What is cross docking in a warehouse? The term refers to the process of moving products from a manufacturing plant or distributor directly to a customer with little to no material handling in between. There are many benefits to using cross docking to manage your supply chain. Some of these benefits include a reduction of damaged products, since there are fewer hands the deliveries must go through, and a reduction in the need for warehouse space.
Types of Cross Docking
There are a variety of cross-dock freight solutions available, and each caters to the different products each company tends to ship. The types of cross docking include manufacturing, warehousing and distribution, transportation, retail, opportunistic, and supplier consolidation.
Manufacturing Cross Docking
Manufacturing cross docking works by receiving purchased and inbound products required by a manufacturing plant. The warehouse can then prepare sub-assemblies for production orders.
Warehousing and Distribution Cross Docking
For this process, inbound products from various vendors are consolidated into a mixed product pallet. This pallet is then delivered to the customer.
Transportation Cross Docking
Transportation cross docking combines multiple shipments from different vendors carried in less-than-truckload (LTL) quantities with small package carriers. The goal of this operation is to gain economies of scale.
Retail Cross Docking
This operation involves receiving items from various vendors and sorting them onto outbound truck to send to multiple retail stores.
Opportunistic Cross Docking
This method can be implemented in any warehouse. It works by transferring products directly from receiving to the outbound shipping dock to meet timely demands, such as a customer sales orders.
The Advantages of Cross Docking
The advantages of cross docking include reduced costs for shipping, handling, labor, and warehouse stays. The benefits also include improved turn-around times to recipients, improving customer satisfaction and repeat purchasing. Among the multiple benefits of cross-docking services, the following apply.
Reduces Warehousing Cost
Thanks to the more direct approach of cross-docking services from the supplier to the customer, there is a lesser need for large warehouse areas to store products. The savings from a smaller warehouse space will be very beneficial for companies who want to allocate more of their budget into their products, marketing, development, etc.
Creates Fast Turnaround
A high turnover of products means they are moving quickly through the cross-docking terminal within 24 hours. This advantage directly improves time management of employees, meaning companies are getting more productivity.
Reduces Handling/Operating Costs
Since products are going from the supplier directly to the customer, there are fewer hands on products. Less material handling increases accuracy and decreases the risk of goods being damaged.
Reduces Shipping Costs
Setting up a cross-docking system can be very cost-effective for your business because it eliminates the need to perform picking and inspection. It also helps businesses save money by reducing transportation costs. Products can be gathered from one central point to be shipped to one destination.
Cross-Docking Services in Maryland by Cannon Hill Logistics
Cannon Hill Logistics specializes in outsourced wholesale and retail product distribution, fulfillment, and logistic services based out of Frederick, MD. Our 30 years of experience has been dedicated towards giving the tools and personalized services that any new or existing company needs to streamline distribution and boost market share. Our fulfillment center is 45 miles from the Port of Baltimore and 40 miles from Baltimore-Washington International Airport, so inbound freight moves to us quickly and inexpensively. We can ship to half of the USA population within two business days using ground transportation. Feel free to contact us or call 1-(800) 822-4747 for further information.