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Nationality symbol for Italy – to be shown on the rear of vehicles from that country.


Institute of Advanced Motorists. Organisation concerned with promoting advanced driving techniques for drivers of motorcars, heavy vehicles and motorcycles. Conducts driving tests for such with its own skilled examiners and awards coveted ‘IAM’ badges for display on vehicles.


International Article Numbering.


International Air Transport Association. Worldwide body concerned with the air transport industry. Sets international conditions of carriage of passenger and goods by air (i.e. ‘IATA Conditions’).

IATA code number

A two digit alphanumeric code for air shipments to indicate the export carrier.


Intermediate bulk container. Term used in connection with dangerous goods carriage. Defined as rigid, semi-rigid or flexible portable packaging having a capacity not exceeding 3 cubic metres (or 1.5 cubic metres for carrying solids in packing group 1).


International Business Machines. One of the world’s largest manufacturers of computers, etc. Sets system standard which other manufacturers match by making their machines compatible (i.e. IBM-compatible). IBM also renowned (revered even) as a company for its innovative management styles.

IC (1)

Internal combustion. System by which engines work on a two or four stroke cycle (by combusting fuel either by ignition or by compression inside the cylinder).

IC (2)

InterCity. Brand name for German railway’s (DB) InterCity rail services.


International Civil Aviation Organisation. United Nations agency which promotes and coordinates the safety of air transport.


International control book. Now almost defunct drivers’ record book in diagrammatic form. At one time required by drivers on EU national and international transport operations but now replaced by use of tachograph. Current use for AETR operations only if not using tachograph.


International Chamber of Commerce. Concerned with international trading.


Inland clearance depot. An inland terminal where customs clearance takes place.

ICE (1)

Institution of Civil Engineers. Educational and qualifying body for civil engineers with 75,000 members worldwide. Provides full range of publishing, training, recruitment and e-services through its subsidiary Thomas Telford.

ICE (2)

In car/cab entertainment. A vehicle radio/cassette/CD playing system by another name.

ICE (3)

German railway’s (DB) flagship Intercity Express rail services.


International Cargo Handling Co-ordination Association. Trade body concerned with containerisation and related shipping and transportation.


International Chamber of Shipping. Organisation of national shipping organisations promoting the interests of its national members.


International driving permit. Required for driving in countries which do not accept European national driving licenses (e.g. Bulgaria, Poland) – available from AA, RAC, RSAC.


International Diesel Service. Diesel fuel supply service operated by Kuwait Petroleum (i.e. Q8 brand name).


International Freighting Weekly. Weekly newspaper covering the worldwide freight industry.


Institute of Grocery Distribution.


Small, lightweight (i.e. aluminium), specially shaped freight container used in air transport. Basically, with sloped topsides to fit inside aircraft body holds.

IGR (Incoming Goods Report)

The report that records details of goods received.


The Institution of Highways and Transportation. Professional body for those engaged in highway design, traffic management and transportation planning, etc.


International Journal of Physical Distribution and Logistics Management. Journal for logistics professionals.


Industry Lead Body. Another name for Industry Training Organisation (ITO) – which works with the National Council for Vocational Qualifications (NCVQs).


Euphemism for illegal immigrants (also called clandestine entrants) – principally smuggled into Great Britain in the back of lorry trailers returning from Europe via the Channel ports, either with the (illegal) connivance of the driver/vehicle operator in response to bribes or, as in most cases, with no prior knowledge by the driver. Either way, offenders may be fined £2,000 per immigrant and the immigration authorities may impound the vehicle.


International Labour Organisation. International body representing labour trade unions.


Independent local radio. Local radio stations supported by advertising. Useful in transport for regular local road/weather reports.


Instrument landing system. A system whereby aircraft follow instruments and air traffic control instructions to effect a safe landing.


Institute of Logistics and Transport, formed from the Institute of Logistics (IoL) and the Chartered Institute of Transport (CIT) which merged in 1999. Professional body for those engaged in logistics and transport in all its modes. Promotes a range of educational courses, training seminars and conferences and awards Diploma in Logistics. Major annual convention in June – highlight of logistics and transport year. Information available from Web site www.iolt.org.uk.


International Maritime Consultative Organisation. United Nations sponsored body concerned with (among other things) the establishment of regulations for the safe shipping of dangerous goods


International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code. The regulations published by the IMO for transporting hazardous materials internationally.


Institution of Mechanical Engineers. Professional body for qualified engineers.


International Monetary Fund.


Institute of the Motor Industry. Professional body for those engaged in the motor trade (mainly retail).


Institute of Materials Management. Professional body for those involved (mainly) in materials handling and related industries.

