People’s plans, mostly those on inbound logistics, almost always experience some mishaps go wrong. Even the most competent shippers are affected by the problems that come with shipping, such as loss, claims or damage.
These problems may lead to your company incurring higher transport expenses, but that is not all. They may lead to a bad relationship with your partners; shipping companies such as DHL. However, you can do something for these problems to be prevented.
You need to ensure you have a good relationship with the transporters and suppliers. This way, you experience a smoother process when packing and transporting and delivering the shipment. The goods are delivered safely and on time.
To avoid damage on transit or claims, you should take these steps:
The vendor should carefully prepare the shipment. It is important to follow all the instructions. Also, the suppliers should be supervised regularly to ensure the goods are packed properly.
Important things to inspect include:
Pack your goods in containers that suit them. Take note of the maximum weight that the container can hold, as indicated in the Certificate of the Box Maker. Do not exceed that weight.
Use boxes and containers that are spacious enough for cushioning the goods on each side. Ensure they are rigid and intact, without tears, punctures corner damage or rips. The flaps too must be intact.
Wrap each item separately before packing. Keep a safe distance between delicate items and keep them away from sides and corners of the container. Keep glass items separate from each other and from other items using oft, protective wrapping. Use appropriate cushioning material along with a strong cover.
Band and close the container properly for better cushioning. Tightly close boxes with a strong tape e.g. water-activated, reinforced water-activated or pressure-sensitive tapes. They should not be less than 2 inches wide. Avoid string, paper wrap, cello tape and masking tape.
2. Shipment Labeling
Label the goods to deliver them to the right buyer. Follow the following instructions:
Cover completely or remove old labels.
Place the labels on the box’s top part.
Do not use more than one label.
Avoid placing the label on the seal or closure.
Duplicate the label and put the copy inside the pack for additional security.
Ensure you can find a full address in case of return on the label.
The changing of possession is a crucial process in logistics. Even more important, is the moment when the shipment is delivered. You should ensure your employees are well trained and qualified to inspect the shipment thoroughly.
Compare each shipment either to the truck bill or air bill. Check if it accounts for the right number of packs, if there are any damages or if there are broken seals. In addition, confirm that all the contents of the packs are accounted for. Above all, make sure the people inspecting the freight are thorough, before authorizing the shipment.
You need to ensure there is proper transportation and storage of your shipment. Follow the instructions on the special labels on how to handle the goods, and how to palletize and stack them, if they have been unpacked.
You need to come up with a qualified team for managing the whole process. This way, you can ensure there are minimal damage and losses. Also use reference guides and manuals to do everything right.
The Carrier/ Transporter
Probably, the best way to prevent claims and damages is through finding a trustworthy carrier. Ensure the carrier’s vehicle is regularly inspected. You can tell a lot about how a carrier will perform from observing the vehicle’s state. You should also inspect the facility in which your carrier operates. This way, you can see for yourself how the carrier handles shipment.
Ask yourself these questions before you settle on a carrier:
Is the carrier keen on the background of the employees in sensitive departments?
How many claims have been made lately?
Does it follow such standards of quality as ISO9000?
How is transportation of cargo done in its facility?
Does the carrier have a safe facility?
Are the receiving and shipping areas separate, for better security?
Does the carrier have current equipment?
Are there any dock checks done?
Does the carrier have T.A.P.A. approval?
It is very important that claims, damage and loss are managed, as part of a comprehensive program of logistics. One method of managing loss is preparing the shipment properly. You should also relate well with your transport partners and suppliers in order to achieve timely, cost-effective and safe delivery of goods. Always have in mind that prevention is better than cure.
Edward C. Jackson
Lynelle B. Hooper
SAS Overseas Shipping