In our increasingly global economy, intermodal shipping and effective supply chain management is essential. Staying ahead of competitive pressures and keeping pace with growing customer demand has meant businesses of all sizes are discovering greater opportunities by going global.
When you want to optimize profits, sourcing from regions with the lowest costs for procurement, assembly and manufacturing makes sense. So too does commercializing your products in areas with high demand.
However, it’s not without risk. Global supply chains with intermodal shipping (some combination of air, sea, truck and rail) are inherently more complex. Anytime there is the flow of goods, services, information and payments across international boundaries, business leaders must be sure there is skilled coordination of these efforts. This is where a Cleveland intermodal shipping and 3PL service like On Time Delivery & Warehouse proves especially beneficial.
Managing the global supply chain in-house is too often more trouble than it’s worth, even under ideal conditions. Throw in a natural disaster, political unrest or fluctuating oil prices, and companies quickly become overwhelmed scrambling for alternatives. Contracting with an experienced 3PL that has a comprehensive risk management strategy already mapped helps largely alleviate your headaches.
Freight shipping (aka freight transport) is the physical process by which we move goods and cargo through the sea, land and air. Like so many other industries in recent years, freight shipping has been forced to evolve to meet ever-increasing consumer expectations, thanks in part to the so-called “Amazon effect.”
The Amazon effect is named for the multi-billion dollar online retailer that sells everything from podcast equipment to pools – usually delivering in a matter of a couple days or even hours.
Our Cleveland freight shipping experts know that once-upon-a-time (not so very long ago), companies used to capture customers on their own terms. Now, the Amazon effect means customers expect to be addressed on their terms – and on their timelines. It’s not quite as fast as a fairy godmother, but it’s often pretty close.
That means freight shippers must keep up – and we’re committed to doing just that. Freight shipping and 3PL providers that used to launch strategic planning initiatives every three years now need to make sure improvements are constant. On Time Delivery & Warehouse is dedicated to guaranteeing our Cleveland freight shipping services and supply chain operations are agile and responsive and employ the best people and technology available – all while making safety a top priority.
The best inventory management systems go beyond just tracking products and materials.
Basic warehousing involves overseeing the storage, outflow and receipt of your goods. But even first-rate businesses find it daunting to do so on their own with perfect accuracy. Working with a dedicated Cleveland 3PL warehousing partner can help you meet customer demand and overcome the accuracy and logistical snags that too often trip up otherwise competent companies.
Many Businesses Struggle With Good Inventory Management
A few years ago, researchers at Harvard Business School looked closely at the inaccuracy of inventory management systems. In an empirical analysis of more than 370,000 inventory records at 37 stores managed by one retailer, study authors discovered a stunning 65 percent of inventory records were inaccurate. The study, published by the journal Management Science, identified the top means of streamlining inventory management and reducing errors. These included regular auditing practices and use of cutting-edge inventory software programs that offered real-time monitoring.
The 3PL warehousing and inventory management services offered by On Time Delivery & Warehouse in Cleveland give you these options and more. By having a third party supervise your inventory management and supply chain distribution, you can focus on business development and other critical operation and growth initiatives.
For small businesses, a reliable transportation partner is key to successfully scaling operations.
LTL shipping refers to “less than truckload,” meaning the shipment doesn’t require an entire full-sized trailer. Cleveland’s On Time Delivery & Warehouse offers both FTL (full truck load) and LTL shipping, with local pickup and delivery at competitive prices. By moving goods from several different customers on the same truck, LTL shipping options provide a cost-effective method for customers who don’t need an entire rig to fulfill each order. LTL shipping rates are generally determined by class, weight and distance needs.
Beyond lower costs, LTL shipping also helps reduce your carbon footprint and give you a greater variety of services (local pickup and delivery, liftgate deliveries, Haz-Mat certified transport and same-day/ next-day deliveries).
