With the recent bouts of flooding across the UK, many 3PL companies have been battling to transport goods to affected areas. In some cases, where entire towns have been blocked off, it is virtually impossible to deliver stock on time.
And this isn’t the first or even the last time extreme weather will create a headache for 3PLs across the nation
Heavy snow is rare for most southern parts of the country, but freak blizzards during the winter months can stop road traffic for days before they are made safe for transportation again.
As well as adverse weather conditions closing roads and cutting off large areas of the map, employees travelling to and from work can also be affected. Cancelled public transport or closed roads can leave employees stranded at home and warehouses with no staff to run them.
Some of the worst affected companies are those trading in fresh foods and perishables, as these require a quick delivery to supermarkets and any delays can cost thousands of pounds in lost profits.
Unfortunately, the weather is something that even the best 3PL companies can’t control, but there are ways to help reduce the knock on effect of bad weather and backlogged shipments.
If bad weather is forecast from your manufacturers overseas, check your inventory levels to see where certain numbers of products could be topped up. If possible, try to arrange shipments for arrival a week or so earlier than planned in order to avoid any congestion problems.
If the problems are closer to home, be prepared to deal with customer complaints or queries. If your 3PL has a dedicated customer care team that handles this, then warning your customers about possible delays before they buy can help reduce unsatisfied customers.
Extreme weather can slow down and in some cases even halt shipments and the transportation of goods. In situations like these, working with your 3PL and planning an effective strategy is the best option, as a first-rate 3PL company will be doing all they can to start the supply chain moving again.