West Coast and California Logistics Blog

Handling your Supply Chain this Holiday Season

Posted by David Hooper on Fri, Dec 02, 2016 @ 03:56 PM

Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the holiday season are critical periods for many companies. For both brick-and-mortar retailers and online merchants, the holidays may be the year's peak sales period, representing in excess of 50% of their annual business. With so much on the line, it is critical to be prepared.

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Tags: Supply Chain, Holiday

Different Generations, One Goal

Posted by Josue Gonzalez on Wed, Nov 23, 2016 @ 02:28 PM

As a company grows, so does its need for new talent, and in today’s workforce there are several generations to choose from. One can select from the well-seasoned Baby Boomer to the green bushytailed Millennials, each with their own strengths. Figuring out the correct balance for a company can be a challenge and takes some understanding of where the company stands in its development. All customers, regardless of their respective generations, are looking for the same things from a 3PL: timely communication, meeting delivery times, and avoiding additional cost. 

Keep in mind the following when dealing with different generations.  

  • Be aware of preferred work styles: Boomers tend to prefer detailed instruction and guidance while Gen X and Millennials work better on teams.
  • Adopting effective communication: This is key for effective and timely communication. Understanding the preferred method of communicating that a customer wants can alleviate communication barriers. For Veterans and Boomers a fixed hour work week can mean they are not reachable after a certain time as they typically prefer a phone call or personal conversation. Millennials, on the other hand, have communicated via technology all their lives, and are continuously connected and readily available as such -- a text message later in the evening many not be intruding.  
  • -Identifying the most successful feedback techniques: Understanding how the generations view feedback can help avoid pestering clients with hourly updates, or on the flip side, worrying them with minimal updates. Developing a relationship with customers can lead to a clearer and tailored feedback channel. A “No news is good news,” approach may suit a Boomer client, but the same approach would not be suitable for a connected Millennials utilizing live feed software.
  • Recognize the different reactions to conflict: Avoiding conflict should be a primary goal in every customer relationship. However, when problems occur, understanding what approach a customer will take can expedite solutions. Whether the customer expresses their concerns via a corporate hierarchy as a sign of respect as is frequent with Boomers, or take an immediate and direct approach as is seen in Gen Y, they are both looking for relief. With this understanding one can present solutions to the right parties or teams both timely and directly, making best use of everyone’s time.
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Tags: Management, Leadership

Understanding Warehouse Insurance and Liability

Posted by Bob Lilja on Fri, Nov 18, 2016 @ 03:18 PM

Your products are the life blood of your business. Their secure movement through the supply chain, from manufacturing point to final delivery to your customer, is critical to your success.

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Tags: Logistics, Insurance, Liability, Warehouse

Driving Dissent

Posted by Steve Buckman on Thu, Nov 10, 2016 @ 09:46 AM

We all face the drive to “get it done” and usually it means “get it done right now!”  But sometimes in the rush to mark the next item off our “to do” lists, we stop listening. We stop engaging our partners – and we stop listening to constructive dissent which is often the last best defense we have against really getting it wrong!

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Tags: Team Building, Management, Communication

The Advantages of a 3PL with blended Asset/Non-Asset Based Transportation Services

Posted by Johnny Kim on Thu, Nov 03, 2016 @ 07:04 AM

There are many transportation services to choose from when deciding which one is the right fit for your business.  A company with robust assets – a fleet of actual trucks providing service – paired with a strong network of carrier partners (brokerage) is able to provide a comprehensive, cost-effective transportation solution that may well be the best fit for your needs.

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Tags: Transportation, Distribution

An Introduction to EDI

Posted by Richard Grennon on Tue, Oct 25, 2016 @ 07:30 AM

What is EDI?  EDI is an acronym for Electronic Data Interchange and is commonly defined as: an electronic communication method that provides standards for exchanging data via electronic means without human intervention. 

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Tags: Logistics Technology, Electronic Data Interchange

How to Get a Good 3PL Solution

Posted by Arlene Slivka on Thu, Oct 06, 2016 @ 12:34 PM

You realize that partnering with a 3PL service provider can save you money and expand your capabilities.  Yes! Good idea!  Partnering with a 3PL is a smart option to take your business to the next level with a variable cost structure, flexible capacity along with technology and expertise to improve your supply chain.  What are some keys to get the solution you need? 

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Tags: 3PL, Pricing, Solution

Why Utilizing a 3PL is Cost Effective

Posted by Brad Dixon on Thu, Sep 29, 2016 @ 02:36 PM

In today’s growing e-commerce world, online businesses are in a position to optimize their operations that will fuel growth, because they are able to focus on a single product-to-consumer distribution channel.  Many of the technical aspects of e-commerce business such as social marketing, website design and content management continue to be executed by in-house staff. These functions are crucial and have to be in house as they are the foundation of growing startups and online business. But when it comes to the operational and logistics aspect of the business, adding on an outside partner that has the knowledge and expertise to optimize your supply chain could provide great value.

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Tags: 3PL Outsourcing, eCommerce Fulfillment, Direct to Consumer

5 Ways to Effectively Communicate with Customers

Posted by Thelma Leon on Thu, Sep 22, 2016 @ 12:54 PM

Communication is vital to any business operations but in supply chain it is critical for everyday success. A slip in communication can cause major problems and huge losses down the road. These are the 5 ways to effectively communicate:

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Tags: Productivity, Management, Communication

4 Mistakes to Avoid This Holiday Season

Posted by Tina Truong on Fri, Sep 16, 2016 @ 04:24 PM

For many retailers, the holiday season is the biggest and busiest season of the year. Some companies report that up to 40% of their total revenue comes from the holidays alone. Mistakes during this time are costly, especially because there is a very short window of time to make corrections and recoup losses. Below are four mistakes to avoid this holiday season:

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Tags: Supply Chain, Holiday, retail

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