Glossary of Terms

for Third Party Logistics, Supply Chain Management & Fulfillment Operations

Many of the terms used in the world of third-party logistics do not appear in a standard dictionary, nor is there a dictionary of fulfillment or warehouse management definitions. We offer this glossary to help you better understand our business. If you have a term you would like defined, or have a definition that you would like to share with us, please send us an e-mail.

Jump to terms:

- pallet
- pallet jack
- pallet rack
- pallet truck
- Pareto analysis
- past due
- perpetual inventory system
- physical inventory
- pick
- pick and pack
- pick-and-pass
- picking accuracy
- pick list
- pick ticket
- picker
- pick-to-carton logic
- POD (P.O.D.) - Proof Of Delivery.
- point-of-use inventory
- poly bag
- predistro
- presort
- Presorted 1st Class Mailing
- Presorted Standard
- Priority Mail
- PRO number - Progressive Number
- putaway


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pallet
1. a device used for moving and storing freight. A pallet is used as a base for sorting, stacking, and transporting goods as a unit load. The standard pallet is 40” by 48” and approximately 4 inches high. It is constructed to facilitate the placement of a the prongs of a forklift between the levels of the pallet so it may be moved onto a freight car or into a warehouse.
2. a term used to describe a unit load of freight; i.e., the amount of freight that will fit on a pallet, as in, “We need five more pallets of merchandise delivered tomorrow.”

pallet jack
also known as a pallet truck; a device smaller that a forklift for moving palletized products. A pallet jack is comprised of horizontal pallet forks mounted above steel wheels attached to a vertical framework. A pallet jack can be motorized, sometimes with a platform for the operator to stand on, or can be a unit manually-controlled by an operator walking beside, in front, or behind the unit and its palletized load.

pallet rack
storage rack, usually of steel, specifically designed to store palletized products.

pallet truck
see pallet jack.

Pareto analysis
an analysis based on the Pareto Principle, for identifying the items that account for the majority of the value, processing time, inventory, or labor associated with a designated activity or group of products. According to the Pareto Principle, often 20 percent of the merchandise, SKUs, activity, income, and many other indices of human behavior account for about 80 percent of the volume or value, so this is called the 80/20 rule. See activity based costing (ABC). Also see more online about Vilfredo Federico Damaso Pareto (1848 - 1923).

past due (or past due orders)
status pertaining to orders or products in which the fulfillment tasks associated with an order are not finished by the required ship date. This is different than back order , since the product is on hand, but it has not been shipped out.

perpetual inventory system
a system for inventory management that uses transactions to adjust on-hand balances to match the demands of the ongoing fulfillment activity

physical inventory
process of counting the products in a warehouse. See also blind count.
pick
to retrieve products from their storage slots in a warehouse so that the products can be packed and shipped to complete the order fulfillment cycle.

pick and pack (pick & pack, pick, pack and ship)
a term that refers to fulfillment of orders. Though picking and packing are involved, these are actually just two links in the process of supply chain management (SCM).

pick-and-pass
see zone picking

picking accuracy (or pick accuracy)
accuracy statistics associated with the order picking process

pick list
a list generated by a computer of what items need to be picked to fulfill and order.

pick ticket
a printed or electronic document indicating to a picker or fork lift operator what product or products need to be picked from the warehouse to fulfill an order. The pick ticket will often identify the product location, product number or bin number, quantity, and sometimes lot number, and other product attributes.

picker
a person responsible for picking products from the warehouse to fulfill a specific order.

pick-to-carton logic
computer program that calculates each order’s aggregate weight and dimensions to select the correct shipping carton prior to the order being picked. Orders are then picked directly into the shipping carton.

POD (P.O.D.) - Proof Of Delivery.
A bill of lading, or waybill that is signed by the recipient authenticating delivery of the shipment.


point-of-use inventory
material used in production processes that is stored where it is used. This could include dunnage.

polybag
(or poly bag) A polyethylene bag for storing or packaging a product ; a wrap that acts as and envelope into which a mailing piece be inserted and addressed according to USPS requirements.

predistro
(or predistrobution) a type of B2B fulfillment in which products are sorted and packed according to end-user package specifications. Individual packages are then sent to a distribution center (DC), to be consolidated with other packages destined for the same retail stores.

presort
(also postal presort) the process by of sorting mail into groups by Zip Code to qualify for postal discounts.

Presorted 1st Class Mailing
a rate category of the United States Postal Service (USPS) for a first class mailing requiring that at least 500 addressed mail pieces be sorted according to USPS standards. Barcodes are required for automation discounts.

Presorted Standard
the USPS postage rate for a class of mail known as Standard Mail pieces (previously known as “bulk mail”) that are part of a mailing and that meets a minimum volume with appropriate preparation.

Priority Mail
First-Class Mail weighing more than 13 ounces, or other mail matter weighing less than 13 ounces mailed at Priority Mail rates. Priority Mail provides expedited delivery.

PRO number - Progressive Number
This is a number from a continuous series of numbers assigned by a transportation carrier to track successive shipments. PRO numbers are often paired with SCAC codes to form a longer barcode to pair the carrier ID with the shipment ID. Barcoded pallets can be scanned at all stages of transport to track their progress though the supply chain. When a single shipment contains several PRO number, all PRO numbers can be assigned to one PRO number to represent all the pallets in the shipment for tracking purposes.

putaway
the process of moving goods from the time that they are unloaded at a warehouse to the time that the goods are stored in their designated location.