Take a look at the relationship you have with your consolidator. If you havent recently done so, you may be in for a big surprise. And if you dont currently use a consolidator, you may want to start. Why? Utilizing a consolidator can spell thousands of happy customers and huge savings for parcel shippers huge savings for you and your customers.
Better Than Ever
Consolidators are poised to make your business look better and run more efficiently than ever. They recognize that its more profitable to make an existing customer into a better, more loyal one than it is to solicit a new one. And its easier, too. So consolidators want to take good care of you. And theyve been quietly researching your shipping needs and striving to meet them in a more timely and cost-effective way.
As an industry, the consolidators have succeeded. Maybe you wont always see the services and improvements theyve added to their repertories, but youll definitely see the value. When you use a consolidator for your shipping needs, your customers will receive their packages faster, in better condition and more reliably, while youll get all the glory of a job well done. Youll retain customers, capture significant savings and better manage increasing parcel volumes.
Adding More Value
One of the best ways consolidators have grown their businesses is through the many value-added services they make available to you. When consolidators offer their customers value-added services, they become more than a provider, they become your partner. They work with your company to find innovative shipping solutions that help free up your staff so you can concentrate on your core competencies without the added burden of researching shipping solutions on your own.
In this issue, Parcel Shipping & Distribution asked consolidators to describe what they feel are their best value-added services and how using those services will promote your business, taking the complexity of large-volume shipping away so you can focus on your business. There are many different types of value-adds consolidators have to offer that will further enhance your partnership with them as well as your customers perception of your business, so take a look at what they have to say about their best offers. And if you see something your company can benefit from, call your consolidator today!
American Package Express
President and Chief
APX is unique in that it provides both a national and regional solution to distribution needs. As a leader in DDU delivery volume, APX leverages economies of scale to maximize DDU penetration and minimize cost. APX moves every package every day packages are not consolidated and this creates a competitive transit time offering through the lowest cost channel.
With 16 distribution centers and 20 secondary delivery terminals, APX is poised to maximize DDU penetration while leveraging the network to offer other value-add services: retail store delivery, data management and custom shipping solutions. In 2003, APX will add an additional five distribution centers to complete our nationwide presence.
APX provides a superior level of custodial control to ensure packages remain in our custody until tendering to the U.S. Postal Service at the final stage of delivery: the local post office. APX does not rely on outside cartage or delivery companies for delivery to the Postal Service; therefore, customer packages are handled less often, resulting in reduced loss and damage opportunities. All APX delivery drivers maintain a professional appearance, demeanor and logo.
Customer Data Management and Data Flow
The partnership between APX and the U.S. Postal Service serves to create a competitive ground parcel delivery service to UPS and FedEx. Along with competitive transit times, information is critical to our customers. Custodial control refers to our ability to manage customer data providing visibility through the entire package life cycle. APX successfully merges internal APX scan events with those of the Postal Service. These tracking events available on our Web site include:
Origin scan from shipper (APX scan event)
Primary facility unload scan (APX scan event)
Destination facility manifest scan (APX scan event)
Pallet scan (APX scan event)
DDU delivery time and date (APX scan event)
Out for delivery (USPS scan event)
Delivery confirmation (USPS scan event)
Delivery exception scan (USPS scan event)
But it doesnt stop there. Realizing some customers maintain internal delivery information, APX provides this data multiple times per day though a variety of channels.
Bill Monk, while at Nordstrom, had this to say about the experience of working with APX and the data management system: APXs technological offerings are hands down the best that we have experienced. They have provided raw data, management reports and package information all available through one Web site. The site allows you to track your packages with the USPS Delivery Confirmation barcode or a shippers reference number. APX has also made it extremely simple to download routing guides. This has allowed Nordstrom to keep up with both new DDU offerings and routing changes as they are made to insure we are getting the best service for our customers.
President and Chief
Our company has strategically partnered with the USPS to bring alternative pricing and value to our customers. And DDU Express promises to maintain the highest level of customer satisfaction.
