Deliveries keep your business running. Without the ability to receive and send materials, supplies and products, core functions would quickly become compromised. But the seamless flow of goods and services, your business will thrive.
Despite accounting for only 5% of all business premises in the UK, the transport and storage sector has grown by at least 88% since 2011. There’s no better time to enhance your business strategy and include logistics too.
Across internal and external distribution chains, operating in this vital train means your business becomes a provider over wider networks. Whether you’re only just starting out or you’ve added a new fleet this year, it’s always worth knowing how to enhance your logistical strategy.
Why are logistics so critical?
Accurate and timely delivery of all goods will be key to your success. Whether you want to operate as a third-party logistics provider or a key B2B regional resource, you need to focus on efficiency if you’re serious about making logistics work for your company.
When it comes to perfecting internal logistics, getting it right is still important. You don’t need to be providing the service for it to make a difference to your customer satisfaction, either. And since only 9% of UK companies feel very confident that their logistics supplier offers the best deal, there’s always a chance to improve things when you create new teams and strategies.
How should businesses improve logistics efficiencies?
- Use advanced logistics software
Planning and paperwork can delay projects and postpone deliveries too. Automated logistics software not only saves you time but helps you to streamline the entire logistics process and reduce costs too.
Relying on fast and smart software frees up resources so that you can focus on manual and strategic business areas. You’ll also benefit from improved visibility across your logistics network, allowing you to remedy issues quickly.
- Protect goods in transit
Delivering goods in good condition is a critical part of logistics. Customers or other businesses might refuse damaged goods on delivery, which could trigger the need for returns and redelivery. This will reduce profitability, so you should try to get it right first time.
Luckily, there are several simple and pragmatic steps you can take towards keeping your products and supplies safe on the roads. Make sure to secure goods with rope so that they’re safe during transportation, especially if they’re on a larger vehicle. Protective packaging is also recommended for any delicate materials, household appliances, or furniture.
- Maintain your fleet
Over time and with daily use, your vehicles will require maintenance. Downtime can not only lead to delays and inefficiencies, but heavy goods vehicles aren’t suited to extended periods at a standstill either.
Make sure that qualified mechanics undertake thorough checks of your vehicles on a regular basis. The basic tasks – including topping up oil and coolant – should be something that your driving team is trained to do. Keeping your vehicles in check also makes up part of your legal responsibilities as a logistics business, so it’s important to hold high standards.
- Manage fuel sustainably
Fuel is a major expense for all logistics companies. Securing the best deals on fuels will ensure that your team can go the extra mile – along with every penny of your budget.
Choosing efficient vehicles is a fantastic place to start too. If you’re looking at long-haul journeys and large-scale transportation, choosing diesel tankers might make the most sense. But for local deliveries in urban areas, you could consider using hybrid and electric vehicles to reduce your carbon footprint.
- Monitor performance
Lastly, consistency is key in any successful business strategy, especially if it’s a practical one.
Make sure you’re frequently looking out for performance updates, monitoring live metrics such as order accuracy, fulfilment, on-time deliveries, and managing stock. Above all, measuring customer satisfaction rates will help you to identify areas for improvement soon after they emerge.