Black Friday, Christmas, the New Year – all of these and more are just around the corner and for those of us in the delivery industry, that means an increase in demand. From the shipment of goods to stores across Europe, to the simple transport of deliveries from warehouse to distributer, getting the abundance of gifts and products likely to become part of the supply chain in the coming weeks is a daunting prospect. From fears of delays and driver shortages, to navigating busy roads and even busier handling stations, preparing well in advance is the key to a smooth-running holiday period – but what exactly do we do? Here, we’re exploring precisely that.
If there is any one tool that any freight forwarding company needs to utilise during this busy period, it’s a transport management system. These systems can help promote better organisation, better transparency and ultimately, a smoother run from A to B. With these systems, the ability to track parcels, ensure that resources and workforce are available as they’re needed and simply being able to keep a handle on the situation can be made much simpler.
Preparing in advance is another key part of ensuring that the holiday season doesn’t overwhelm a company. Of course, this is often easier said than done but with data analytics, transport management and resource management, it’s definitely a possibility. By preparing in advance and ensuring that resources can never run low when they’re needed most, there doesn’t have to be a lull in the speed of deliveries.
Outsourcing for a workforce is another way to help speed up the process. The holiday season brings with it a strain on workforces and when your drivers or other staff need to be out on the road, spending time filling in paperwork or completing admin tasks at the warehouse or headquarters can seem like a waste of time – this is where outsourcing comes in. While this doesn’t work for every company and in many cases isn’t needed, by sending some menial tasks out of office rather than in-house, you can help free up valuable staff, resources and time when they’re needed most.
Another way to help relieve some of the strain is to hire in-house on a temporary basis. If you know you’re going to have a busy Christmas period, hiring in extra staff can help ensure that there is always someone available when they’re needed. By offering temporary contracts, you can gain the help you need, before letting them go when things begin to calm down again after the January sales.
On a similar strain to advance preparation, ensuring that you have a buffer in place is also a great way to ensure you can never be overwhelmed. Time after time, leading businesses can find themselves snowed under with orders, freight requests and more but by factoring in a buffer, this can be reduced, or avoided completely. Order more products than your predictions suggest, or cater for extra orders when organising your freight delivery – this can all help prevent a delay, hold-up or simply an oversaturated supply chain during this year’s festivities.
While there may not be any fool-proof way to deal with demand, by ensuring that transport management, resource management and your workforce are all in place and ready to go, retail companies and freight forwarders alike can better prepare for the coming rush.
To book your Christmas freight, simply get in touch with a member of our expert team or fill in our online quote form, today.