These items are costly – very costly if they are lost or stolen – and are often hostage to a supply chain geared only for forward logistics.
These items of distribution – vital for the efficient and safe delivery of the products they contain – need to come backwards through the chain in order to be re-used.
Supply chains may be well tuned to distribute goods from multiple sites to even more sites, but often they cannot cope with the repatriation of transit packaging.
There are many tracking system on the market that can claim to provide the solution. Most of these tend to be driven either by antiquated administration at one end of the scale to sophisticated technical wizardry at the other. The latter often claim to be able to track this equipment in real time. This misses the point.
Real Time is Too Late!
There are two types of tracking, one is asset management – determining where assets are at any given time. This can be done retrospectively. If need be, it can be done purely on paper. This requires no expert knowledge apart from how to design and print forms and/or write a count ’em in, count ’em out computer system. Many companies have paid fortunes for this very basic service.
The other type is strategic planning – a rare thing when it comes to reverse logistics. Knowing where empty pallets, dollies crates, drums etc will be this time tomorrow, next week, and even next year makes the difference between continually purchasing more of this expensive kit, and efficiently managing with what you already have.
We use very sophisticated technology coupled with logistics experience to come up with the right bespoke package. Oh, and it MUST be bespoke. Any company that wants you to fit into their system probably will not provide you with the right result.
You will need to sew in the know how and experience of staff already in the supply chain. They are not there just to operate the system – they ARE the system. Imposition of a new system, especially one brought in by an outside company, doesn’t work. Co-operation and flexibility are the key to success.
- Loose equipment transit packaging in the right place at the right time
- Pro-action rather than re-action