Immigration controls

Controls imposed by national governments to restrict the entry of non-national and other non-authorised persons into their territories. Mainly intended to stop illegal immigrants, terrorists and other unwanted/undesirable entrants. Such controls between EU states are to be abolished under SEM liberalisation concept.

Immobiliser clause

Found in goods-in-transit (GiT) insurance policy conditions. Restrictive clause which requires vehicles to be fitted with anti-theft devices which must be set when the vehicle is left unattended.


International Maritime Organisation. United Nations agency in international shipping concerned with governmental cooperation on technical matters, safety at sea and prevention of maritime pollution from ships.

Impact alarm

A.k.a shock alarm, shock switch. Impact alarms are devices that can be attached to lift trucks to sense impacts (collisions).


To bring foreign goods into a country.  In international sales, the importer is usually the buyer or an intermediary who accepts and transmits goods to the buyer.

Import License

A document required and issued by some national governments authorising the importation of goods into their individual countries.

Import Substitution

An attempt by a country to reduce imports (and hence foreign exchange expenditures) by encouraging the development of domestic industries regardless of domestic inefficiencies.

Importer of record

The party in whose name the import entry is made.

Improvement notice

Issued by inspectors of the HSE when they find work practices/equipment which do not fully meet HSWA requirements. Employer is given a period of time in which to put matters right.

In Bond

Cargo moving under Customs control where duty has not yet been paid.

In Gate

The transaction or interchange that occurs at the time a container is received by a rail terminal or water port from another carrier.

Inactive inventory

Stock of items that have not been used for a defined period. (Source: ILT Supply-Chain Inventory Management SIG)

In-bond Shipment

A shipment status in which goods are permitted to enter a country and temporarily stored for transport to a final destination where the duty will be paid.

Inbound logistics

The movement of goods inwards. The collection, receiving, handling and storing of goods moving inwards – returns for repair, replacement, claims assessment, redistribution, etc).

In-cab computer

Extension of modern communications technology to the vehicle cab. In-cab computers provide direct communication between driver and office/central computer for passing messages/relevant data. Some provide print out (i.e. hard copy) facility for confirmation. Massive future trend predicted in this direction.

Incentive rates

Charging less per pound on heavier shipments.

Incentives and restraints

Incentives are positive measures to encourage people to make less use of their motor cars and move towards greater use of sustainable transport (e.g. bus, tram and train services). Restraints are negative measures, which force car users to move to the use of alternative, more environmentally-friendly transport modes (e.g. by prohibiting or restricting car parking).

Inching pedal

On lift trucks with internal combustion (gasoline, liquid propane, diesel) engines it is necessary to rev the engine in order to get the power needed to lift a load with the hydraulics. An inching pedal acts like a combination of a clutch pedal and brake pedal. When slightly depressed, it puts the transmission in neutral allowing the operator to rev the engine. When completely depressed it engages the brakes. An inching pedal may be a separate pedal from the brake pedal or be part of the main brake pedal.

Inclusive tour

Travel package (usually holiday) supplied by a tour operator – generally including flights, coach transfer and accommodation, and the services of a company representative to assist during travelling and at the destination.


Guide to terminology used in international freighting. Issued by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC).


A word that means security or protection against loss or financial burden. Also the liability for payment of compensation for loss, damage or injury.

Indemnity Bond

An agreement to hold a carrier harmless with regard to a liability.


A requisition for goods, enumerating conditions of the sale.  Acceptance of an indent by a seller constitutes his agreement to the conditions of the sale.

Indent exporting

Sale by the exporter to the buyer through a domestically located intermediary.

Independent action

An action whereby an ocean shipping conference member carrier sets a tariff or rate that is different from the established conference tariff or rate.

Independent Demand

Demand generated from forecasts, customer orders or service parts.

Independent Demand Item Management Models:

Models for the management of items whose demand is not strongly influenced by other items managed by the same company. These models can be characterised as follows: (1) stochastic or deterministic, depending on the variability of demand and other factors; (2) fixed quantity, fixed cycle, or hybrid – (optional replenishment).

Indictable offence

An offence which is sufficiently serious to be tried before a judge and jury in the Crown Court (i.e. enables heavier penalties to be imposed), for example causing death by reckless driving which could result in imprisonment on indictment. Most road traffic offences are tried summarily by a Magistrates Court with penalties imposed on conviction.


As in indigenisation programme. A scheme (usually in developing countries) to restrict activities to the indigenous population. For example, in transport terms, South Africa had an indigenous diesel engine manufacturing policy – basically, no imports of such; all must be built in the Republic.

