Most warehouses don’t just ship products out to their customers – they also receive finished goods and materials on a daily basis. While shipping and receiving operations may be similar in nature, there are many differences that set them apart. The preparation, processes, and personnel can be very different for inbound and outbound freight at any given warehouse. Once you’re aware of these differences, partnering with your carrier will become a much smoother process.
Although we often think about trucks picking up from a warehouse and shipping out, that usually can’t be done until the inbound logistics process has been completed. Even plants that put the product together cannot move forward with production until they receive raw materials or other parts that are required for the final product. In many cases, inbound shipments must stick to a stricter schedule because a missed delivery can shut an entire production line down.
Outbound freight, on the other hand, does not usually require as much just-in-time scheduling. Once the product is finished, the customer and manufacturer can agree on a delivery date ahead of time, giving both parties some wiggle room when it comes to scheduling transit. Freight handlers who are responsible for outbound shipments don’t necessarily need to stage the product right away. Inbound workers, however, must be ready to bring materials off of a truck immediately to the production line.
None of these are hard and fast rules, and there are certainly exceptions when outbound shipments must be expedited and when inbound loads have flexibility. However most freight handlers can expect a wide variance between the ways they handle outbound and inbound materials. Fortunately, we can utilize communication and collaboration to ensure that all shipments arrive on time and get out the door in an efficient manner.
At Zip Xpress, we understand that you want every shipment to be as effortless as possible. Every shipment should arrive undamaged and on time so that you can delight your customers. Communication and collaboration with your carriers can help make this possible and understanding the nuances in logistics can ensure a successful partnership. Here at Zip, we educate our customers and work to solve their problems for them, creating custom carrier solutions tailored to their needs. To see what we can do for you, start today with Zip Xpress!