I am sure the most important question that any business that ships products asks is how can I make the job of the people picking up at my warehouse easier? Said no shipper ever….
However the companies that are actually “answering” this question are not only saving money in shipping products, they are also making their shipping procedures a competitive advantage over their competitors. Being attractive to carriers makes you a Shipper of Choice.
The phrase “Shipper of Choice” is something a smaller company has heard before but has always thought of that term to be reserved to the bigger boys. Now this may be true for a company looking to get a prestigious trophy but there is plenty of reward for a smaller company to make an effort to become a Shipper of Choice for their carrier and logistics partners. Even if they do not have the budget the bigger shippers have to spend on state of the art warehousing infrastructure.
Here are 3 Simple Tips on how to make your warehouse process more efficient and make your freight more attractive to carriers to save you money:
1. Know your Weight and Dimensions
Supply your logistics provider with the proper weight and dimensions of each pallet to help avoid any unnecessary reweighing charges imposed by the carrier. You don’t need a fancy dimensioner or one of those forklifts where the weight scale is on the actual forklifts. A simple measuring tape and a good quality industrial scale is all you need. Combine those two tools with an assembly-line like process with your warehouse team and your carrier’s accounting department will love you, as they will never have the need to redo invoices.
2. Invest in More Shrink Wrap
Use more than one layer of shrink wrap on pallets and invest in using corner boards to protect your pallets. Avoid spending more time in freight claims and delivering lousy packaging to your clients by just adding a couple of more layers of shrink wrap. Plus, avoiding the need to file more freight claims is always a plus in negotiating lower rates with your carrier partners.
3. Implement Receiving/Shipping policies…and try not to deviate from them
This is a loaded tip but if there is two things not to deviate from is having strict dock hours and an A to Z procedure for drivers when they get to your warehouse. Avoid dry run charges by keeping consistent dock hours. Also having clear instructions to the drivers delivering or picking up at your warehouse will help avoid any confusion on their part and help keep your warehouse in order.
Of course there are smaller things to implement to get you on the road of being a Shipper of Choice and I am simply just stating three tips of many. But if you just follow these three tips you will not only be attractive clients to your logistics vendors, you will have more negotiating power behind you to help you save money and provide a better experience to your customers
Bonus: Treating drivers like people goes a long way too…