flat Car

A type of intermodal transportation in which truck trailers are transported on rail flatcars.

TQM: Total Quality Management

A management philosophy focused on continuous improvement of product and service quality by involving every employee in the organization.

TRCAN: Transport Canada

The Canadian government department responsible for transportation policies and programs, including aviation, marine, rail, and road transportation.

TL: Turkey’s Most Wanted Terrorist List

TRWA list maintained by the Turkish government of individuals wanted for terrorism-related crimes.

TSA: Transportation Security Administration

A U.S. government agency responsible for security in all modes of transportation, including airports, seaports, and railroads.

TSCA: Toxic Substances Control Act

A U.S. law that regulates the manufacture, importation, and use of chemicals and chemical substances.

TSO: Transportation Security Officer

An officer responsible for ensuring the security of transportation systems, such as airports, seaports, and train stations.

TSP: Transportation Service Provider

A company that provides transportation services, such as shipping, trucking, or freight forwarding.

T-TIP: Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

A proposed free trade agreement between the European Union and the United States, intended to reduce trade barriers and increase economic growth.

TTB: Tax and Trade Bureau

A U.S. government agency responsible for regulating and collecting taxes on alcohol, tobacco, firearms, and ammunition.


UAV: Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

A remote-controlled aircraft used for various applications, including surveillance, search and rescue, and cargo delivery.

UCC: Uniform Commercial Code

A set of legal rules governing commercial transactions in the United States.

UCC: Union Customs Code

A set of customs rules governing the movement of goods within the European Union.

UCC 128: Uniform Code Council 128

A standard barcode used in supply chain management to track and identify products and shipments.

UCR: Unique Consignment Reference

A unique identifier used to track shipments in the United Kingdom.

UFC: Uniform Freight Classification

A system of classification used by railroads to determine shipping rates based on the type of goods being shipped.

UKPTG: United Kingdom Proscribed Terrorist Groups

A list of terrorist organizations banned in the United Kingdom.

ULCC: Ultra Large Crude Carrier

A type of oil tanker designed to transport large quantities of crude oil.

ULD: Unit Load Device

A container or pallet used to carry cargo or baggage on airplanes. ULDs are standardized and interchangeable between aircraft, making them an important part of air cargo logistics.

ULD Net: Unit Load Device Net

A system used to secure ULDs to cargo aircraft to prevent them from shifting during flight.

ULD Tag: Unit Load Device Tag

A label affixed to ULDs to identify their contents and destination, and to track their movement through the supply chain.

ULLS: Unit Level Logistics System

A computerized inventory management system used by the U.S. Army to track spare parts and other supplies at the unit level.

UMS: Unmanned Maritime System

An autonomous or remote-controlled vessel used for various tasks, including search and rescue, surveying, and cargo transportation.

UNCTAD: United Nations Conference on Trade and Development

A permanent intergovernmental body established by the United Nations General Assembly to promote economic development and international trade.

URS: Universal Routing System

A system used in transportation management to optimize routing and scheduling for deliveries.

UNSC: United Nations Security Council

A body responsible for maintaining international peace and security.

UPC: Universal Product Code

A barcode symbology used for tracking trade items in stores.

UPS: United Parcel Service

A package delivery company.

USDA: U.S. Department of Agriculture

A federal agency responsible for overseeing agriculture and farming.

USPS: United States Post Office

A postal service and package delivery company in the United States.

UTP – Universal Tractor Program

A program used by the U.S. Department of Defense to standardize and modernize its fleet of tractors used for material handling.


VAN: Value-Added Network

A third-party provider of communication services between businesses.

VAS: Value Added Services

Additional services provided by a logistics provider that go beyond the basic transportation of goods. Examples include labeling, kitting, and assembly.

VAS: Vehicle Allocation System

A software system that helps optimize the allocation of vehicles to transportation routes. This can help reduce transportation costs and improve delivery times.

VAR: Value-Added Reseller is a company that adds value to a product before reselling it.

VAT: Value-Added Tax

A consumption tax added to the price of goods and services in many countries.

VGM: Verified Gross Mass

The weight of a shipping container including its contents, verified by the shipper.

VLT: Value-Added Lead Time

The amount of time it takes to deliver a product or service, including any value-added activities such as customization or assembly. VLT is an important metric in supply chain management, as it can impact customer satisfaction and inventory levels.

VM: Virtual Machine

A software environment that emulates a physical computer.

VMI: Vendor Managed Inventory

A supply chain management system where the vendor of a product is responsible for monitoring and replenishing inventory levels for their customer.

VOC: Voice of the Customer

The feedback provided by customers about their experience with a product or service. In supply chain and logistics, VOC can help identify areas for improvement and guide decision-making.

VOCC: Vessel Operating Common Carrier

Refers to a shipping company that operates its own vessels. These companies offer services to shippers for moving cargo from one port to another.

