GEODIS has been utilizing a Retail Consolidation Services (RCS) program for several years now, boasting excellent On-Time In-Full (OTIF) scores as well as maintaining great relationships with both customers and retailers.

We find that the number one takeaway from having an RCS program with such quality retail relationships and superb OTIF scores is that consistency is key. Consistently making deliveries and meeting retail expectations can be tough in this environment. However, consistency is essential to maintain shelf space, keep your product on the shelf, and grow your brand.

GEODIS has a heavy presence in the South and East but realized that we needed a way to ship to the major retailers on the West Coast at a lower cost. We also found that current methods had too many touches and chances of orders being short. Standard LTL was also unreliable in meeting OTIF guidelines. So, we came up with a West Coast RCS program that resolves those problems.

Below is a breakdown of issues faced with West Coast shipping and how our West Coast RCS program alleviates them.

The West Coast LTL market

When moving product with LTL — especially long haul — the product will ship, make pick up, and arrive at the origin terminal hoping to make line haul the same night. If it doesn’t make line haul, it gets delayed and doesn’t leave until the next day.

Once product is shipped on an LTL carrier, there is rarely a direct route to the end terminal. There are multiple stops with the freight getting unloaded from one LTL trailer to another, perhaps combined with other freight at a break terminal, and then it continues on to its destination.

This could happen multiple times on the way to its destination, causing many touches and increasing chances of mistakes, damages, and things going missing. Maximizing transportation efficiency often begs the question, “What’s the best direct route that will also minimize any risk of damage?”

While in transit from terminal to terminal, there are also many chances for delays. There could be traffic or the driver running out of hours. In a world of Just-in-Time (JIT) shipping, there are so many opportunities for things to go wrong and incur delays.

Once product gets to the destination terminal — that is, if it makes it on time — it must appoint on the spot to make the Must Arrive By Date (MABD). Often, with traditional LTL, there will be a specific date set in the transportation management system (TMS). If delayed and it misses the delivery day, there will be nothing available when it goes to appoint, since you cannot appoint until arrival at the destination terminal.

West Coast RCS can help with your OTIF issues

Creating a cost-saving West Coast RCS program

Taking the LTL market’s issues into account, GEODIS created a program that offers cost savings with less transit and touches as well as other opportunities for things to go wrong. Any order that comes to us for the West Coast RCS program to go into the pool, we start looking for opportunities in advance to make sure the MABD times align with very little chance of delays.

Our carriers ensure that with our planning, all product will get to the designated retailers without issue. We are also able to prioritize which shipments to appoint first to ensure all time-sensitive needs are met. This enables a lot more control in ensuring OTIF shipments to retailers in our West Coast pool than a standard LTL service.

In addition, with our West Coast RCS program, customers only pay for the cost from our carrier in Southern California to the final mile (often in California) and a portion of the shuttle cost. This results in significant cost savings compared to LTL shipments (often a 5% to 10% savings per shipment).

In conclusion, utilizing a West Coast RCS program reduces damages and touches, as it’s a much more direct route without as many stops and breakpoints as standard LTL. Using these methods, GEODIS can consistently get your product on the shelves in a timely fashion while offering much more flexibility and reliability.

Our West Coast carriers currently cover California, Arizona, and Nevada. We also currently deliver to 56 retailers, including Save Mart Supermarkets, Safeway, Albertsons, Rite Aid, Target, CVS, and more. For more information, please contact us here.

 

Author: Evan Glick

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