More than 70 percent of all freight (commercial goods transported via air, sea or land) moved in the U.S. goes on trucks, which carry more than 10.4 billions of tons of freight annually, according to the American Trucking Associations. In the coming months and years, the Journal of Commerce reports demand for these services is expected to climb, as the federal electronic logging device (ELD) mandate that went into effect in December is raising the bar for loading and unloading speed requirements and necessitating better routing guides. Plus, many large corporations are ramping up “America first” efforts, pushing expansion of U.S. manufacturing activity. Meanwhile, online retailers are striving to keep pace with faster, cheaper delivery expectations of consumers.
While it’s important for business leaders to understand the challenges and evolving dynamics of LTL shipping in Northeast Ohio, they need not compromise on high expectations for service, quality and pricing.
E-commerce is a rapidly-advancing supply chain frontier, driving demand for well-placed public warehousing in Northeast Ohio. But simply providing empty space isn’t enough for many businesses. Effective third-party logistics (3PL) involves a trifecta of quality warehousing, shipping and fulfillment – and it all must be done from a strategically advantageous location.
3PL warehousing and distribution itself isn’t new. It’s a cornerstone business strategy that can streamline the flow of goods through the supply chain by helping you control costs, limit over-stocked inventory and arrange timely transportation. Whether you’re a small start-up company staking a presence or a large firm intent on seizing ripe opportunity in a new area, 3PL warehousing at On Time Delivery & Warehouse offers desirable options for smart scaling of your operations in Cleveland and beyond.
Our 3PL warehousing experts recognize the complexity of fluctuating logistics and will work to help you tailor a public warehousing and distribution plan that fits. Although many companies initially seek public warehousing as a short-term solution, these arrangements often turn into long-term relationships for On Time Delivery & Warehouse. Businesses find our 3PL warehousing and distribution services are not only convenient but key to their ongoing competitive edge.
Freight shipping – across all modes and volumes – is poised for a boom in the U.S. over the next 10 years, with the volume rising from 15.18 billion tons moved in 2017 to 20.73 billion tons in 2028 – an increase of nearly 37 percent. That’s according to the American Trucking Association’s Forecast to 2028 report, which evaluates existing and projected growth of the U.S. freight transportation industry.
On Time Delivery & Warehouse’s Cleveland freight shipping services are prepared to meet these rising demands. Our responsive, dependable team is always working on ways to streamline, innovate and improve our processes for maximum customer satisfaction. In our experience, the better we understand the unique challenges of our customers, the better we can serve them in the long haul.
The ATA anticipates there will be some freight capacity shortfalls over the next decade, with tightness especially in the arena of freight handling. On Time Delivery & Warehouse leaders carefully monitor market trends, helping us stay ahead of the quality curve with experienced import/ export freight handlers, trailers, box trucks, flat beds and same day/ next day service.
The market for third-party logistics (3PL, or sometimes TPL) in Cleveland and globally is on an upswing, according to recent analysis by researchers at TechNavio.
For those unfamiliar, third-party logistics and supply chain management is when companies use third-party businesses, like On Time Delivery & Warehouse, to outsource elements of distribution and fulfillment services. A wide range of industries benefit from having a third party involved in the logistics process, which helps reduce cycle times and inventories, lower cost and bolster customer service.
The more companies discovering the profitability of hiring a 3PL, the faster the industry and demand grows. Ohio is considered a prime route for 3PL because of its central Midwest location and easy highway access.
At On Time Delivery & Warehouse (OTDW), our Cleveland 3PL is at the forefront of this growth trend, offering business-to-business operations a reliable means to meet rising consumer demand. We’re not just any Cleveland trucking company or warehouse provider. We pride ourselves on fast, efficient distribution and transloading freight operations. Clients trust us to quickly and carefully load, unload, store and ship their materials and ensure customers receive them punctually and in excellent condition.
Around the World with On Time Delivery & Warehouse (a peek behind the supply chain curtain)
If you squint your eyes, and stretch your imagination, you’ll see that the world of Supply Chain Management is dynamic indeed. All the tropes are there: Ticking clocks. Exotic locations. High stakes deadlines. International intrigue. All the elements of a great story.
If this sounds farfetched, that’s okay. We here at On Time Delivery & Warehouse are firm believers in the business, and we don’t take ourselves so seriously that we can’t daydream a little. In fact that’s what this blog is for. Other than covering the serious business of shipping, trucking, and warehousing, we’ll also take the time to let our minds wander a little and dig into some musings on the business of supply chain management and third party logistics.
