Christmas is the busiest time of the year for many people and industries, but for warehouses and delivery teams busy is an understatement. The surge in shopping for gifts, food and drink, the expectation of quick delivery times and poor wintry weather combine to create a trifactor of demanding conditions. Maintaining warehouse logistics is like looking after a well-oiled machine: keeping all departments moving in sync to deliver stock to supermarkets, shops and homes on time and without a hitch.
However, for many online shoppers, late deliveries are a frequent problem. Over the Christmas period in 2016, 20 million customers in the UK experienced delays, an increase of 13% from 2015. Data from The Institute of Customer Service indicates that the delivery failures led to a potential loss of £3.9billion for retailers. 71% of respondents to the ICS’ survey said that they were less likely to shop again with a retailer who had failed to meet delivery expectations, leading to warnings about future costs of late deliveries.
Jo Causon, CEO of The Institute of Customer Service commented: “Late deliveries are a recurring problem, and it is getting worse year on year. [...] In an increasingly competitive market online – both throughout the festive season and beyond – retailers should prioritise providing customers with a consistent and reliable delivery service. Failing to do so could negatively impact their reputation and sales the following year, with wider Institute research revealing that improvements in customer service could add £81.5 billion to the UK GDP in just 12 months.”
With more retailers offering click-and-collect, same-day delivery options and online shopping increasing, the planning and management of supply chains is constantly evolving to keep up with demand. Manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers and the industry as a whole need to work hard to create efficient multichannel operations. Flexible workforces to accommodate peak periods, streamlining store fulfilment and making workplace improvements are all steps to make warehouses and distribution centres more effectual.
Practical measures such as improving loading bays can make big efficiency savings - as well as improving energy efficiency. Hormann’s recently launched BBS dock shelter is specifically designed for smaller vehicles such as the VW Crafter and Mercedes Sprinter, and forms a complete seal around the vehicle once docked. This makes the vehicle, its contents and the warehouse safe and secure from the elements or damage. Choosing the right docks for your fleet is just as important as the fleet you choose, and an investment that will create long term benefits.
We supply and install loading docks by Hormann, as well as high-speed doors, crash doors and PVC curtains to keep your warehousing ahead of the game. For a free survey or to discuss our services call 0800 0180304 or email email@example.com.
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