For decades there’s been two competing methods for making furniture home deliveries in markets 150 to 300 miles from a distribution center. Cross Docking or Warehouse on Wheels. For each, let’s examine the number of times furniture is touched during deliveries made in a remote market consisting of two routes.
Cross-Docking:Furniture is touched four times. First, when the furniture is loaded into the trailer at the distribution center and hauled to the remote cross dock facility. There, warehouse staff touch it twice more, once unloading from the trailer and and once loading it into delivery trucks. The fourth and final touch is when the delivery team unloads the furniture at the customer’s home.
Warehouse on Wheels: Two times. Once when furniture is loaded into two Demountable containers that are shuttled to the market together on a trailer, where each container is transferred to a straight truck chassis. And once more when the furniture is unloaded at the customer’s home. Warehouse on Wheels requires 50% fewer touches to get to the point of delivery than cross-docking.
We all hope things will return to normal soon. A cure will return us to a time when managing virus protection and its costs during the furniture home delivery cycle gets pushed down on the priority list. Right now though, fewer touches means less spent on cleaning supplies, personal protection equipment (PPE), and added labor so employees can maintain the recommended levels of sanitation and distance. In customers’ minds, the perception of safety during delivery will play a big role in who they chose to purchase from well into the future. A Warehouse on Wheels delivery lets you reassure them you’re working smart to keep them safe as possible.
Along with the simplicity of only needing virus protection procedures in place at the distribution center and home delivery, Warehouse on Wheels offers a host of long-term benefits unrelated to Covid-19. Bypassing the cross dock greatly reduces costs and cuts time out of the delivery cycle. Furniture goes from distribution center to the customer’s home untouched so you have better control over what’s on the truck. Trucks with preloaded containers can also depart for their first appointment earlier and have time to make more deliveries per shift.
Owning the final-mile is especially important during the Covid-19 era. It’s hard to force independent contractors and 3PL’s to follow the health and safety guidelines your company has spent the time, effort, and expense to put in place. Warehouse on Wheels puts you in control because furniture remains sealed in the container from distribution center though delivery. Delivery drivers aren’t required to load their own trucks so even if you use independent contractors for delivery, you can guarantee that the product is safe and clean when it arrives at the home.
Please contact us for all you need to know about superior home furniture delivery or watch this online webinar.
Protocols and mandates seem to be continually changing, but the best thing to do is make it as safe as possible for workers and customers. This link provides the CDC guideline for cleaning and disinfecting buildings.