There is only one way to know if your company is getting what it needs from its third-party logistics provider: fulfillment reports. These reports are essentially measurements of certain benchmarks and are necessary for ongoing evaluations of your progress with that partnership. Your company is unique, so you’ll need customized third-party logistics metrics to help you find solutions for optimization. Here’s how fulfillment services and reports can help you make your business work better.
Types of Reporting
Real-Time Inventory and Order Reports
The purpose and benefit of fulfillment reports is that they can show you in real-time when your customers order, what they order, and the status or count of inventory in your warehouse. This information is used to provide you with the data you need to manufacture and deliver products in record time, so customers get their orders when they expect to. Additionally, shrinkage is one of the biggest issues in a retail market, which is why you need to know how well your fulfillment partner is handling and protecting your inventory. Reports will reflect all of these metrics.
Usage reports are a great way for your company to learn about your customers and fulfillment partner’s habits over a certain period of time based on data generated. These reports can help you predict patterns, correct errors, and alter your processes to be more efficient. Usage reports give you the information you need to have better control of your systems.
Expense reports detail the items that your fulfillment provider purchased for the sake of your business and the costs of each item. These reports are very important for you to get an understanding of what aspects of your business you can scale back on to save, and which areas require more investing. Expense reports can help you plan your strategy accordingly, and will allow you to spot errors early to prevent them from reoccurring. Some of the information fields in an expense report include the following:
- Date that the expenditure was incurred (receipt date)
- Nature of the expense
- Amount of the expense
- Account charged for the expense
- Subtotal of each type of expense
- Grand total of the amount of reimbursement requested
Optimization According to Fulfillment Reports
Here are some of the specific ways you can optimize your business with the help of fulfillment reports from your third-party logistics provider.
There are several factors that influence a product’s velocity (the rate of which the item moves through the supply chain). These factors include seasonality, availability of good labour, recent marketing promotions, and the weather. Patterns emerge as more data is collected, so you can make predictions and adjust your inventory to suit demand. Inventory adjustments can be made in real time to gain an advantage in your supply chain.
Identifying Error-Making Carriers
When it comes to choosing your carrier, there are more choices available now than ever before. It’s wise to negotiate contracts and compare them to others, but this can be a tedious process. A good way to gauge a carrier’s speed and reliability is by generating reports on various performance indicators. These may include frequency of invoicing errors and number of delayed deliveries. If you notice carriers that continue to make invoicing errors, you know to stay clear of them.
Product Addition or Removal
In some cases, available data may not be sufficient to capture a clear pattern. However, if sales trends show that an item is heading downward, you can assume it is losing popularity. You can use this information and decide not to restock the item.
Find Where You Can Save Money
Sometimes it can be challenging to find areas where you can save money, but this is an important aspect to include as you strive for optimization. The data collected in your reports may be enough to make the right adjustments, but you can ask yourself the following questions to help you decide where to cut back:
- When is labour needed more often? When do I notice an oversupply of workers and when should extra workers be sent home?
- Are there better ways to reduce picking time for larger items?
- Which venders have the tendency to short-ship or ship damaged items?
- Which carriers are the best options in which regions?
Choose Lean Supply Solutions for Your Fulfillment Reports
At Lean Supply Solutions, you can benefit from quality and accurate fulfillment reports that help you make wiser decisions about optimizing your supply chain. We are a third-party logistics provider in Toronto, and our Lean Methodology helps our clients eliminate any operations, equipment, personnel, or resources that do not add value to their supply chains. We do our best to ensure that you consistently deliver the right products to the right customers at the right time.
When you outsource your fulfillment to us, you can benefit from long-term savings, customer satisfactions that deliver the best return on investment, lower operating costs, improved focus, high-end technology, and more. Our services also include warehousing and distribution, pick and pack, repackaging, integrated solutions with companies like Amazon, labelling, online reporting, transportation, and more! You can trust us to provide consistent, predictable, and quality results. Contact us today to learn more!