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Showing posts from 2017

Delivering the Difficult

The On Demand Economy is starting to bring about big changes in the logistics landscape. The "Uberization of Freight" and the rush to digitizing and automating all facets of the distribution process has seen a multitude of new companies enter our field.
A large amount of investment capital has been put into even the smallest of technology companies, with no logistics experience, in hopes of creating the next big application for Logistics managers to use. We can credit Amazon for this.
All eyes are on Amazon as they have transitioned from an online bookseller, to an online marketplace of everything, to a global logistics company. "The Amazon Affect" has changed the perception of the distribution and logistics world.
In my 30 years in logistics, no matter the organization, warehousing and transportation has always been a back end function. These services have always been regarded as "support" services for sales. Amazon came along and moved logistics front …

Is your SMB shipping process at risk from 3PL systems mergers?

If you are a small to medium sized business that sells or distributes products, you have most likely heard of Unishippers and Worldwide Express, the 3PL parcel and freight rate re sellers. They both offer discounted shipping rates through their online shipping systems (TMS) and both offer multiple shipping service coverage ranging from parcel all the way up to truckload.
For the years I spent managing distribution and supply chains I probably had the privilege of meeting dozens of representatives from both of these companies. Each one offering me better rates or better services than the other. At times, I utilized their shipping systems to my companies advantage. 
When I learned that Worldwide Express and UniShippers were merging I couldn't help but recall the countless times the reps would question the others system, process or service offering. Most of this was to try to gain my shipping volume, I understand that, but sometimes it even turned personal, one agent despising the o…

You won your Online Auction? Now What?

Gateway Crate and Freight gets a lot of work from people who win online auctions from out of town. Most of these people are out of state and some are even in other countries. We have picked up auction items such as antiques, restaurant equipment, computers, water meter readers, and even a walk through metal detector.
Many of our clients do their due diligence BEFORE bidding or purchasing items they may win. Contacting us for a quote on picking up, packing, palletizing, crating and shipping these items gives the prospective buyer a good idea about how much of a "deal" they are actually getting after factoring in packing and transportation.
Those that buy first and figure out logistics later find out that the road to great deals online starts with understanding the costs of the entire project, not just the purchase price of the item. Lets look at a recent Gateway Crate and Freight auction purchase project.

A Security company in Baltimore, Maryland won an online auction for a …

Logistics and a lot of T.L.A

TLA? On Valentines Day? Isn't it TLC (Tender Loving Care)? TLC is a TLA...or is that TMI (Too Much Information)? LOL. The world is full of T.L.As (Three Letter Acronyms) and logistics loves using them.
I analyzed my last 6 blogs to find out that I used 19 Three Letter Acronyms! Ready for them? Lets go...COI, CES, COO, EXW, FCA, CPT, CIP, DAT, DAP, DDP, FAS, CIF, UPS, LTL, TMS, WMS, VCI and CFR twice in 2 different ways CFR meaning Cost and Freight (Incoterm) and CFR meaning Code of Federal Regulations.
Some of the above acronyms don't relate exactly to Logistics, CES for example is the acronym for the Consumer Electronics Show. I wrote about CES in my Trade Show blog. Other acronyms are high profile brands in the industry like UPS, which we all know stands for United Parcel Service.
In my new blog we will be adding 2 more 3 letter acronyms. API and EDI. Both of these acronyms are services that are not dependent on logistics but these days logistics is dependent upon them.

Does your delivery need a C.O.I?

In the Transportation Logistics world insurance is required for pretty much everything. General Liability, Motor Truck, Contingent Cargo and Marine Cargo as well as coverage's like Errors and Omissions and Workman's Compensation. You would think by needing all this coverage that moving cargo around the world and into someones business or their home is a pretty risky endeavor. It is!
Gateway O.T performs Inside and White Glove delivery services where the building owner or management company requires us to prove we have sufficient insurance coverage while in or on their property. Our Crate and Freight division performs on site packing and crating services for large corporations that require we meet their minimum insurance requirements before we enter their property.
Large corporations carry many insurances but have to minimize their risk of claims against those policies by ensuring that the outside contractors they utilize have the coverage needed in case of an accident while o…