Fall 2014 Edition

  • Building supply chain solutions from the ground up

Building Supply Chain Solutions from the Ground up

You need totally reliable, accurate and robust software and supply chain systems to run a successful business and keep your customers happy.

But if these things go wrong you can lose money and market share - fast.

That's the moment when you should contact our experts at FedEx SupplyChain. We can provide you with one-stop, practical solutions to all your logistics challenges. And that means you can concentrate on your core skills to really get ahead with your business development plans.

Understanding the challenge
Here's a true life example of how we've successfully helped a customer free itself of complex operating problems and get on with building their sales and market share.

We were approached by a firm which provides Inventory Data solutions for many international businesses. Creating the tools to gather accurate and timely data is essential for such companies. It's crucial that the high-end scanners provided by our customer to their clients to collect all required information (product codes, receipts, inventory, deliveries, returns etc.) are always correctly programmed and ready for use at the right time and location.

Detailed discussions with our customer revealed that they were experiencing serious and costly problems. Scanners were being loaded with the wrong software, and this was resulting in the need to organise the return, " cleaning " and reprogramming of entire pallets of trays for use in each individual site in each different country. As a consequence, end-customer staff were missing their schedules, valuable reporting time was being lost, and significant time and cost penalties were being incurred.

Additional hurdles faced by the company included the need to clear goods from China and the US through customs before programming could commence and to provide rapid deliveries to multiple locations to meet changing market needs.

Discovering the solution
The in-depth investigation and analysis carried out by our FedEx SupplyChain team led us to propose an integrated logistics and business management package. This involved not only country-by-country and site-by-site programming services but also a range of flexible, scalable complementary services. The solution included the following features, all of which were accepted by our customer:

  • Scanner programming and distribution - these operations were outsourced to FedEx SupplyChain to take advantage of our logistics planning and management systems and flexible staff resources. This enabled us to handle the timely programming, assembly and delivery of all required goods during seasonal business peaks and troughs both efficiently and cost-effectively. The FedEx SupplyChain team also put in detailed control mechanisms to minimise the danger, costs and time involved in handling recalls and reprogramming;
  • Scanner configuration - a dedicated room was established at the FedEx European Distribution Centre in the Netherlands with more than 300 software programmes permanently online, allowing customer data to be verified and each device accurately loaded according to precise step-by-step procedures;
  • Intelligent kitting - each scanner is now placed in a specially designed moulded tray to ensure that no cabling, batteries, instruction booklets etc. are missing before it joins others on a pallet, each of which is then re-checked against the country code and site numbers before being sealed and dispatched;
  • Centralised distribution - this is also now managed by our European Distribution Centre, using FedEx Express as well as other carriers. The entire delivery process benefits from integrated minimum-cost strategies, including customs clearance for countries both in and outside the European Union;
  • Returns management - FedEx now handles all of this. We also record all outbound activity, as what goes out defines what may need to be collected for return after an appropriate time. The cost of returns has been minimised because we now inspect every scanner immediately on collection to check for damage, upload or download data, recharge or replace batteries, and then sanitise it before return to stock. In addition we provide full 24/7 visibility on the status of each return via a customised web portal, plus tailored reports on e.g. customs delays, a site’s failure to finish on time, and when and where devices have gone missing or have been incorrectly used.

A highly successful outcome
Working with FedEx SupplyChain our customer now enjoys:

  • the benefit of dealing with one single interface, based in one specific location in the Netherlands, that provides a fully integrated pan-European logistics operation with full global control and visibility;
  • a dedicated, skilled team ready to listen to, understand and respond to their particular needs, backed up by state-of-the-art IT expertise and resources;
  • significant geographical, logistical and fiscal advantages;
  • reduced costs;
  • increased customer satisfaction;
  • enhanced competitivity and sales growth.

The benefits of using FedEx SupplyChain
Our experts listen carefully to what you say, and always take the time, trouble and effort to understand every aspect of your business. That way we ensure you always enjoy an effective and productive response to your needs and get results that exceed your expectations.

That's why going the extra mile for you is the rule and not the exception at FedEx. Our team members all around the world are ready to help you at any time you want, backed up by our fully integrated global transportation and information network. And that means FedEx SupplyChain can help turn your logistics management into a competitive strategy - because you can then focus on your core competencies and business development plans, reduce your costs and keep your customers happy.

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