From the moment a customer places an order, the clock is ticking on their evaluation of your business. Your company’s ability to ship the product to the client in as efficient a way as possible while maintaining the integrity of the product ensures repeat customer usage and recommendations to other possible customers. Any business that wants to surpass its competitors and establish a larger foothold in its field needs responsive, adaptive, and efficient supply chain management.
Increasing operational efficiency and the productivity of the delivery system is not just about hiring more workers or buying better machinery. It relies on the ability to transport vehicles to the outlets that need them. The pandemic has taught us that in-office projections of where to send more trucks cannot hold up to the actual realities of customer needs. Your company needs to be able to work with partners and vendors to respond effectively to different situations. If nothing else, this pandemic has shown us that having dedicated response plans are a necessity because we cannot know when they will be needed.
At the end of the day, logistics management is about ensuring customer satisfaction. Customers will remember the businesses that came through for them at their time of need and this will translate into a level of brand loyalty that marketing campaigns simply cannot deliver. Identify the areas in your supply chain management that need improving and begin training staff from now. This will ensure smooth and efficient service remains in place no matter what external factors may come into play.
Give Customers a Map to Follow
Customers judge the effectiveness of the company based on the amount of time it takes between them submitting their order and the product arriving at their doorstep. You can train staff, put more transport on the streets, and apply every organizational structure you can find in the warehouse but there will be unavoidable errors along the way. Every delivery will not go smoothly.
Give customers a graphic map they can view on your website to track their product. This will allow them to feel a greater sense of control and increase their ability to wait for the arrival. Companies that have applied this tactic find that the number of calls they receive from customers about parcel delivery times reduces significantly.
Improve Your SOPs to Reduce Human Error Establish a dual-check system so that two different sets of eyes check the products, the delivery order, and the shipment before it ever leaves the warehouse. This will reduce the chances of missed orders, damaged products, and allow for a better estimate on delivery times.
Follow a Delivery Truck
If you are not giving your customer-facing delivery people the proper tools, instructions, and training to finish the delivery process, then your company is dropping the ball at a very sensitive point. Some companies underpay point of delivery people, they do not receive proper training on how to lift and carry packages, and the arrangement of packages in the truck is not efficient to their delivery routes.
All this reduces the effectiveness of the delivery drivers. Track your drivers to learn how you can help them to do their job better. Remember they are human and not machinery. A happy delivery driver can provide customers with a pleasant experience that a machine can never hope to recreate.
Organize Warehouse Operations
Warehouse management is a key part of your supply chain management. Inventory management, product quality, ease of access, and quantity of material handling equipment all play a part in effectively getting the customers’ orders filled and out the door.
Effective warehouse management relies on a level of organization that will require you to train staff to work seamlessly with their computers. The staff will also need enough material handling equipment. The investment that goes into getting enough equipment will be more than made up for when the number of orders fulfilled in a day improves. Being able to fulfill more orders in a day increases revenue and allows for more orders to be made.
Automated services and systems in supply chain management can greatly improve efficiency, reduce human errors, and allow for reduced lead times. Properly trained staff can manage the systems and guarantee a level of logistical management that would be much slower without the automation. Dedicated software can provide real-time communication between warehouses, and allow for the supply chain to be managed efficiently over a larger area.
Your ability to provide a product will no longer be reliant on proximity alone. An integrated system can find the product across the warehouses, triangulate to the nearest warehouse, and have the product shipped out without the customer having to experience any delays.
Logistics management combines strategy, planning, and a degree of creativity that relies on the human portion of the supply chain. Effective logistics management departments are cost-effective and efficient. They can anticipate and adapt to supply chain situations while maintaining their dedication to delivering value to customers. They are integral to the company’s long-term goals and giving your business the edge needed to outshine competitors.