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Oh what a hornets’ nest!

Did anyone see the report in the Daily Mail before Christmas about the handling of parcels - take a look here
When we mentioned delivery problems last month, we didn’t fully appreciate just what a hornets’ nest this was, with so many dismantlers dissatisfied with either the cost or service of deliveries.

The trouble is, in the world today, courier delivery is essential but from the many comments received, we get the feeling that couriers who were previously happy to carry green parts are not so keen now. Perhaps this is because there is so much other work around that they can be more choosy. If that’s the case, what are we doing to put them off?

We don’t need to explain to anyone here that second hand parts covers a multitude of packages, from the smallest item that can be readily popped into a jiffy bag up to engine transmission assemblies that must be carefully cleaned and fixed to pallets to ensure their safe transportation. And then there’s all those delicates, and we’re not talking about woolly jumpers! Body panels and glass items spring to mind. How do you ensure they don’t get damaged in transit without spending more than the part is worth?

Thanks to all of you for the comments we have received and the details of the techniques and operations deployed by the industry. One thing that appears to jump out is that there is no accepted standard that all can use which is approved by couriers, and this is a topic we are trying to get our heads around.

Luckily we have CARS2016 this summer and we have been talking with the organisers about the possibility of setting up some packaging workshops so that visitors can see what is best practice to balance cost but at the same time, minimise returns. This is easy to say but not so easy to do. If we are going to achieve best packaging options for the range of products we sell in a very tight timescale (by July), we need your help to move this forward.

Initially, we want to know what you would consider a good range of parts to cover and what you would do to protect those parts in transit. Once we have this information, we shall then talk to couriers about what they would consider acceptable. Perhaps there are opportunities for standard cartons and containers that could become the norm for the industry. Delivery of those more delicate or particularly heavy items, where packaging is expensive would need particular consideration. Maybe there should be agreements with the couriers to return the packaging. Should there be a surcharge for a type of reusable container?

We hope this subject will get you thinking as it is an area where the industry can come together and help itself. Standardised packaging can bring with it the added benefit of professionalism which can only help build future sales.

As many of your comments pointed out, packaging isn’t everything, there are still big question marks over many of the courier services. We shall come to these further down the line, but well protected parts should lead to fewer damages and fewer returns.

If you feel this is important, then email us here with your ideas and solutions.

February 2016

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