The holidays are just around the corner meaning increased demand for consumer goods and an even busier supply chain. It’s not just retail or consumer focused companies who feel the weight either, increased demand for services and tools go up as well. Every single aspect of the supply chain just get’s busier.T he National Retail Organization (NRO) forecasts retail sales will grow 3.5% to4.1%, to more than $3.9 trillion. Organizations prepare each year for this timeto ensure they can keep up. Here are five ways to ensure your organization is up to speed.
1. Give customers visibility to last mile delivery.
We talk a lot about how the last mile delivery can be the most expensive and this applies to both the consumer receiving a package and the trailer yard. On the retail side, consumers want to know where their orders are and when they are going to receive them. Ensuring your process includes providing this information whether that be through email or the ordering platform will eliminate unnecessary support calls so you can stay focused on keeping your operation running as efficiently as possible. On the yard management side, visibility into your yard operations will increase efficiencies and turn around times to get items quickly loaded. Your yard management system will also make sure you’re not wasting time looking for empty trailers/containers or losing them from a disorganized system.
2. Communicate Well Between Vendors and Partners.
Vendors and partners are in a similar situation and trying to keep up during the busy holiday season. Miscommunications are bound to happen so having a plan now between your organizations can help streamline and save time during a communication breakdown. Set up internal processes for how to handle miscommunications that may occur and it’s safe to say over communication during this time will be more beneficial than not.
3. Forecast Your Consumer/Client Trends and Demands.
When talking with your clients, do you see what type of demand they are expecting during the holiday season? Having this conversation can help you forecast what type of strain it could have on your organization and even avoid it with the right preparations. Every season is different, but we all know it get’s busier. How much will depend on your clients or consumers. If you are used to hiring more you can probably expect the same this year but how much more are you hiring and is it enough, or perhaps too little? Make this forecasting process an annual process in your organization.
In the yard, it’s important to know how many trucks are coming and going and what the schedule looks like. Fortunately, YardView’s dock scheduling system solves all these problems and will ensure your organization is running at optimal speed.
4. Integrate internal systems such as ERP with transportation management platforms.
Integration is expected these days, it’s hard to imagine a successful supply chain without it. White boards, excel spreadsheets and manual data entry are outdated and messy. Integrating your yard management system with other transportation platforms or and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system such as SAP will keep everything together and accessible from the same platform.
YardView’s yard management system integrates will all systems, big or small so you don’t have to worry.
5. Connect with more carriers for more rate options.
Have you ever considered connecting with more carriers during this time? Sure it’s extra work and you’re already busy but is the additional rate options worth the time and potentially the money? If you truly don’t want or feel a need to connect with additional carriers, assess how well you are managing them and if there are opportunities for improvements.
Did you know YardView’s yard management software provides customer and carrier access? This will eliminate some of that management and reduce communications where unnecessary because they can access the information they need from anywhere.
If you are unfamiliar with what exactly a yard management system does, or not sure the full capabilities, let me give you a little more insight to help you understand and determine if you need one, or if your current system could use an upgrade.
Features of YardView’s yard management system include:
· Inventory visibility in real-time
· Yard driver management
· Gate management
· Dock scheduling and appointments
· Monitors and alerts
· 24/7 support team (think of them as an extension of your team)
· One platform for all information
· Data, analytics and KPI reporting
· Fast implementation and training
· Reduce unnecessary and costly detention or demurrage fees
· Increase trailer spot time
· Increase efficiencies in the yard
· Always know where trailers/containers are located
· No more forgetting with email or text alerts
· Eliminate wasted time logging into different platforms
YardView’s platform is the easiest YMS on the market today and the best cost. Request a demo to learn more about YardView and how we can help save you time and money this holiday season.