To prove our point, we’re going to shed a little light on some of the more exciting aspects of import/export cargo freight.
So join us for a peak behind the supply chain curtain in this, the latest installment of the OTD Blog. Sit back, let your mind wander, and tag along as we follow a piece of cargo freight around the world in 12 fascinating stages. Move over Nemo. Heck. Watch out Captain Nimoy! This is Jules Verne stuff, by golly. Hang on!
Stage 1: Let’s start with a simple product – a box of gleaming golden buttons, sitting on a shelf in China on the other side of the world. Doesn’t sound like much. But, fact is, someone out there really wants those luminous objects, and someone needs to figure out a way to get them from one end of the globe to another. Delivering them to market is quite the process, and behind this process, an epic journey. Behind the journey – an intricate system – a dynamic network of players who have what it takes to deliver on time. It’s a mighty tale for such a tiny, seemingly inconsequential carton of stuff – an epic tale that unfolds everyday. The tale of cargo making a fantastic globetrotting trek from one end of the earth to another. Wow!
And so, dear OTD Blog readers, we’d like to introduce you to the man in search of this little box of golden buttons, John Smith, owner of John Smith’s Sharp Shirts in Champaign, IL.
John Smith is dedicated to his business and his customers. Lately his customers have been requesting that his company produce a shirt fitted with a little more flash. John’s a picky guy, and he’s very good with budgets. So he’s not about to settle on just any gold button. It’s gotta be the right one. Of course, John wants to save money and increase his bottom line, but he also wants to find the appropriate accessory for his new product.
So John Smith does some research. He goes online & Googles “gold shirt button manufacturers” near and far – some in his own backyard, many across the US, and others around the word. Eventually he comes across a button company in China that manufactures and sells quality gold buttons with the right look, luster, and at the just the right price. The Company is called Buddha’s Button Hut, located in Hangzhou, China. Not only does John like the price, he also digs their catchy name.
So John Smith, owner of John Smith’s Sharp Shirts in Champaign, IL calls the Buddha Button Hut factory in Hangzhou, China and purchases 20 cartons of Buddha Button Hut gold buttons from the company.
Stage 2: Buddha’s Button Hut are happy to oblige. The order is placed, and the manager of Buddha’s Button Hut dispatches one of his employees to pull 20 cartons worth from their inventory and prepare them for shipment across the globe to Champaign, IL.
The order is received by the Warehouse Manager at the Buddha Hut Button factory, who proceeds to call up his favorite Freight Forwarder in the USA.
The US based Freight Forwarder answers the phone, and asks “Hi Ya, Buddha Hut! Whad’ya got?”
Buddha’s Button Hut, at first taken aback by the friendly US Freight Forwarder’s audacious American personality, eventually gathers himself together, and tells the Freight Forwarder he has 20 cartons of golden buttons that need to get from Hangzhou, China to John Smith’s Sharp Shirt Factory in Champaign, IL in the good old US of A.
The friendly American freight forwarder laughs at first and says, “My, isn’t that cute? Cute as a button you might say. I’m a BIG fan of John Smith’s Sharp Shirts. No…shh…kidding. So what the heck. Let’s do this. I’ll arrange for a truck to arrive at the Buddha Button Hut factory to pick up your 20 cartons of golden buttons, & he’ll bring them back to my Chinese Freight Consolidator in nearby Shanghai.”
The Buddha Button Hut Warehouse Manager is intrigued by the friendly freight forwarder’s uniquely American sense of humor. He knows that his cargo is in good hands. Cross cultural contact has been established, and the heroic journey of cargo begins.
Stage 3: This is good news for the Chinese Freight Consolidator in Shanghai, who, it turns out, has been itching to send some stuff to the USA, but he’s had to wait for one more shipment to come along to help fill up his steel cargo container.
The US Freight Forwarder coordinates with his Chinese Freight Consolidator on a ton of small shipments every day, just like the one placed by Buddha’s Button Hut. But they won’t sign off on anything – and they can’t send anything out to sea – until their cargo container is completely stacked full of stuff. Anything less would be a waste of money.