Indirect carrier

A transportation line which hauls export or import traffic between ports and inland points.

Indirect costs

Costs that are not directly attributable to an operation. For example, in road transport the costs of administering a vehicle, but not including the costs which relate directly to its operation (fuel, maintenance, etc).

Indirect labour

labour that does not handle merchandise physically (i.e., supervision, record handling, inbound checking, stock control, and housekeeping).

Indirect Retail Locations

A retail location that ultimately sells your product to consumers, but who purchases your products from an intermediary, like a distributor or wholesaler.

Indirect/Distributor Channel

Your company sells and ships to the distributor. The distributor sells and ships to the end user. This may occur in multiple stages. Ultimately your products may pass through the Indirect/Distributor Channel and arrive at a retail outlet. Order information in this channel may be transmitted by electronic means. These means may include EDI, brokered systems, or linked electronic systems.

Individual validated license

A license granted by the Department of Commerce that grants permission to an exporter to export a specific amount of goods to a certain recipient for up to a two year period.

Individually validated export license

A required document issued by the U.S. Government authorising the export of specific commodities.  This license is for a specific transaction or time period in which the exporting is to take place.  Compare General export license.

Indivisible load

Same as abnormal indivisible load. One which cannot, without undue expense or risk of damage, be broken down into smaller loads for transport by road within the C&U regulations.

Industrial Truck

Vehicles used for industrial purposes. Generally used to transport materials and personnel within industrial facilities. Lift trucks (forklifts) are the most well known type of industrial truck.

Inert gas system

A system of preventing any explosion in the cargo tanks of a tanker by replacing the cargo, as it is pumped out, by an inert gas, often the exhaust of the ship’s engine. Gas-freeing must be carried out subsequently if workers have to enter the empty tanks.

Infinite Loading

Calculation of the capacity required at work centres in the time periods required regardless of the capacity available to perform this work.

Inflammable liquids

Liquids liable to spontaneous combustion which give off inflammable vapours at or below 80 degrees F. For example, ether, ethyl, benzine, gasoline, paints, enamels, carbon disulphide, etc.

Inflation accounting

A system of accounting (especially in regard to depreciation calculations) which takes account of the effects of inflation. For example, calculating the likely replacement cost of a vehicle when the new price after five years may be, say, double the original price.

Informal solicitation

A solicitation which does not require a sealed response.

Information in writing

Re the carriage of dangerous goods by road, the information which the consignor must give to the haulier to enable him to comply with the law and to be aware of the risks to the health or safety of any person created by the substance being carried. Further, that which the employer must give to his driver indicating the identity of the substance, the dangers which may arise from the products being carried and the action to be taken in an emergency (i.e. spillage/accident) – usually accomplished by issuing a relevant TREMCARD.

Information Infrastructure

A structured collection of information system components and organisation processes enabling flow of information to effect enterprise integration.

Information Oscillation

A concept that identifies the need to manage information in the supply chain, taking into account such factors as time zones, shipping and receiving schedules, and open and closed days. As near-real-time event information is provided in collaborative environments, work process rules must account for escalation processes to allow for human intervention in continuous operations.


The fixed part of a transport system such as the road and the rail track, its environs (verges, footpaths and rail stations, etc), plus signs and signalling (traditional railway term for the infrastructure is ‘track, terminals and signalling’). Also includes transport terminals, depots and interchanges, airports, seaports and canals.

Inherent Advantage

The cost and service benefits of one mode compared with other modes.

Inherent vice

A defect in freight or its packaging which of itself may contribute to its deterioration, wastage and need for final destruction, without any negligent or other contributory causes on the part of the shipper or carrier.


Term meaning operations conducted by the firm itself using its own staff and resources, facilities, etc as opposed to contracted-out operations, as in in-house transport operations, otherwise known as own account.

Initial carrier

The transportation line to which a shipment is tendered at origin by the shipper.

Initial point

The point at which a shipment originates.


A term used to differentiate between land and water segments of a transshipment.

Inland Bill of Lading

The carriage contract used in transport from a shipping point overland to the exporter’s international carrier location.

Inland carrier

A transportation line that hauls export of import traffic between ports and inland points.

Inland Clearance Depot

Inland location where cargo, particularly containerised, may be cleared by customs.

Inland waters

Term referring to lakes, streams, rivers, canals, waterways, inlets, bays and the like.

In-line transversely

Legal term (mainly in C&U regulations) to describe ‘across the vehicle’ (i.e. as with wheels on an axle which are in line transversely). Transverse plane defined as: ‘a vertical plane at right angles to the longitudinal axis of the vehicle’).


International Maritime Satellite System.

