At first glance furniture retailers, wine and spirits distributors, building supply companies, non-profits and delivery operations don’t appear to have much in common in regards to their day-to-day delivery and distribution operations.
One similarity is that a many of these companies have implemented the Warehouse on Wheels Portable Delivery and Distribution System by Demountable Concepts, Inc. to consolidate regional warehouses for a significant reduction in operating costs. Others have increased profitability by expanding into new markets without investing in additional facilities or real estate.
The Warehouse on Wheels System provides companies with a more efficient, lower cost truck-based alternative to regional warehouses and cross-docks. With the system, up to four demountable bodies are loaded with merchandise for a specific delivery route and line-hauled to a regional drop-yard on a specially equipped semi-trailer and demounted. Next, locally operated straight trucks mount the body that corresponds to their route and set out to deliver the goods. Empty bodies from the previous round of deliveries make the return-trip to the warehouse on the semi-trailer.
Wine, spirits and Red Bull® distributor, Olinger Distributing Company, recently replaced two of their three regional warehouses with the Warehouse on Wheels System in a consolidation of their Indiana operations. The capital freed-up by shuttering two warehouses was diverted to upgrade the material handling system at the remaining warehouse. In addition, centralizing inventory in one location has made it easier to manage the ever-changing and expanding number of SKUs the company distributes.
Olinger reports that the consolidation has facilitated a 20% growth in business with no increase in inventory costs. Out-of-stock orders have also been reduced by nearly half and fleet fuel expenses have been cut by 15%. Eric Lis, VP of Operations at Olinger Distributing Company sums up the positive result by saying, “Consolidating warehouses with the Warehouse on Wheels System drives improvement throughout the entire company by centralizing redundant functions.”
Cleveland, Ohio based Arhaus Furniture, one of the nation’s premier fine home furnishing retailers, implemented the Warehouse on Wheels System to expand their central warehouse’s deliverable territory to outlying markets in ten states. The system enabled Arhaus to avoid the expense of opening cross-dock facilities in their regional markets while it increased the productivity of their local delivery operations. Since pre-loaded bodies are picked-up a drop-yard, as opposed to loading trucks at a cross-dock, time spent loading and unloading has been eliminated so local drivers have more drive-time which results in more deliveries per day.
Arhaus Furniture’s Chief Logistics Officer, John Roddy credits Warehouse on Wheels with the positive result by saying, “Utilizing a demountable shuttle operation produced an annual savings of 30% over opening regional cross-dock facilities in our target markets”
Additional benefits the Warehouse on Wheels System provides businesses include more timely deployment into emerging markets because drop-yard locations are quicker and easier to implement and/or relocate than regional warehouses. Product damage and incorrect orders are reduced because inventory travels directly from the warehouse to the retailer/consumer in the same truck body, instead of being double-handled at a cross-dock. And, multiple bodies can be loaded quickly at the same loading bay due to walk through doors on the front and rear of each body.
Demountable Concepts, Inc., established in 1989, is North America’s premier manufacturer and supplier of the Warehouse on Wheels Portable Distribution System and Demountable Straight-Truck Delivery Systems. The system is available through most truck leasing companies and dealerships and the company has a North American network that provides installation onto new and existing trucks. Demountable Concepts also supplies truck body builders with the parts necessary to make bodies interchangeable.