Warehouses occupy some of America’s largest covered square footage and yet they are not all full yet driving along an interstate it is not uncommon to see more and more warehouses being built. Much depends upon the contracts the warehouse has, its link to a particular manufacturer or distributor, location, access, and availability. All of these factors combine to help or hurt a warehouse that isn’t seriously considering them in terms of the services they offer. One of the most recent avenues of revenue for the warehousing industry involves cross-docking. The speed and productivity of a supply chain are vital for the shipping industry and manufacturers. Cross-docking is a strategy that can help companies gain an advantage in the very competitive field of logistics.
Logistics are the lifeblood of the shipping and warehouse industry. Time is everything for these mutually beneficial and interdependent industries. When a shipment is delayed or refused it can cause havoc for both shipper and customer. Loads can be refused for a variety of reasons. A load can shift in transport and compromise one or more pallets in the process. The customer can refuse to accept the load if a pallet is compromised. A driver can be too early or too late for delivery and need to find a solution to allow he/her to keep rolling and delivering products with the goal of getting the original shipment to the customer in acceptable terms.
Dock scheduling is critical and if a truck misses it’s scheduled appointment it creates a snag for trucks on the schedule in the same time period. A driver can experience “detention fees” for missing an appointment. Typically, after two hours the receiver of goods is responsible to pay a specified amount per hour to keep the truck in sight. If a truck is late for it’s scheduled to dock appointment they won’t touch it because it will upend the entire schedule. Meanwhile, the shipper expects the truck to drop its load on time and get on to the next pickup. Failing to do so costs precious time and money.
Cross-docking is a logistic practice where products from a supplier or manufacturer are distributed straight to the customer, retail chain, or point of sale/supply with marginal to no handling or storage time. Through cross-docking warehouses receive products through an inbound dock and then transfer them to an outbound transportation dock at the appropriate time.
The warehouse industry has developed a solution that benefits the producer/manufacturer, shipper, and customer. Cross-docking offers the opportunity for quick turnaround and instead of designated docks, multiple docks are used to accommodate these shifts in schedule.
Cross-docking allows the driver a solution for the load in question. The driver can offload at the warehouse for a short time, resume their schedule, and return to pick up and deliver the goods to the original destination on schedule. The warehouse can temporarily store the goods and re-pallet any compromised pallets so it’s ready to go when the new pickup schedule is set. The warehouse is fulfilling a vital role in holding the goods and palletizing as necessary so the goods are ready to be loaded for redelivery and minimal downtime or loss to the shipper. Time is saved because the truck doesn’t have to return the goods to the point of origination and start over with another load. The truck can make pickups and delivery until the dock appointment is set for the original goods.
Cross-docking warehouses are prepared to keep goods until the original shipper can reschedule delivery. The warehouse performs a vital service by holding the goods until they are ready to be shipped out again. The goods or load is fully secure in the cross-docking warehouse and will be ready to ship on time.
Not every warehouse is attuned and ready to receive cross-docking goods or loads. Gateway Warehouse in Spartanburg is ready to receive loads and familiar with cross-docking. We have options for clients and understand their unique needs in the shipping conundrum. Contact us today about your cross-docking needs, or situations. We provide solutions.
Gateway Warehouse and Distribution is a public warehouse providing a custom solution to each of its unique client’s needs. These needs can range from basic warehouse storage, pick and pull items, cross-docking, and inventory management.
Lee Thompson, General Manager
325 Wingo Heights Road
Spartanburg, SC 29303
Phone: (864) 582-6307
Fax: (864) 585-2717