How will Cartonization Help your Bottom Line?
Faster, safer, cheaper…Go:
In today’s competitive business environment distributors are battling to salvage any margin that can be recaptured operationally in order to positively impact the bottom line. Additionally, competition has increased the service levels demanded by today’s customers who “want it now” with free shipping.
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No longer is there a “we can process it tomorrow, throw it in a box, and when it gets there…well, it gets there.”
Today’s customers expect the following:
- The goods need to arrive as soon as possible at the lowest possible cost
- Same day order processing even when orders are placed late in the day
- The shipment needs to be in the minimum number of cartons, neatly packed, without excess dunnage
This all needs to be accomplished while maintaining productivity, efficiency and being environmentally conscious.
Where should we start? Cartonization.
What is Cartonization and how is it performed?
Cartonization is an algorithmic process which prepares orders for order fulfillment by first determining the quantity, size, and type of containers required to successfully complete a customer order. As orders are processed by the WES, a cartonization module can intelligently group the lines of each order into subsets of work by outbound shipping containers.
With an eye on the following factors the right size, type and quantity of containers can be determined:
Carton rigidity required – are the goods in the order, dense or pointed, like a barbell or crowbar? Can this jeopardize the integrity of the carton through the shipping process?
Oversized items not to be cartonized – are there items that are part of the customer order which can be shipped alone in their own packaging by applying the shipping label to the outside of the carton, saving unnecessary carton material? Additionally, are the items simply too large to reasonably ship in a repack container or due to carrier limitations? Does the order need to ship LTL and be consolidated with other items which would normally ship via small parcel carrier?
Pack Attributes – product families and rules-based segmentation – are there lines on the same order that contain items which cannot be packaged in the same shipping carton; for business or carrier reason, such as food products not comingling with cleaning?
Picking and order completion ratio – forced splits – can orders be broken down by goods being physically located across the pick system in multiple zone environments? Will this increase the picking efficiency and help order cycle time by decreasing travel along the system?
Special dunnage and product handling attribute – What are some of the ways to handle items with special handling needs?
Three ways the Conveyco team can help:
1. Reducing material costs
Our cartonization algorithms will help you choose the most cost-effective outer packaging for your shipments. By recommending the right size and type of packaging, we also help decrease excess dunnage and positively impact the environment.
2. Controlling freight costs
Cartonization logic can analyze your orders with an eye towards controlling shipping charges on an order. For example, a decision can be made if a package can still be within the weight range allowed by our carriers if all of the lines for a given order are packed within one shipping carton or if the order needs to be split. By optimizing the correct weight to package size ratio for each carton, you can control Dim Weight surcharges implemented by small parcel carriers in 2015. This can translate into thousands or in some cases hundreds of thousands of dollars in freight savings.
3. Reducing labor costs
By predetermining the size, quantity, and type of packaging required to pack an order, the productivity of packing operators is greatly increased. Orders can be batched and delivered to packing areas by type or order profile. For example by batching single line/single piece orders that can be shipped in an envelope a packer can increase their pack rate exponentially since they no longer have to pause between orders to consider changes in packaging or order profiles.