Logistics As Total Service

Logistics is critical to the manufacturing process and supply chain management. The term itself was born out of the military. Think along the lines of moving military hardware, troops, ships, planes, rations, and all the supplies that accompany any military operation. Today logistics affects everything we manufacture, build, or purchase in business or as consumers.

Global shipping was brought to a halt last March when the world’s largest container ship, the Ever Given was stuck in the Suez Canal blocking a major shipping artery. The massive ship took two weeks to move. Meanwhile, 400 cargo ships loaded with goods had to wait until Ever Given cleared the canal. It set off a huge supply and logistical nightmare that touched nearly every aspect of daily living worldwide. Goods and products move around the globe every single minute of the day. We tend to take it for granted that our ketchup, bandaids, tires, lawnmowers, and other goods will be available when the end-user is ready to purchase them. The Ever Given reminded manufacturers, consumers, and suppliers just how fragile logistics can be.

Covid-19, the Colonial Pipeline hacker disruption, fuel shortages and hikes, acts of terrorism, severe weather events like hurricanes, natural and human-caused events can all affect the supply global and national supply chain. Who knew a year ago there would be a shortage of computer chips affecting everything from vehicle manufacturers to electronics?

The printing and packaging industry depends on logistics in two aspects. They are dependent upon supplies like substrates, ink, laminate, roll stock, paper, plastic, metalized film, etc., to deliver for their customers. You need to make sure you are using a printing and packaging company that has long-term relationships and solid communication with suppliers even when the global flow may be hampered. The second consideration is the shipment of your order and goods in a timely manner in accordance with the master production and project schedule.

Customers should be able to ask hard and fair questions in regard to timelines for obtaining assets to do the job, production timelines, and target delivery dates upon project completion. Experienced printing and packaging companies have to develop relationships with FedEx, UPS, to ensure a timely flow to meet target delivery dates for customers. An accurate timeline for your order cannot be generated until the shipping times of the required pieces, and the shipping time to your destination is known.

Printing and packaging companies have to have time to develop all of the information regarding an order. Their calendar will include what assets and materials are needed, how much is required, shipping times from their suppliers, scheduling the job with the production, and shipping the order to the customer. This is an example of total customer service.

Ask your printer if they use tracking software for shipping orders and if they can set you up to receive email notifications from the shipping agent. Proof of Delivery can be a useful tool if your product is packaged at a third-party facility, such as a contract packager, to know the packaging is delivered.

Remember when you place an order there is a lot of behind the scene activity from securing supplies, to scheduling press dates, coming off the press, and being prepared for shipment.

Century Printing and Packaging is an ISO 9001:2015 certified company located in Greer, South Carolina. Flexographic, roll stock film, flexible packaging, digital printing, CBD, and craft beer labels are among our extensive print products and technologies. We are family-owned and operated. Call us today about all of your printing or packaging needs. Our southeast location allows us to have a two-day shipping point via FedEx or UPS ground to 80% of the U.S population and we can expedite as necessary.

Ben Waldrop President
Century Printing & Packaging
Greer, SC 29651

Why Does Your Shipping Location Matter?

In one word it’s pretty simple, economics. Manufacturers depend on shipping whether it’s rail, ground, air, or by ship. Turn around times for printed labels, and packaged goods are the lifeblood for manufacturers whether small or big. If your shipping point is farther away it’s going to cost you more in shipping, but more importantly invaluable time. You want to get the product to the shelves, vendors, or suppliers as soon as possible. Having to wait for a vendor who is poorly located can be costly.

Shipping is an important part of supply chain management. Those managing supply chains and logistics for manufacturers are continually faced with finding more immediate streams of supply in an effort to cut their costs and thereby increasing revenue. You can have shipping issues from your plant to a vendor to complete a product fulfillment, or from your location to the consumer, retailer, or distributor.

One of the most important considerations when contracting a printing and packaging vendor is the location starting and endpoints once their work on your product is complete. Is the vendor shipping directly to your customers, or back to you for the fulfillment of the order? Other important considerations are your average order value, weight, margins, and special instructions, or shipping restrictions.

Real estate has always preached, “Location, Location, Location!” Nothing could be truer for companies in terms of shipping. Is your printing and packaging company centrally located to ensure on-time or better shipping? Are they causing you time and money because shipments are taking longer because of their location?

The Upstate of South Carolina is uniquely located in terms of ideal shipping locations. The Upstate is the westernmost part of the Palmetto State and includes the ten counties that have easy access to the I-85 corridor. Greenville County is half-way between Charlotte and Atlanta, also known as the economically and commerce powerful Charlanta Corridor.

Greenville provides access to I-85/I-26, and South Carolina’s two ports, the inland port in Greer, and the coastal port of Charleston. Three major airports instate are accessible within three hours by ground, Greenville Spartanburg International, Columbia Metro Airport, and Charleston International. Rail access to both ports is easily accessed in Greenville County. Serviced by Norfolk Southern the South Carolina Inland Port located in Greer offers 1-day rail service to the Port of Charleston, and a 1-hour, two-way truck turn around. This doesn’t include ground access within two hours to Atlanta and Charlotte!

Greenville County is located within a two-day shipping point of any location within the United States! It provides peace of mind and quick turn around for companies with vendors, suppliers, or manufacturers in the region.

Successful label printing and packaging companies recognize the importance of delivering quality products on time. Delays can be costly for these providers and their customers.

Ben Waldrop
Century Printing & Packaging
Greer, SC 29651

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