Good Products Are Overshadowed by Inefficient Distribution Systems

While there’s no denying that the concept of marginal utility and investing in a unique selling proposition are fundamental principles that drive the success of a startup, business management is far more complex than just having the best offer available. As a result, regardless of how innovative and the limitless potential a product or service may have, its features are often overshadowed by bad management and logistics to reach the customer, most especially an inefficient distribution system.

What’s worse, these logistics issues have not only become rampant as of late, but they’ve grown increasingly challenging to address due to the Covid-19 global pandemic still causing supply chain chaos across all industries up until today. And so, to help raise awareness and provide a basic overview on how to resolve these problems, we’ll be going over critical areas of a distribution system that are often compromised or carry overlooked weak points.

Explore Weaknesses In Storage And Handling

Firstly, there’s no better place to start than by exploring and identifying possible weaknesses in your warehouses and storage depots because the handling of raw materials and finished goods is often riddled with unnecessary factory overhead. Remember, these assets are the bread and butter of your company, and if you can overcome the associated shortfalls to storage and handling, you can cut down costs significantly and improve the supply chain process. 

  • Invest In Proper Equipment And Skills Training: Many companies are guilty of holding onto equipment made obsolete by recent innovations and failure to allocate sufficient funds for skills training. And if you belong to the same category, then we strongly recommend that you redirect your budget allocation to purchase better equipment and to provide the related handling seminars for your employees. This decision will allow your warehouses to work a lot faster and help employees cut back on any wasted time.
  • Enable Successful Returns Management: E-commerce has shot up in popularity since the beginning of 2020. Because it shows no signs of stopping and continues to accumulate a larger portion of retail sales, it means that companies should also invest in its reverse, a successful returns management system. Any professional logistics consulting company will vouch for the growing need for efficient reverse supply chains in storage depots because handling defects and returns will cut costs and introduce savings that can be recycled or sold down the line.
  • Contingency Plans And Control Procedures: Anything and everything can happen. Because the practice of prudence is a business principle every company should uphold, it’s only natural that you must also have contingency plans and control procedures in place for storage and handling. Disaster can strike at any time, and we must be prepared for the risk of restrictions to get tighter if the need arises because it’s far better to have a response in place than to be caught empty-handed.

Double-Checking Transportation And Delivery

Secondly, once you’ve covered your bases for storage and handling, we strongly recommend double-checking the step that comes after, which is transportation and delivery of the finished goods and products. Of course, we won’t dismiss that current supply chain restrictions make it impossible to attain the same speed as pre-pandemic levels, but we also shouldn’t use that as an excuse not to try. So try to identify weak points here as well. 

  • Proper Load Planning: An excellent way to counteract an inefficient distribution system is proper load planning, which will help cut back on time wasted taking longer stretches of dead travel and replacing it with active and adjacent orders. For example, your delivery trucks and personnel can work on a flexible route optimized system, which will ensure that their entire round trip from the farthest destination back to the storage depot is used efficiently.
  • Real-Time Tracking Of Deliveries: If you don’t already have a method of tracking orders efficiently, we strongly suggest that you implement real-time tracking on your deliveries to keep both the management posted on the progress and update customers on their parcels. Not only will this allow customers to feel informed and empowered, but drivers can highlight high-traffic zones that other delivery trucks should avoid to cut back on travel time.
  • Opportunity To Outsource Delivery Services: Last but not least, if you’re struggling with costs to keep delivery in-house, then don’t forget about the opportunity to outsource delivery services to another company. Not all startups and small businesses have the luxury to support in-house delivery, and having someone else handle the trouble will save you the time and investment to accomplish the same quality. Outsourcing also offers long-term scalability, which frees up more of your resources for other facets of the supply chain.

Don’t Let Logistics Hold Your Business Back.

In conclusion, logistics should be the last thing to hold your business back, so don’t let any of the factors mentioned above slip past your grasp. Far too many startups don’t last to see their lucky break because of an inefficient distribution, so don’t let yours be another story in this category as well. 

Meta title: Inefficient Distribution Systems Undermine Consumer Confidence
meta desc: Companies always rush to innovate on their unique selling proposition, but what many startups fail to notice is that regardless of product quality, its features will be overshadowed by inefficient distribution. Keep reading and learn how your company can address inefficient distribution systems.

Rylie Holt