Inner Pack

A unit that is a multiple of a storage case. Normally this is some shrink-wrapped or bundled quantity of retail units within a case. The inner pack is made up of one or many retail units. This quantity is not required to equal the number of retail units in a shipping unit.

In-process goods

Partially completed final products that are still in the production process either as an accumulation of partially completed work or the queue of material awaiting further processing. (Source: ILT Supply- Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Input Device

That portion of a bar code reading system that employs electro-optical techniques to determine the localised reflectivity of a symbol.


A person/firm is insolvent when it cannot pay its debts. It is illegal in many countries for a firm to continue trading (i.e. accepting credit) when insolvent.

In sourcing

The opposite of outsourcing, that is, a service performed in-house.

Inspection Certificate

A document certifying that merchandise (such as perishable goods) was in good condition immediately prior to shipment.


Term for Vehicle Inspectorate (VI) enforcement officers and vehicle examiners. Correctly, they are ‘authorised examiners’ (which term also includes London taxi examiners, authorised police officers and persons appointed for the purpose by a chief police officer).


Goods vehicle body lined with insulation for the carriage of cool products. Usually such also have refrigeration units for fully chilled/ frozen products carriage.


A contract between an insurance company and a company, person or group which provides for a money payment in case of a covered loss or damage, accident or death.


Integrated Telematics for Advanced Communication in Freight Transport. A European Commission funded project examining ways to combine telematics applications such as fleet management systems, route planning, tracking and tracing and two-way communication systems for road hauliers to advance efficiency and competitiveness.

Integral construction

A form of vehicle construction where the body and chassis form an integral unit as some buses and minibuses and in certain light goods vehicles such as panel vans. Principally, the running units such as engine, transmission and suspension units are attached directly to the body shell.

Integrated carrier

Transport operator which has its own road vehicles and aircraft, usually offering Europe-wide or worldwide express deliveries. Provides the customer with, effectively, a ‘one-stop’ service.

Integrated Logistics

A comprehensive, system-wide view of the entire supply chain as a single process, from raw materials supply through finished goods distribution. All functions that make up the supply chain are managed as a single entity, rather than managing individual functions separately.

Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN)

A computer term describing the networks and equipment for integrated broadband transmissions of data, voice, and image, from rates of 144 Kbps to 2 Mbps. ISDN allows integration of data, voice, and video over the same digital links.

Integrated systems

Computer term for multiple (micro) computer systems (e.g. desktop systems) which enable many units to be interconnected to each other and centrally to give free access and data exchange with central or remote data processing and printing. Also called integrated architectures.

Integrated Tow Barge

A series of barges that are connected together to operate as one unit.

Integrated transport

The key transport philosophy of the UK government in which not only bus and train services are integrated, but also where integration takes place in a wider scope. That is, between thinking and action, bus and train, passenger and freight, regional and national, public and private, services all working together as idealised in the government’s White Paper on the Future of Transport: ‘A New Deal for Transport – Better for Everyone’ published in July 1998.

Intellectual Property (IP)

Property of an enterprise or individual which is typically maintained in a digital form. This may include software program code or digital documents, music, videos, etc.

Intelligent transport systems

Use of modern computing technology and telecommunications to aid the development and implementation of more efficient and safer transport systems.

Intent to deny

A letter that informs an applicant of the decision by the Bureau of Export Administration’s to deny a license application.


In passenger transport, for example, a terminal where passengers can board, alight and change buses/services. In road freight and combined road-rail transport, where loading and unloading takes place and/or road vehicles are loaded on to or off rail wagons (e.g. freight interchange).

Interchange Point

A location where one carrier delivers freight to another carrier.


A service between main centres such as a main line passenger rail service operating between say, London and Manchester, etc.

Intercoastal Carriers

Water carriers that transport freight between East and West Coast ports, usually by way of the Panama Canal.

Intercorporate Hauling

A private carrier hauling the goods of a subsidiary and charging the subsidiary a fee: this is legal if the subsidiary is wholly owned (100%) or if the private carrier has common carrier authority.


Term (especially in relation to computers) for the matching of different units (i.e. VDU to micro-processor to printer to peripherals, etc) – the junction between two devices.

Inter-governmental maritime consultative organisation

Body for definition of dangerous categories or hazardous cargo (IMCO Classes).

Interim license

In operator (‘O’) licensing, of the Traffic Commissioner may grant (on request) an interim license to enable an urgent operation to start pending his consideration of the full license application. A vehicle windscreen disc is issued and the license will remain valid until the TC’s decision. The grant of an interim license is no guarantee of a full license.

Interior points intermodal (IPI)

A term used by ocean carriers to describe door to door delivery service.  Ocean carriers frequently quote rates on an IPI basis.

