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Managing a logistics operation isn’t easy, whether it’s a multinational chain of supply or a few delivery vans fulfilling orders for a small-scale ecommerce site. Knowing your stuff is vital for the success of such an operation, so the experts at Kendon Packaging are offering up some things that every logistics manager needs to understand.

Know your packaging

If a product gets to the customer in a sorry state, then in the most simple terms, your logistics chain has failed to adequately protect the product. In some cases, this is down to staff error, but more often than not, it comes down to improper packaging that doesn’t serve the product well.

If you’re shipping ceramics in a box without void fill, or electronics in a package without adequate antistatic packaging, you’re setting yourself up to fail. Always make sure your packaging is on point before expanding your logistics operation, as it could lead to large-scale disaster if a functional best practice isn’t adhered to.

Make sure you’re fuel efficient

As any large-scale delivery or logistics company knows, fuel costs can be a major strain on the balance sheet – but making small changes to increase fuel efficiency is easier than you might think. A simple aerodynamic upgrade to a lorry can lead to a massive decrease in fuel used, which can be an important stepping stone to a more futuristic solution like electric-powered vehicles.

Efficiency can be found in other departments, too. Try switching to energy-efficient light bulbs in the warehouse and opt for equipment that uses less energy, and you might see your financial situation loosen a little.

Organise your warehouse

A seamless warehouse-to-door delivery process depends on a number of things, but one aspect stands out above all others – organisation. Making sure your warehouse is just as slick as those used by web giants such as Amazon and other ecommerce retailers is a matter of perseverance – you won’t be able to revolutionise everything in a few days.

Start by having an audit of all practices in your fulfilment chain – only then can you identify areas where you can improve, then put them into action. Make sure everything is adequately palletised for ease of delivery into HGVs, and you’ll soon be on your way to an improved business model.

Know what you can (and can’t) do

Not biting off more than you can chew is an important business maxim no matter what sector you’re in. For logistics, this is especially true – as trying to compete with the big dogs in the industry will leave your business left by the wayside in an ultra-competitive market.

Growing such an unwieldy, complex business like a logistics company has to be a steady process, focused on reasonable long-term goals. There’s no use in launching a new business plan with little to no foresight, as this will more than likely end in failure.

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Whatever your company specialises in, keeping an eye on these four criteria will help steady your hand on the tiller as you steer your business through the choppy seas of success.