The management team at DDU Express has over 100 years of United States Postal Service experience. This knowledge in postal operations, logistics, quality control, marketing and sales and customer service provides our customers a service level that maximizes efficiencies and minimizes shipping costs and delays. For the last 10 years of my postal career, I worked predominately with mail order companies. I developed and helped implement distribution models for customers to use zone skipping to reduce their overall shipping costs by injecting packages directly into the U.S. Postal Services Bulk Mail Center (BMC) network and multiple consolidator networks.
DDU Express expertise ensures that our clients packages are properly prepared and entered into the Postal Services network in a timely manner with full accountability. All of this experience enables DDU Express to provide customers with the best value in the parcel shipping industry.
We have recently been awarded the prestigious Parcel Carrier of the Year for 2002 by one of the Nations largest cataloguers. We surpassed our major competitors, FedEx and UPS, to receive this award. Our understanding of postal regulations, policies and networks paved the way to garner this award by providing a quality, cost-effective USPS delivery alternative for residential and commercial packages nationwide.
DDU Express provides shipping solutions for all parcel shippers. We founded and built the company with the mission to provide a low-cost parcel shipping alternative for our customers. We have created our own sophisticated, proprietary software and internal systems that maximize our package volumes to be entered closest to their final destinations. In 2002, over 75% of our packages were entered directly into the USPS local post office of destination, also known as the Destination Delivery Unit (DDU). DDU Express understands the Postal Services requirements for optimum package delivery. And our operation has been developed so that all Postal Service requirements are met to ensure quality processing and expediency of all our customers packages.
When it comes to streamlining operations, achieving customer satisfaction and reducing shipping costs, DDU Express has what it takes. DDU Express is a nationwide package delivery service providing consultation, analysis and shipping solutions to shippers throughout the US. Together with the United States Postal Service, our company has strategically partnered to bring alternative pricing and value to our customers. And DDU Express promises to maintain the highest level of customer satisfaction.
Allow your parcel delivery needs to benefit from our award-winning package delivery system; you will see it in service and in your bottom line.
At Parcel Direct, youll find a small-business attitude toward personal service and attention to detail. We are dedicated to meeting your definition of package delivery success.
It is important for our customers to have a consistent delivery because they expect it and, even more significantly, their customers expect it. Consistent delivery is achieved by leveraging two things: transportation and technology.
Obviously, transportation is the biggest component of the delivery process. Parcel Direct has a dedicated fleet of vehicles that allows us to reliably and consistently move parcels to our partner, the U.S. Postal Service. Because we operate and manage the fleet, we have the ability to dispatch and reroute trucks based on the unique needs of our customers, resulting in a service thats very flexible. In other words, by managing all transportation in-house, Parcel Direct controls the process from the customer to the Postal Service.
Beyond transportation is technology. Technology has forever enhanced the way people do business. This is no different for Parcel Direct. Weve invested in the latest technology, then integrated the technology across all our processing facilities. Because we utilize the same state-of-the-art technology at all our facilities, were able to quickly move parcels through our system and provide reliable, time-definite transit for our customers. In short, Parcel Direct uses its state-of-the-art technology to help keep delivery times consistent, reliable and quick.
Consistency in delivery gives Parcel Direct the unique ability to rise above the many other parcel consolidators. By continuing to invest in the latest technology and automation and by managing the entire transportation life cycle of a parcel Parcel Direct will continue to lead the path to the future of small parcel transportation in the business-to-consumer arena. Add the legendary customer service carried over from our parent company, Quad/Graphics, and the choice in parcel consolidators becomes even clearer.
Parcel Direct assigns an individual account manager to each client. One person, one touch. Account managers work together with clients to identify their unique characteristics and needs and how they are best integrated with the Parcel Direct process.
Parcel Direct is a subsidiary of Quad/Graphics, a company as renowned for its customer service as it is for its printing expertise. Modeling our customer-care strategy after our partner in print, account managers also work with our own internal logistics division, Quad Transportation Services, to monitor and track the careful handling and timely shipping of parcels. We understand the procedures and processes of the U.S. Postal Service, our postal partner for the last 30 years. In turn, this knowledge helps us provide our clients with optimum service and delivery.
At Parcel Direct, youll find a small-business attitude toward personal service and attention to detail. Our company is dedicated to meeting your definition of package delivery success the highest quality delivery service possible, in the shortest possible time, at the best possible price.