Interleaved Bar Code

A bar code in which characters are paired together using bars to represent the first character and spaces to represent the second, i.e. Interleaved 2 of 5.


The practice of assigning an employee multiple tasks which are performed concurrently.


Service where passengers or freight can be transferred from one vehicle or aircraft to another, usually belonging to the same operator, for onward travel to the destination.

Interline Freight

Freight moving from point of origin to destination over the lines of two or more transportation lines.

Intermediate Destination

A stopping point for a shipment prior to the final destination.

Intermediate product

A product for which independent demand can exist and for which there is also demand as part of another higher-level product e.g. a single can and a multi-can pack or a subassembly spare and the major assembly of which it forms part. (Source: ILT Supply-Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Intermediately Positioned Warehouse 

A warehouse located between customers and manufacturing plants to provide increased customer service and reduced distribution cost.

Intermittent-flow, fixed-path equipment

Materials handling devices that include cranes, monorails, and stacker cranes.


Transportation term describing the use of multiple modes of transportation for a shipment. Ocean containers that are picked up by a truck, delivered to port, transported by ship, and then picked up by another truck are a common example of intermodal transportation. In the trucking industry, intermodal usually refers to the combination of trucking and rail transportation.

Intermodal Container Transfer Facility

A facility where cargo is transferred from one mode of transportation to another, usually from ship or truck to rail.

Intermodal Marketing Company (IMC)

An intermediary that sells intermodal services to shippers.

Intermodal terminal

A location where links between different transportation modes and networks connect. Using more than one mode of transportation in moving persons and goods. For example, a shipment moved over 1000 miles could travel by truck for one portion of the trip, and then transfer to rail at a designated terminal.

Intermodal transport unit (ITU)

Container, swap body or semi-trailer/goods road motor vehicle suitable for intermodal transport.

Intermodal Transportation

Transporting freight by using two or more transportation modes such as by truck and rail or truck and ocean-going vessel.

Intermodal vehicle

In the UK a heavy vehicle (artic or drawbar combination) allowed to run at 44 tonnes gross weight provided it is engaged solely on intermodal operations to or from a rail terminal. Must be equipped with road-friendly suspension.

Internal control program

A program to ensure that exports and re-exports are not made contrary to the Export Administration Regulations.  

Internal Customer

The recipient (person or department) of another person’s or department’s output (good, service, or information) within an organisation.

Internal labour and Overhead

The portion of COGS that is typically reported as labour and overhead, less any costs already classified as “outsourced.”

Internal Water Carriers

Water carriers that operate over internal, navigable rivers such as the Mississippi, Ohio, and Missouri in the USA or River Thames in the UK.

International Air Transport Association (IATA)

International Air Transport Association. Worldwide body concerned with the air transport industry. Sets international conditions of carriage of passenger and goods by air (i.e. ‘IATA Conditions’).

International and territorial operations

In general, operations outside the territory of the United States, including operations between U.S. points separated by foreign territory or major expanses of international waters.

International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO)

An international agency – part of the United Nations – that is responsible for air safety and for standardising air traffic control, airport design safety, and safety features worldwide.

International driving permit

Form of driving ‘license’ acceptable internationally but particularly where, for example, a standard driving license is not recognised Available from, for example, RAC/AA or government driving authority to residents of a country over 18 years of age and covers only vehicles which they are qualified to drive (i.e. on their normal license).

International freight forwarder

A person or business who handles the export shipment and export documentation requirements of a third party.

International load line certificate

A certificate which gives details of a ship’s freeboards and states that the ship has been surveyed and the appropriate load lines marked on her sides. A classification society or the Coast Guard issues this certificate.

International Maritime Bureau (IMB)

A special division of the International Chamber of Commerce.

International Maritime Organisation (IMO)

A United Nations-affiliated organisation representing all maritime countries in matters affecting maritime transportation, including the movement of dangerous goods. The organisation also is involved in deliberations on marine environmental pollution.

International Oil Pollution Compensation Funds

An inter-governmental agency designed to pay compensation for oil pollution damage, exceeding the ship owner’s liability. It was created by an IMO Convention in 1971 and started its operations in October 1978. Contributions come mainly from the oil companies of the 104 member states.

International proof of compliance

In connection with ATP operations, the certificate or more particularly the plate issued when the vehicle/ container is tested to show that it complies fully with the requirements of the Accord.

International Safety Management code

This international standard for the safe management and operation of ships prescribes rules for the organisation of a shipping company management in the context of safety and pollution prevention and requires the development and implementation of a safety management system.

