Published 2 Nov 2023
What is a Logistics Audit Checklist?
A logistics audit checklist is a document that lists the things, actions, or procedures that a company must regularly evaluate for an effective and efficient logistics operation. It helps auditors maintain a record of the necessary data and have a comprehensive overview of the processes to easily identify areas for improvement. Logistics audit checklists are typically customizable to meet a business’s specific needs.
In this article
- Importance of Logistics Audits
- What is a Transport Audit?
- Scope of Transport and Logistics Audits
- What to Include in a Transport and Logistics Audit Checklists
- FAQs about Transport and Logistics Checklists
- Conduct Efficient Transport and Logistics Audits with SafetyCulture
- Related Transport and Logistics Audit Templates
Importance of Logistics Audits
The main purpose of logistics audits in organizations is to assess the organization’s operational efficiency. Logistics audits are great opportunities for organizations to spot and correct weak points in the supply chain such as the following:
- Order of operations
- Bottlenecks in processes
- Issues in item receiving and dispatching
They empower everyone in the organization because they provide knowledge and insight into the organization’s performance. By analyzing the information collected from these audits, members gain a better understanding of how a team or a department is contributing to or hindering the organization’s success.
Logistics audits also ensure all proper processes are being followed. As each organization has different logistics practices to work with based on their budget, capabilities, and goals, conducting regular logistics audits can help you better inspect if your organization is working sustainably and realistically with what you have, thus driving in more profit and productivity. Subsequently, logistics audits also help ensure quality is maintained and achieved in all processes and products.
What is a Transport Audit?
Logistics audits are used for many business processes, but they are often associated with the transportation of goods and the transportation industry as a whole. This is because the transport industry has multiple logistical needs to consider for a successful trip, delivery, and the like.
While a transport audit can be part of a logistics audit, a transport audit focuses more on the individual vehicles within a fleet. A logistics audit is aimed at the organization’s overall management of goods, while a transport audit is aimed specifically at the organization’s fleet management. As such, a transport audit is primarily focused on vehicle inspections. A transport audit helps in:
- capturing vehicle defects and damage before service;
- early detection of issues to reduce repair costs; and
- ensuring deliveries are quick and accident-free
Transport audits help build a roadworthy and efficient fleet by encouraging drivers to take responsibility for their vehicles. Conducting transport audits frequently trains drivers to immediately identify issues and take steps to resolve them. Transport audits also help fleet managers enforce compliance with safety standards and improve operational efficiency by uncovering common weaknesses.
Scope of Transport and Logistics Audits
Following the description of a transport audit and a logistics audit, a transport and logistics audit is an in-depth evaluation of a company’s transportation, warehousing, and supply chain operations. It encompasses a thorough assessment of every facet of these operations, from the moment goods leave a supplier’s facility to the point they reach the hands of the customer. The primary aim of such an audit is to identify areas where improvement is necessary, where costs can be reduced, and where performance can be enhanced.
The scope of a transport and logistics audit depends on the supply chain’s structure and complexity. While it may differ for each organization, it will most likely include a fleet inspection and a warehouse inspection. Since mobility is a key component of a logistics business, fleet inspections are critical to reducing vehicle downtime. Warehouse inspections are also important because improper storage can result in damaged goods.
However, a transport and logistics audit can be conducted together, depending on your organization’s needs and processes. For this, considering having a dedicated checklist for your transport and logistics needs.
What to Include in a Transport and Logistics Audit Checklists
A typical transport and logistics checklist would ideally have fields for the following:
- Vehicle information such as:
- Vehicle type
- License plate number
- Current mileage before or after use
- Presence and status of insurance for both personnel and vehicle
- Status of the following:
- Vehicle breaks
- Steering systems
- Windshields and wipers
- Fuel systems
- Lighting devices
- Exhaust systems
- Cargo to be transported
- Procedures to follow for transportation of goods
- Logistical procedures during the trip that can cause risk, if any
Here is a sample transport and logistics checklist in use for reference:
FAQs about Transport and Logistics Checklists
The most common vehicles used in transportation and logistics are trucks, ships, trains, and planes. Thus, these vehicles are the most commonly audited and inspected. However, other modes of transportation are also audited and considered in logistic planning, depending on the organization.
Typically, there is a dedicated logistics manager who will be responsible for all logistics activities, sometimes including transport concerns. In other cases, transport and logistics checklists can be managed by operations managers and transportation planners and managers.
Some ways you can effectively perform audits on your transport and logistics include the following:
- Empowering all workers on-site to report issues by providing them the necessary forms and checklists
- Centralizing all documents in one place for easy access
- Training workers on proper auditing procedures
All these can be done with a digital solution, particularly with one that has mobile capabilities and real-time syncing.