Now, just to give you a bit of context, dear OTD Blog readers, these cargo containers are those 20 X 40 foot colorful containers you often see stacked along waterways around the country. If you’ve ever crossed into Manhattan along the Jersey turnpike over the Port of New York-New Jersey, or even driven over the west Shoreway in Cleveland, Ohio, you’ll know what we’re talking about. These sizable metal boxes have revolutionized how we share goods & services with one another across the globe. It also costs a lot of money to ship freight from China to the USA, so better to pack it with as much stuff as you possibly can. This is extremely important.
So inside the cargo container go the 20 cartons of golden Buddha Button Hut buttons, along with many other objects bound for various locations in the US and North America.
Stage 4: Once enough products have been accumulated to pack the container, a truck will arrive to take the container to the closest waterfront (in this case, the Shanghai Pier) to prepare it for the upcoming overseas voyage. It is here at the seaport where the cargo container will be loaded onto an epic ocean vessel, and soon set sail for the USA. But this is no pleasure cruise. This is high stakes international commerce. All precautions have been made to ensure the safety of the 20 cartons of golden Buddha Hut buttons, and everything else crammed into that colorful metal box.
Stage 5: Enter the ocean Vessel/Steam Ship that will carry the cargo overseas. It’s enormous, and soon it will leave the far eastern shores for a 3 week adventure to the USA – the land of cheeseburgers and blue jeans, rock & roll and SUV’s, all night radio, speakeasies, and late night juke joints.
The cargo ship is massive, the size of a small city in fact. Big enough to hold an average of 3500 more of these colorful 40 foot freight containers crammed full of stuff.
Finally, the overseas journey begins, and continues for an average of three weeks. It’s a wild ocean voyage, fraught with enormous ocean waves, storms, whale chases, epic sunrises and sunsets, shooting stars, maybe even a castaway on a life raft, or an intergalactic wandering spaceman, or two. Who knows? It’s a mysterious trek, really. [Insert epic footage of the high seas here.]
Stage 6: Now let’s jump ahead three weeks. The grand Ocean Vessel has finally arrived safely in one of the USA’s beautiful, worldclass seaports, the Port of Long Beach, CA, in fact.
Stage 7: The cargo vessel is unloaded of all its contents once it arrives at the Port of Long Beach. The containers are taken off the ship and put on trucks where they will then be delivered to nearby warehouses in & around the Port of Long Beach. Once inside the dock, all of the contents inside the cargo container will be separated according to their next destination.
Everything is accounted for. Every item is earmarked, charted, and mapped in relation to one another for the best possible delivery route on the clock – the most cost effective next step – the most logical course of action, adherent to the latest tools and technology.
Remember, John Smith’s Sharp Shirts is located in Champaign, IL, and the 20 cartons of golden Buddha Button Hut buttons are currently two thousand miles away in the Port of Long Beach, CA. The fastest, most cost effective way to get the buttons to John Smith’s Sharp Shirt factory is by train.
Stage 8: And so, once again, the 20 cartons of golden buttons will be consolidated with other cargo from parts unknown into a full Railroad Container where they will then hit the rails headed for Champaign, IL.
It is here on the heavy shoulders of the iron web in the great railyard, close to the warehouse, where the 20 cartons of shiny golden buttons will come to understand their true calling as they are loaded on a train and shipped out for delivery to the John Smith Sharp Shirt factory in the heart of the country. The genuine luster of these buttons will finally be revealed, and they will truly begin to shine in anticipation of the end of their journey.
Stage 9: Jump ahead a couple of days and here comes the train, pulling into Champaign. “Wuuaaaa! Wuuuaaaaa!,” the conductor leans on the horn and steps on the brakes. Once the train is docked, the 20 cartons of gold Buddha Button Hut buttons will be unloaded yet again, only this time they will be put on a freight truck. The freight truck will then deliver the buttons to a nearby warehouse.
Stage 10: Once the freight truck arrives at the warehouse, it will get offloaded yet again, and separated among roughly 10 to 20 other orders that are also included in the container.