International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS)

Adopted by the IMO and based on the U.S. MTSA, came into force on July 1, 2004. It is a comprehensive, mandatory security regime for international shipping and port facility operations agreed to by the members of the IMO. Ships must be certified by their flag states to ensure that mandated security measures have been implemented; port facilities must undergo security vulnerability assessments that form the basis of security plans approved by their government authorities.

International Standards Organisation (ISO)

An organisation within the United Nations to which all national and other standard setting bodies (should) defer. Develops and monitors international standards, including OSI, EDIFACT, and X.400

International tonnage certificate

A certificate issued to a ship-owner by a government department in the case of a ship whose gross and net tonnages have been determined in accordance with the International Convention of Tonnage Measurement of Ships. The certificate states the gross and net tonnages together with details of the spaces attributed to each.

International Transport and Information System (INTIS)

An organisation with the aim to improve the position of the port of Rotterdam by the development, realisation and exploitation of a communication- and information network for computers.

International transport operations/journeys

Term referring to transport operations that cross national boundaries (e.g. UK, Europe, Northern Ireland, Irish Republic, etc). Particularly relevant to operator licensing, professional competence qualifications and exemptions to EU driving hours/tachograph regulations.


The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks that use the standard Internet Protocol Suite (TCP/IP) to serve billions of users worldwide. It is a network of networks that consists of millions of private, public, academic, business, and government networks of local to global scope that are linked by a broad array of electronic and optical networking technologies. The Internet carries a vast array of information resources and services, most notably the inter-linked hypertext documents of the World Wide Web (WWW) and the infrastructure to support electronic mail.

Interrupted rest period

Provision in EU hours law whereby drivers’ normal daily rest period may be interrupted, once only and for not more than one hour, when journey involves travel in part on ship or rail. This must include Customs clearance and other formalities; the driver must have access to a bunk/couchette for both parts of the rest period which must be increased by two hours.


In C&U regulations, the area in which minimum ground clearance for trailers is measured (i.e. on single axle semi-trailers, between the point of support at forward end and the centre of axle on semi-trailer; on multi-axle semi-trailers, between point of support at forward end to midway between centres of the foremost and rearmost semi-trailer axles – in the case of other trailers measured from centre of front axle or midway between such axles and midway between rear axles).

Interstate Commerce

The transportation of persons or property between states; in the course of the movement, the shipment crosses a state boundary line.

Interstate System

The National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, 42,000 miles of four lane, limited-access roads connecting major population centres in the United States.


An association of independent tanker owners whose aims are to represent the views of its members internationally.


Domestic shipping routes along a single coast.

Intra-Manufacturing Re-plan Cycle

Average elapsed time, in calendar days, between the time a regenerated forecast is accepted by the end-product manufacturing/assembly location, and the time that the revised plan is reflected in the Master Production Schedule of all the affected internal subassembly/ component producing plant(s). (An element of Total Supply Chain Response Time)


Computer network with restricted access e.g. to password holders or to permitted users within a firm.

In-transit Inventory

Material moving between two or more locations, usually separated geographically; for example, finished goods being shipped from a plant to a distribution centre In-transit inventory is an easily overlooked component of total supply chain availability.


Customs system for collecting statistics on the trade in goods between countries of the European Union.

Intrastate Commerce

The transportation of persons or property between points within a state. A shipment between two points within a state may be interstate if the shipment had a prior or subsequent move outside of the state and the intent of the shipper was an interstate shipment at the time of shipment.

Intrinsic Forecast Method

In forecasting, a forecast based on internal factors, such as an average of past sales.

Intrinsically safe tachograph

Tachograph designed for and fitted to goods vehicle wired to meet special requirements for petroleum and other dangerous goods carrying vehicles (in common terms, to meet ‘petroleum regulations’). Such vehicles have battery master cut-off switches which isolate current to avoid electrical discharge. Where tachographs are fitted a continuous current supply is necessary to operate the clock so a limited by-pass of the master switch is arranged via a barrier device in accordance with exacting standards imposed by BASEEFA.

Invalidation of insurance cover

Likely if policy conditions are breached or vehicle is used for unauthorised purpose. Mainly occurs, for example, when vehicles are driven by non-license holders, are not correctly ‘O’ licensed or road taxed or are operated in unroadworthy condition (i.e. contrary to law).


A detailed list of goods (i.e. in warehouse or on board a vehicle).

Inventory Accuracy

When the on-hand quantity is equivalent to the perpetual balance (plus or minus the designated count tolerances). Often referred to as a percentage showing the variance between book inventory and actual count. This is a major performance metric for any organisation which manages large inventories. Typical minimum and best practice averages would be 95% and 99%.which manages large inventories. Typical minimum and best practice averages would be 95% and 99%.

