When it comes to handling inbound and inbound third party shipments, including excess baggage, unaccompanied luggage and parcels, groupage or consolidated container services, the main steps are the same around the world:
Upon arrival at a warehouse a loose loaded groupage container gets de-consolidated and in the process each individual shipment’s pieces get palletized or loose loaded into storage vaults.
Liftvans and pallets are put put away somewhere in a warehouse as is.
In some countries FCL containers have to be uploaded for quarantine inspection.
The shipment pieces get loaded to a delivery truck, which often times happens to be a third party trailer that serves a specific route and delivers multiple shipment along the way to its destination.
And finally the shipment is delivered at destination, often times by third party carrier.
The inventory control of these types of shipments is very challenging because unless two companies use the same digital inventory system and use barcoded labels that can be scanned, one has to rely on manual processes. When one looks at loose loaded consolidated shipments with not much to show for clear marking that helps separate the shipments, one understands that a probability of a human error is very high and so are the costs stemming from these mistakes.
How do we know all this? Because over the last 20 years we’ve heard many colourful stories about having to fetch a Chicago bound suitcase from San Francisco. Some of these movers have turned to Voxme to help set up a digital, barcode based inventory control system to help them be as efficient as possible given the increased volumes and shrinking profit margins.
In a nutshell what Voxme system does is mark and identify inbound shipment inventory pieces using barcodes. The key to success is to create a unique set of barcodes for a shipment and then us these barcodes for inventory completeness checkoff at all handling points. Here’s how it’s done:
Create a “blank” inventory for each inbound shipment based on the provided piece count. It’s “blank” because one doesn’t enter the content of each inventory piece - it’s irrelevant.
Dispatch inventory jobs to the warehouse tablets and smartphones - thats’ right, smartphones. No need to buy any special equipment.
Have inventory handlers to apply labels to the shipment pieces and check the off. If one manages to match piece numbers to the original ones, it’s even better, but it’s not a must. One can even capture photos of preexisting package damages to avoid disputes with the origin agent. The key element of this step is to make sure that all the pieces have been accounted for per the origin inentory.
Scanning pieces in a warehouse, be it onto pallets, storage vaults or oversized items areas and Printing full size pallet and storage labels.
Scanning inventory out of the warehouse to a delivery truck.
Scanning inventory on delivery. Third party drivers and even transferees can use the free Bingo app for quick and efficient scanning based checkoff.
Talk to us and we’ll help you add efficiency and control to your established paper based processes. That’s what we’ve been doing for the last 20 years.