Supply Chain and Operations Management Glossary (Z)

Zero sum game: A situation in which the total amount of profit ( or “pie”) is fixed. Individual players by their actions can only affect how the profit is allocated (or pie is cut). Also called a constant sum game. In contrast, see Prisoner’s dilemma.

Zone skipping: A shipping method by which the shipper uses a public delivery service such as UPS or USPS to deliver its product the last few kilometers to the final customer, but the shipper uses its own trucks to ship its product for the initial long distance, skipping zones as perhaps defined by the public carrier’s rate schedule. The shipper delivers the product to a UPS or USPS office in the distant city for the final delivery. Zone skipping may be efficient because it avoids the initial sorting step incurred if the shipment is delivered to the public carrier at the origin city. Even though the shipper knows that this big collection of packages goes to one distant city, the public carrier rediscovers this as it is processed through its sorting system.

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