Inventory Balance Location Accuracy

When the on-hand quantity in the specified locations is equivalent to the perpetual balance (plus or minus the designated count tolerances).

Inventory Carrying Cost

One of the elements comprising a company’s total supply-chain management costs. These costs consist of the following:
1. Opportunity Cost: The opportunity cost of holding inventory. This should be based on the company’s own cost of capital standards using the following formula. Calculation: Cost of Capital x Average Net Value of Inventory
2. Shrinkage: The costs associated with breakage, pilferage, and deterioration of inventories. Usually pertains to the loss of material through handling damage, theft, or neglect.
3. Insurance and Taxes: The cost of insuring inventories and taxes associated with the holding of inventory.
4. Total Obsolescence for Raw Material, WIP, and Finished Goods Inventory: Inventory reserves taken due to obsolescence and scrap and includes products exceeding the shelf life, i.e. spoils and is no good for use in its original purpose (do not include reserves taken for Field Service Parts).
5. Channel Obsolescence: Aging allowances paid to channel partners, provisions for buy-back agreements, etc. Includes all material that goes obsolete while in a distribution channel. Usually, a distributor will demand a refund on material that goes bad (shelf life) or is no longer needed because of changing needs.
6. Field Service Parts Obsolescence: Reserves taken due to obsolescence and scrap. Field Service Parts are those inventory kept at locations outside the four walls of the manufacturing plant i.e., distribution centre or warehouse.

Inventory control

Management task of keeping check on inventory of goods to ensure none go missing and that stock levels are maintained so that supplies are available where and when required. Usually a function for computers which monitor outflows of orders (via order processing system) and inflows of new stock so are able to show automatically current stock level (in theory if no theft, etc).

Inventory Days of Supply (for RM, WIP, PFG, and FFG)

Total gross value of inventory for the category (raw materials, work in process, partially finished goods, or fully-finished goods) at standard cost before reserves for excess and obsolescence. It includes only inventory that is on the books and currently owned by the business entity. Future liabilities such as consignments from suppliers are not included.

[5 Point Annual Average Gross Inventory] / [Calendar Year Value of Transfers / 365]

Inventory Deployment

A technique for strategically positioning inventory to meet customer service levels while minimising inventory and storage levels. Excess inventory is replaced with information derived through monitoring supply, demand and inventory at rest as well as in motion.

Inventory Detail

A pallet of a single product located in a warehouse location. When a pallet is put away, the information from the receipt detail is transferred to the inventory detail. The inventory detail is then associated with the location.

Inventory Management

The effective management of stock, materials, parts and finished products, including additions and deletions (i.e. control of movements in and out). Essential for determining capital investment returns and the viability of stock levels and for the avoidance of opportunity cost (i.e. money tied up in stock that could be better used).

Inventory modelling

The evaluation of alternative inventory design characteristics or inventory parameters using analytical or simulation processes to assist management decisions. (Source: ILT Supply-Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Inventory Planning Systems

The systems that help in strategically balancing the inventory policy and customer service levels throughout the supply chain. These systems calculate time-phased order quantities and safety stock, using selected inventory strategies. Some inventory planning systems conduct what-if analysis and that compares the current inventory policy with simulated inventory

Inventory policy

A statement of a company’s goals and approach to inventory management. (Source: ILT Supply-Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Inventory process

Any business process that involves inventory. Includes the receiving of parts, putting them away, and their storage, withdrawal, issue and movement through work in process, while simultaneously tracking their movement and maintaining records of those events and their effects. (Source: ILT Supply-Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Inventory records

Records that reflect how much and what kind of inventories a company has on hand, committed (allocated) to work in process, and on order. (Source: ILT Supply-Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Inventory Reduction

When inventory is reduced by the allocation of orders

Inventory shrinkage

Losses resulting from scrap, deterioration, pilferage, etc. (Source: ILT Supply-Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Inventory Turnover

See Inventory Turns

Inventory Turns

The cost of goods sold divided by the average level of inventory on hand. This ratio measures how many times a company’s inventory has been sold during a period of time. Operationally, inventory turns are measured as total throughput divided by average level of inventory for a given period; How many times a year the average inventory for a firm changes over, or is sold.

Inventory value

The value of inventory at either cost or market value. The value of the inventory is usually computed on a first in first out (FIFO), last in first out (LIFO) or average cost basis. (Source: ILT Supply- Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Inventory Velocity

The speed with which inventory moves through a defined cycle.

Inventory, Days of

The number of days of inventory on-hand at any given time.

