5 Things to Keep In Mind for Holiday Shipping
The holidays are once again upon us! Everyone loves the holiday season, but with tight capacity and sensitive time-tables, it can be a major source of stress and costly mistakes. We want to share some best practices to help with your holiday shipping.
Retailers reward last minute holiday shoppers with the best deals. With the increased availability same-day delivery for online shopping, customers have become increasingly reliant on eleventh hour shopping. This makes it much harder to predict and prepare for items that need to be restocked.
1. Work with your retailers to deliver inventory earlier.
If more inventory is needed down the line, you will have time to manage additional orders. This will also give you time to determine top-selling items and take necessary steps to prepare the inventory needed to last throughout the holiday season.
2. You can’t control the weather, so you better plan for it.
You may feel like you’ve planned for every contingency but there are some things that are beyond your control. The winter season brings unpredictable weather that can impact your freight delivery timeline. While you can’t control the weather, you can prepare for it: build in additional time whenever possible to give your shipment the extra cushion it might need if snowpocalypse hits at just the wrong time.
3. Supply chain optimization is always important.
It is key to saving you money and time, but is especially important during the holidays. Review your processes to make sure everything is running as smoothly as possible. A Supply Chain Optimization Specialist can give you insight from the perspective of someone trained to evaluate and implement changes to maximize your efficiency and minimize freight spend. If your business sees a large spike in shipping needs, you may need additional staff to keep up with demand. Consider who you are hiring and when you’re hiring them. A new temp hire will not have the experience or company knowledge that someone who has already been trained and has been working for your company. It may be more efficient to add hours to your current part-time staff. On the flip side, if hiring seasonal staff makes more sense, make sure that their training and your processes provide them with everything they need to follow proper company protocol and maintain efficiency.
4. Create a plan to solve common problems.
Look for patterns of reoccurring issues that have come up in the past and make an action plan to prevent them moving forward. Also, don’t wait to evaluate issues that come up this year. Track them as they come up, and trouble-shoot solutions now, while they are fresh in your mind. Staying on top of the issues that arise will make the next run even smoother with less work.
5. It can pay to partner with broker that focuses on Enterprise Solutions.
Between the increase of shipping needs during the holidays and the current driver shortage, finding a truck during the holiday season can be difficult. A specialized Enterprise Solutions team provides creative solutions for consolidating shipments, increasing process efficiency, and decreasing freight spend.