Fueled by changing shopping preferences, expedited service expectations, and demographics, Ecommerce companies are rewriting the playbook on how, and when, online orders reach customers. For retailers who feel like they need to play catch up in order to compete, there’s still time to gain velocity and create a thriving shipping operation in a shortened timeframe.
The Commercial Real Estate Development Association says Ecommerce companies are in a big hurry to begin operating smaller infill centers. According to Lawrence R. Armstrong, CEO of International Design Firm, Ware Malcomb, “We are doing a lot of work on functionally obsolete industrial buildings right now because the Ecommerce people cannot wait for us to design [and construct] new buildings.”
For shipping & logistics executives looking to compete amongst fast-paced models such as Amazon’s 1-hour delivery, and Target’s next day re-stock initiative, here’s how to accelerate your timeline: a) during the search for distribution and in-fill facilities, b) by quickly getting operations up and running, and c) increasing the speed of loading and unloading.
Avoidable Set-Backs: Working with architects, obtaining building permits, and even concrete curing requirements can delay your move-in by weeks or even months. Anticipate these items and select alternatives to office buildouts and concrete construction such as fabric walls and portable mezzanines to make up time.
Shorten the Search: Select the best building to support your business strategy and customer needs. Ideal for the changing demands of Ecommerce, modular loading configurations make it possible to create loading areas anywhere on property and can be re-configured if the business priorities change.
Move It: From modular office spaces to modular loading docks, this portable, relocatable equipment will arrive in less than 8 weeks and requires little to no installation.
Thumbs Down to Hands-On: While having employees unload manually using carts and dollies seems like one of the fastest ways to get up and running ASAP, it’s actually one of the slowest. By comparison, unloading trailers using a forklift and yard ramp increases productivity by 90%.
Automate: Improve existing or portable loading docks with best-in-class products that can translate to efficiency, such as hydraulic dock levelers, push button operation, and automatic vehicle restraints. These products intuitively deliver smooth forklift transition between building and trailer bed and keep trailers steadfast during loading so your employees can operate confidently and more quickly.
Stay Safe, Keep Moving: Nothing can bring loading operations to a grinding halt more quickly than an employee accident. Working against tight deadlines can sometimes impact safety decisions, so a review of the OSHA standards or IBC codes can help ensure employee needs are prioritized.