Investors in People

A National Standard setting a level of good practice for improving organisational performance through training and development of the workforce.

Invisible exports

Income from exports including banking, insurance, foreign investment, shipping and incoming tourism.

Invisible Trade

Items such as freight, insurance, and financial services that, are included in a country’s balance-of-payments accounts (in the “current” account), even though they are not recorded as physically visible exports and imports.


A detailed statement showing goods sold and amounts for each. The invoice is prepared by the seller and acts as the document that the buyer will use to make payment.

Inward charges

Charges incurred by a ship or cargo when entering a port.


Institute of Transport Administration. Professional body for those engaged in all forms of transport. Conducts examinations and awards various membership grades on results. Membership in UK and abroad. Membership in certain grades confers professional competence.


Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control. New regulatory package from the Environment Agency to control pollution.


Institute of Purchasing and Supply. Professional body for those engaged in purchasing and supply functions (includes a logistics/distribution element).


Inland Rail Depot, which is used for Customs Clearance.


International Road Freight Office. Department of DoT based at Newcastle upon Tyne which deals with international road freighting documentation (allocation of road haulage permits, etc). Provides general advice to international hauliers and publishes free booklet, A Guide to Taking Your Lorry Abroad.

Irregular Route Carrier

A motor carrier that is permitted to provide service utilising any route.


Institute of Road Transport Engineers. Professional body for road transport engineers. Membership in certain grades confers professional competence. Now merged with the Institute of Plant Engineers to form the Society of Operations Engineers.


International Road Transport Union. International body (effectively international trade association to which national trade associations belong – e.g. RHA/FTA/CPT in UK) based in Geneva and concerned with all aspects of road transport from goods/passenger vehicle operation to taxis. Involved with setting standards, campaigning to governments and the EC, etc for more liberal control of transport, on legislative measures and on free traffic flows, etc. Holds annual world congress, publishes handbook and other relevant road transport oriented literature (on transport in the environment, etc).

IRU Academy

Sets international standards for the Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC). Has a number of national training organisations accredited to it.


Integrated services digital networks. High-capacity telephone lines capable of transmitting substantial volumes of data at high speed.


Information Society Initiative. Government and industry partnership designed to help small and medium-sized enterprises thrive in the information-based economy and improve their efficiency and profitability through the effective use of information technology.


International Standards Organisation (or International Organisation for Standardisation). Body concerned with the establishment of international standards in many spheres, e.g. in transport connection, the dimensions for and corner fittings of shipping containers.

ISO 9000

The ISO series of standards for quality assurance – has superseded BS 5750 in UK.

ISO container

Shipping container built to conform to the dimensions and specification of the ISO.


Internet service provider. Firm providing Internet and e-mail connection services to users, usually on subscription.

Issue list

A document that states all the parts to be issued.

Issue tickets

An authorisation to withdraw allocated stock items from the stockroom. When presented to the stockroom, they can be exchanged for the parts designated. (Source: ILT Supply-Chain Inventory Management SIG)

Issuing documents

The physical documents that communicate specifically how much of what needs to be issued to where. Issue lists, issue tickets and issue decks are all forms of issuing documents. (Source: ILT Supply- Chain Inventory Management SIG)

IT (1)

Information technology. Computer-based technology to provide information to business and private users; includes Internet access to the WWW and e-mail.

IT (2)

Intelligent transport, i.e. as in intelligent transport systems (ITS).

IT (3)

Inclusive tour. A term used in passenger transport operations to describe journeys incorporating both travel and accommodation, plus meals, etc in some cases.


Industry Training Board. Now replaced by Industry Training Organisations

Itemised pay statement

A detailed statement of pay to which every employee is entitled showing the gross pay, any deductions, the net amount payable and where this is paid by alternate means (e.g. part cash/cheque, part by bank transfer), the different amounts so paid. Employees have a right to apply to a tribunal if pay statements are not provided or are not correct.


Term basically meaning trial and error. A practice often used in connection with studies on alternative distribution/logistics strategies seeking to find ‘best’ solutions.


International Transport Workers Federation.


Industry Training Organisations. Department of Employment supported bodies that set training standards in most industries – they replace Industry Training Boards (ITBs). Also known as Industry Lead Bodies (ILBs), which work with the National Council for Vocational Qualifications (NCQVs).


Intelligent transport systems.


Invitation to tender. Procedure involved in selecting third-party logistics contractors (i.e. inviting potential contractors to submit their proposals). The document is key to the process because it defines in a standard format and in precise detail the task to be undertaken. This facilitates objective comparison of competing quotations.


Infinitely variable transmission. Alternative to conventional multi-gear vehicle transmission system.

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