Steven R. Korol
President, Package Services
Our close working relationship with the U.S. Postal Service allows us to manage difficult or hard-to-reach delivery areas and speed packages through to postal system.
As one of the largest consolidators and mailers of small packages in the US, our Standard ground service (Standard B) is the heart of our package distribution business. Our national distribution network allows us to pick up packages that originate almost anywhere in the US and enter them deep into the postal stream for reliable, efficient last-mile delivery to every home in the country. We provide our customers with flexible national or regional origin options and tracking capabilities on every package they send, which ensures that our services are as reliable and easy to use as they are cost effective. However, our services do not end there. As the needs of our customers grow, we continue to explore and develop new service capabilities to take advantage of our national distribution expertise capabilities and scale to drive additional cost-saving offerings. For example, our Lightweight Express service gives value-conscious volume shippers a two- to five-day service option that is efficient as well as competitive.
Packages distributed via Lightweight Express are time-sensitive by nature, so we have made significant investments in routing/information technology for enhanced control, visibility and delivery accuracy. The combination of this advanced systems approach with our significant package volume allows us to enter the packages deep into the U.S. Postal System, generating savings of between 15% and 40%. Our close working relationship with the U.S. Postal Service allows us to manage difficult or hard-to-reach delivery areas and speed Lightweight Express packages through the postal system for final delivery to the home. Donnelley Logistics has also invested in technology that gives the customer visibility into the delivery process by providing valuable tracking and reporting data.
Weve seen tremendous growth with our customers in the pharmaceutical industry. With the rising costs of healthcare, there has been a considerable shift in consumers ordering more medications through their companies mail service pharmaceutical benefit plans, which further amplifies the need for a low-cost shipping alternative. Other ideal users of the Lightweight Express service are e-retailers and merchandisers who concentrate on specific timed-release or higher-value merchandise programs such as DVD releases, jewelry or important replacement parts.
As our Lightweight Express service further expands, we will continue to make investments in the people, processes and technology to continue providing value for our customers. Donnelley Logistics is committed to making sure that all of our services deliver value, efficiency and ease of use to satisfy the needs of our customers.
Our deliveries will arrive on time without question. At SmartMail, we do whatever it takes to honor that commitment.
President and CEO
The value-added service that is most beneficial to SmartMails customers is the quality control that we have built into our process. Each SmartCenter (processing facility) follows a systematic receiving process that identifies damaged or misdirected pieces. Deliveries are weighed upon receipt, reconciled with the shipment information sent by our customers and then sent to encoding for individual processing.
During a process called encoding, every package is individually weighed. SmartMail confirms the accuracy of each address and verifies it is deliverable by checking it against the Postal Services database of 140 million US addresses (CASS certification). This verifies that the address exists ensuring the mail is deliverable and yields the highest level of postal discount.
Then a unique 11-digit SmartMail barcode indicia is created and applied to each package, which quickly moves it through the post office to the end recipient. Bad ZIP Codes are corrected on site and reported back to our customers along with undeliverable addresses. Every address is electronically compiled during encoding to build a routing scheme. This adds quality control to the sorting process and ensures all packages received at a SmartCenter are processed upon receipt and sorted correctly.
Next, packages are sorted to determine postal discount eligibility. Postal discounts per piece are compiled and reported back to our customers. Finally, SmartMail bypasses all origin-end Postal facilities and flies the pieces directly to the destination Postal Service processing and distribution center.
By utilizing both our own nationwide network and Postal Services expedited services network, SmartMail tracks each delivery to its destination. Our unique tracking number that has followed the package through the SmartCenter is matched to the manifest copies given to the post office. The SmartMail operator who encoded the mail, the workstation where the package was processed, and the date and time it was processed are also tied to this unique number and provided to our customers online.
Any discrepancies in any step of the process are dealt with immediately. The quality SmartMail has built into our process allows us to monitor our internal performance as well as the effectiveness and efficiencies of the Postal Service.
SmartMail is also in contact with our customers through surveys and face-to-face meetings to identify areas of improvement and act on them. Our deliveries will arrive on time without question. At SmartMail, we do whatever it takes to honor that commitment.