Stage 11: Enter again the friendly American Freight Forwarder from Stage 2 of the Buddha Button Hut’s gold Button globetrot – the one with the classic American sense of humor. His phone is about to ring again. Only, this time, the call he’s getting is to inform him that his freight (the 20 cartons of golden Buddha Button Hut buttons) has finally arrived for delivery to the John Smith Sharp Shirt factory.
Stage 12: The freight forwarder is smiling. He might even be jumping up and down at this point, overjoyed and tickled pink – not only with the wonders of this fascinating system of international cargo that he participates in daily – but also because he himself is actually among the long list of consumers who recently placed an order for a nice new John Smith Sharp Shirt with the Custom Golden buttons – to be worn on Christmast Day! He can barely contain his excitement. But once he cools down, he’ll arrange delivery of the 20 cartons of shiny golden buttons to the John Smith Sharp Shirt Factory in Champaign, IL. Mission Accomplished. Home at last!
And from there, folks, the rest is history. Happy consumers across the land will show up at Holiday parties sporting new John Smith Sharp Shirts with the sparkling golden buttons. None of them really (except perhaps the friendly US Freight Forwarder, and you, of course, now that we’ve schooled you) will know the epic journey those buttons have made before adorning his person.
So there you have it. Everything we wear, eat, drive, use, buy, fall asleep on – you name it – comes from someplace else. And behind every product is a great story, full of colorful characters who bring these goods to market everyday.
Welcome to the new On Time Delivery & Warehouse Website! Come on in! Have a look around. Pretty snazzy, eh? We like it, and we’re confident that you will too. We’re On Time Delivery and Warehouse, Cleveland’s premier customs bonded, TSA certified, FDA registered, 3rd Party Logistics company specializing in Warehousing, Distribution, Transloading, Consolidation, Deconsolidation, Transportation and much much more.
After many years with the same online digs, we figured it was time for an upgrade. Since the company was founded over 35 years ago, we’ve kept pace with the ever expanding world of Global Logistics and the business of shipping and warehousing. Our website, however, was beginning to show it’s age. So we called up our friends at Cleveland Web Design firm, Go Media & set the wheels in motion to rebuild our website. After careful consideration, we’ve endeavored to create a site that is not only easy to use and navigate, but is also convenient for you, our customer, in determining the status of your freight. On top of that we hope the website is also informative. The Logistics business is broad and dynamic and comes complete with its own vocabulary and terminology. We hope our new website will help you navigate the business easier as you browse our site.
In fact that’s one of the big things we’re going to touch upon regularly with this, the On Time Delivery & Warehouse Blog. Expect a steady stream of posts exploring, explaining, and celebrating the dynamic world of Global Logistics.
And we invite you to have a look around.
Suggestion: begin by exploring the Main Navigation on the Home Page. There you’ll be able to navigate the dynamic world of shipping as you navigate our site. Start with the About Us page. Get to know our story, from the very beginning, right up to the present day.
Peruse our list of services. It’s a healthy list at that: Warehousing & Distribution, Pickup & Delivery, Cross docking, Transloading, Inventory Management, Distribution, Value Added Services, Short & Long Term Storage, Warehouse Fulfillment Services, Consolidation & Deconsolidation, C.F.S. (Container Freight Station) access, Indoor and Outdoor storage, even Office space with Public Warehousing available for lease. We offer all of these services under one roof at our 90,000 indoor facility and 5 acre outdoor facility respectively located in Cleveland, Ohio just around the corner from Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, The Port of Cleveland and the CSX & Norfolk Southern Rail Yards. Have it all at your fingertips with our new online management systems.
Keep tabs on your ocean and air freight from anywhere in the world with our new CFS I.T., Container & Air Waybill Search functionality. Need to see if your freight arrived? Invoicing? It’s in the CFS Search. The Search cuts to the chase, just like us. We’re proud to say that we’ve now got a website that reflects that.
Thanks for stopping by the new On Time Delivery Website Blog. Be sure to check back for regular updates. We take pride in serving you today, and we look forward to working with you in the future.