The technology driven experience of buyers in today’s market differs vastly from those we experienced in the past. While brick and mortar stores selling goods are far from going extinct, there has been a definite increase in buyers choosing to make their purchases online. E-commerce is continuing to experience a faster growth rate than traditional retail sales.

As a result distribution centres have been growing in size and, due to client expectations surrounding delivery times, they have also been getting busier. Today the urban shopper expects to receive goods purchased online in less than a day – sometimes within even just a few hours, whilst rural shoppers certainly expect delivery to take no more than two or three days longer than their urban counterparts. To accomodate these demands, large distribution centres are quickly becoming the norm and, with big players like Amazon Australia entering the market forcing other businesses to compete, this is certainly a trend set to continue.

Along with these larger and busier distribution centres come a range of challenges that centre managers will need to ensure are taken care of efficiently and effectively. With couriers from multiple courier companies arriving at centres at different times, ensuring only authorised personnel are permitted on site, keeping efficient track of stock, and ensuring everyone is aware of their OH&S responsibilities, are all things that centre managers will need to be aware of. With these thoughts in mind, Sine has taken a look at the three big issues facing distribution centers and how Sine can help managers handle them.

1. Fast, authorised access

Large distribution centres tend to partner with multiple logistics partners to ensure the best delivery times for their clients. As a result, couriers from multiple agencies can be arriving and departing distribution centres at different times throughout the day. This can become a nightmare when trying to ensure everyone who enters the premises and takes possession of valuable stock is actually authorised to do so. 

Sine’s digital visitor management software can give you peace of mind by ensuring only those authorised to access your premises are able to check in via the Sine digital visitor management system. Upon arrival each courier will check-in using a front-of-house iPad. The check-in process includes the issuance of a printed photo ID badge meaning your staff can determine at a glance whether the person in front of them is authorised to be there.

As an added bonus, the check-in process is expedited for return visitors (as most of your couriers would be). After a courier has checked in once to your location, all future check-ins can be completed simply by entering their email address or mobile number at the front-of-house iPad. Alternatively, they can obtain the free to download SinePoint Pro app and use their phones to sign in, saving time and getting your goods out to your clients even faster.

2. QR codes for stock

With so many different couriers passing through your premises each day, picking up and dropping off a multitude of stock at different times, it can be difficult to keep track of it all.

With Sine’s digital visitor management system and the use of QR codes, items can easily be allocated to individual couriers and tracked completely, from the moment a piece of stock enters your distribution centre to the time it leaves to be delivered to its recipient.

By using the full check-in service with Sine, you can keep a digital record of who each courier is, what company they are with, how to contact them (in the case of stock issues or last minute amendments to orders), and you can use the notes system to keep a record of what order they picked up and delivered (i.e. the invoice number associated with that delivery). If you ever need to check on anything, detailed reports are available at the click of a button either to download or to view online.

3. OH&S responsibilities

Distribution centres are fast paced, physical work sites where manual labour is performed by a myriad of people, both employees and externally contracted couriers. As such, mediation of the risk of incident and injury is a major concern for distribution centre managers. An integral part of any risk reduction plan is the education of all personnel in the relevant OH&S processes and the implementation of OH&S procedures that help to ensure the safety of everyone involved.

Sine ensures that all visitors to a distribution centre are aware of the relevant OH&S processes and procedures by making them mandatory reading prior to checking into a site. Before Sine will finalise the check-in of any member of staff or contracted courier, the system can be set up to require that each visitor acknowledge the OH&S rules for the site by signing off on having read them. This ensures that before they can gain entry to your distribution centre they have read and have an up-to-date understanding of the risks and rules in place at your location. If they fail to do so, they will not be able to gain entry to your site and their check-in will be cancelled.

Contact us today for a free 30 day trial to discover how Sine can help you with the challenges you face within your distribution centres.