VOP: Voice of the Process

The feedback provided by employees about the efficiency and effectiveness of a process. In supply chain and logistics, VOP can help identify bottlenecks and areas for improvement.

VPN: Virtual Private Network

A technology that enables secure communication between remote networks over the internet.

VSC: Vehicle Safety Check

A pre-trip inspection of a vehicle to ensure that it is safe for operation. VSC is a critical aspect of transportation safety.


W/H: Warehouse

A facility used to store goods, materials, or products.

WCO: World Customs Organization

An intergovernmental organization that promotes international customs cooperation.

WCO Harmonized System: World Customs Organization Harmonized System

A standardized system for classifying goods for customs purposes, used by over 200 countries around the world.

WCS: Warehouse Control System

A software system that manages and controls the automated equipment and machinery within a warehouse or distribution center, including conveyor systems, sortation systems, and automated storage and retrieval systems. The WCS communicates with the WES to optimize and coordinate the movement of goods throughout the warehouse.

W&D: Warehousing and Distribution

Refers to the activities involved in storing and moving goods within a supply chain.

WDN: Warehouse Delivery Note

A document that lists the contents of a shipment that has been received at a warehouse.

WERC: Warehousing Education and Research Council

A professional organization that provides education, research, and networking opportunities for warehouse and distribution professionals.

WES: Warehouse Execution System

A software system that controls and optimizes warehouse operations such as order picking, inventory management, and transportation.

WIBON: When it’s best on net

A shipping term that indicates the best time for a shipment to be delivered based on the carrier’s schedule and the recipient’s availability.

WIP: Work in Progress

Refers to goods that are in the process of being manufactured but are not yet finished products.

WIPER: Weekly Inventory Position Evaluation Report

A report used to evaluate inventory levels on a weekly basis.

WIPR: Work in Process Report

A document that tracks the status of work orders, materials, and labor in a manufacturing process.

WLTP: Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicles Test Procedure

A standardized testing procedure used to measure vehicle emissions and fuel consumption.

WM: Warehouse Management

The process of optimizing warehouse operations and inventory management.

WO: Work Order

A document that specifies the work to be done, materials needed, and other important information for a particular job or project.

WPD: Warehouse Productivity Dashboard

A tool that provides real-time visibility into warehouse performance metrics, such as throughput, capacity utilization, and inventory accuracy.

WPT: Wooden Pallets and Containers

Refers to the wooden pallets and containers used to transport goods and products.

WSC: World Shipping Council

An organization that represents the global liner shipping industry and promotes its interests.

WSP: Warehouse Service Provider

A company that provides warehousing and distribution services to other businesses.

WMA: Weighted Moving Average

A forecasting method that assigns weights to past data points to predict future demand.

WMSA: Warehouse Management System Association

A trade organization that promotes the use of warehouse management systems and provides resources for companies to improve their warehouse operations.

WMS: Warehouse Management System

A software application that helps manage warehouse operations and inventory.

WTA: Warehouse Transfer Authorization

A document authorizing the transfer of inventory from one warehouse location to another.

WTO: World Trade Organization

An intergovernmental organization that regulates international trade and resolves trade disputes.

WTS: Warehouse Transportation System

A system used to manage the transportation of goods to and from a warehouse.


XML: eXtensible Markup Language

A markup language used for encoding documents in a format that is both human-readable and machine-readable.


YB: Yard Boss

The supervisor or manager responsible for overseeing operations in a yard or storage area.

YC: Yard Clerk

An administrative support role responsible for tracking and managing inventory movements within a yard or storage area.

YM: Yard Management

The process of managing the movement of trailers and containers within a yard or terminal.

YMS: Yard Management System

A software system that manages the movement of trailers and containers in and out of a distribution center or warehouse yard.

YRD: Yard

A designated area for loading and unloading of trucks, trailers, and containers.

YRDLOC: Yard Location

A code or identifier used to track the location of a specific item within a yard or storage area.

YTD: Year-to-Date

A metric that shows the performance of a company or organization from the beginning of the year to the present day.

YTDG: Year-to-Date Growth

A measure of how much a particular metric, such as sales or revenue, has grown since the beginning of the year.

YTD-PTD: Year-to-Date Prior-to-Date

A comparison of current year-to-date data with the same period in the previous year. YTD-PTD can help identify trends and measure progress over time.


A bar or beam that connects two draft animals for pulling a load. In modern logistics, yokes may refer to load bars or crossbars that secure cargo on trailers.

Thank You Contributors!

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to everyone in the community who participated in our LinkedIn challenge to share their favorite acronyms related to the supply chain and logistics industry. Your contributions were invaluable and we appreciate your support. This blog is dedicated to all the wonderful contributors who made this possible through their collaboration and engagement. Thank you! (Here’s a link to the original post)

Want to keep the ultimate guide to supply chain and logistics acronyms handy?

Are we missing an acronym on the list? Tell us!

Harshida Acharya

Partner & CMO


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