Conduct Efficient Transport and Logistics Audits with SafetyCulture
Auditing your transport and logistics can be a tiresome task, as there are many moving parts to consider such as the processes of receiving and dispatching, the vehicles to be used for transport, and the operations involved. To ease the burden of auditing manually, consider using a digital solution such as SafetyCulture (formerly iAuditor) to help you streamline processes.
As a mobile-ready digital operations platform, SafetyCulture helps ensure the safety of your workflows, improve efficiency, mitigate risks, and prevent the loss of life and property with customizable checklists. To get started, you can use premade transport and logistics form templates from the Public Library and edit them as you see fit. You can also choose to create your own checklists from scratch, or convert your existing checklists for SafetyCulture use. All files will then be stored in the cloud with customizable access controls in each, ensuring data integrity and privacy anytime and anywhere.
The checklists can then be used to inspect the status of your vehicles, goods, and workers, as well as their safety. You can also conduct warehouse inspections, pre-trip inspections, vehicle maintenance, and manage incident reports, all in one place. Capture photo evidence and attach them to your forms to better explain issues, and keep track of them with Analytics.
Additionally, with SafetyCulture, you can also do the following:
- Flag urgent issues and instantly assign corrective tasks to team members with collaborative actions
- Raise a Heads Up to communicate with your workers from different sites and warehouse
- Monitor your vehicles, goods, and other assets while in use
- Train employees with interactive courses on proper safety procedures, transport practices, and logistics
- Generate analytical reports and completed transport and logistics audits, then export them in PDF, Word, Excel, or Weblink formats for easy sharing
Related Transport and Logistics Audit Templates
You can use this customizable vehicle inspection template for pre trip inspections or for identifying vehicle defects and mechanical issues. Inspect the brake system, coupling devices, engine operation, exhaust system, and other critical vehicle components. Provide your observations and recommendations and rate the vehicle’s overall condition with “Excellent, Good, Average, Poor, or High Risk.” With SafetyCulture, you can assign tasks for immediate action and take photo evidence of any issues found.
Use this Vehicle Accident Report to gather all important information surrounding a vehicular accident. Take photos and enter other details including date of the accident, date and time of investigation, and geo tag the exact location of the accident. Enter details about the people involved or injured in the accident and record witness statements. Draw diagrams in case of collisions for added detail. Capture photo evidence of injuries and record the exact location of the accident being reported. Monitor trends with Analytics and analyze data collected to mitigate risks of accidents.
Conduct your driver assessments with this template to help recognize best practice behaviors and identify bad driving practices. Enter basic information about the driver and observe if pre-start checks are done correctly. Rate the driver’s engine management, driving technique, and professionalism. Complete the assessment with your final rating of the driver. SafetyCulture can work offline and generate reports anytime anywhere using a tablet, iPad, or mobile device.
A driver log sheet template is a tool used by heavy vehicle or truck drivers to provide accurate information for their fleet manager's proper recordkeeping. This template is built according to the guidelines of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) under the U.S. Department of Transportation (DoT).
Use this driver log template to input basic details such as the name of the carrier, main office address, home terminal address, your name, employee number, and date. Next, log your off duty, sleeper berth, driving and on duty (not driving) start time, end time, where changes occurred, and total hours. Finally, send the driver log sheet with these key information, including photos of the truck’s license plate, total mileage, receipts, tickets, and your signature.
You can use this template when conducting drug and alcohol testing for your drivers. Record the driver’s consent via electronic signature, select which drug/drug class is going to be tested, and document the alcohol and drug testing results. Set the permission settings of SafetyCulture to limit users who can generate and submit reports. Take advantage of unlimited cloud storage when you upgrade to a premium subscription.
This Warehouse Safety Checklist can help identify possible risks present during warehouse operations. Evaluate the warehouse’s location, exterior and interior dock areas, equipment, and sanitation. This template also covers training programs and the implementation of emergency and safety procedures. Inspectors can provide recommendations and assign actions to mitigate risks in the warehouse premises.
This logistics audit checklist is converted by Schneider Electric using SafetyCulture. Schneider Electric is a multinational corporation specializing in electrical equipment. This logistics template has been created to assess the control points based on observation. It is used to identify if employees are following logistics best practices.
You can use this checklist to inspect the condition of each vehicle in your fleet or company vehicles. Enter the vehicle’s and driver’s details and record observations on the exterior, engine compartment, and interior area of the vehicle. You can take photos with this template and generate your reports anytime anywhere.
You can use this template to report injuries, accidents, or incidents. Take photos as evidences and include all important details surrounding the event. Include your analysis of the incident and cite possible contributing factors that may have led to the incident. Lastly, rate the possibility of recurrence. Monitor trends with Analytics and help mitigate recurrence of accidents.
The transportation industry can use this pre-existing template to perform preventative maintenance on their vehicles. Aside from the primary information per audit, this checklist reviews vehicle parts and their status including lights, tires, steering, and vehicle fluid such as antifreeze, coolant, and oil. It also helps ensure that the battery, air filters, wipers, and spark plugs are in good working condition.