What is a third-party logistics company?
As retailers get more deeply involved in the processes of merchandising and selling their products, they often find that the challenges of dealing with supply chain logistics become overwhelming – not to mention expensive. So what happens? They outsource parts and pieces – or even the entire operation – to a third-party. Third-party logistics companies (also called 3PL) companies exist to assist companies in their ongoing quest to get the right products, to the right places, at the right times, in the right conditions.
What specific services does Diakon Logistics offer?
At Diakon, we are widely known for our home delivery services, but we also have complete capabilities around transportation, warehousing/cross-docking, installation, aftermarket support, and reverse logistics. We are a complete logistics solutions provider for our retailer clients.
What are the benefits of outsourcing?
When you consider outsourcing for the very first time, it can be a daunting decision-making process. Your mind may wander to all the things that could go wrong when outsourcing. In reality, if you’re working with a quality 3PL provider, you stand to benefit in many ways. Read our specific page about the value of outsourcing logistics.
Why would a retailer want to outsource its home delivery operations?
Home delivery is a critical piece in the logistics puzzle because it’s one of the only times where your brand “physically” encounters your customers, on their turf. Home delivery brings with it an extraordinary opportunity to “wow” your customers with impeccable service, care, and attention to detail. It’s also, unfortunately, an area where many providers fall short. The reasons to outsource this important piece of your logistics are many – as long as you find the right provider:
- Leverage your resources: It is a fact that by outsourcing home delivery operations to an outside firm, you will save valuable company time and resources. Instead of dealing with merchandise deliveries, scheduling those deliveries, sending staff out on deliveries, rescheduling no-shows, and handling the many other details around this service, you’re simply able to continue on with the business of merchandising and sales.
- Benefit from expertise: Many companies just don’t have the personnel to handle the home delivery process. Sure, they may have the staff to do it, but the staff may not be knowledgeable or experienced in all phases of this work. Rather than spending time training, and living through the mistakes that are bound to happen when you have inexperienced people taking on a delivery job, outsourcing lets you pass the task off to people who are experienced and specifically trained to handle it.
- Maintain your brand: Your 3PL provider can literally become an extension of your brand. That’s what we do at Diakon Logistics. Our people become a very natural extension of your team – wearing a uniform with your name on it, driving a truck that has your logo on it, and treating your customers and your merchandise exactly as you would want it to be treated.
- Save money: Probably the most important reason to outsource your home delivery operations to a 3PL provider is to save money. The right 3PL company has processes, technology, and systems in place to run home deliveries in ways that your organization would probably never have thought of. That’s because it’s their jobs to make sure everything runs efficiently and it’s in their own best interest to operate at a high level of efficiency – both for their own margins and to remain cost competitive for their clients.
How do I know that my customers are getting the best delivery service with Diakon Logistics?
Diakon Logistics works with each client to develop a set of key performance indicators (KPIs) that are tied to your specific operational goals. These KPIs are measured and reported daily to ensure our delivery service is standing up to your ideals. What’s more, we also measure the satisfaction of your customers – the people we deliver to every day. We enlist the help of a third party surveyor to elicit feedback from your customers around areas of service that are important to you, and we use these results to prove to you that your customers are getting the very best.
What is the difference between a “dedicated” and “co-mingled” model?
A dedicated model means we are completely, 100% dedicated to a particular retailer partner. We have specific trucks branded and personnel in uniform with the retailer’s logo, working specifically on logistics assignments for that retailer. A co-mingled model, on the other hand, is where product is shipped into one of our warehouses by several retailers, generally through e-commerce orders, and is co-mingled together with other retailers’ products to make up a full truck of deliveries. With the co-mingled model, your merchandise is delivered with the same high-level of customer service, but you don’t have the brand identification of a dedicated model.
Is my business eligible for a dedicated or co-mingled model?
Dedicated models are generally retailers with more than one store, several deliveries per day, five-to-seven days each week, and sales revenues above $15 million (typically). Co-mingled models are usually retailers who sell through e-commerce and have a smaller store with a few deliveries per week.
What does it mean when you say you offer same-day delivery?
If you’re interested in offering same-day delivery to your customers, Diakon Logistics will assist you in evaluating the potential and developing the operations to make it happen. Through our experience and technology, we are able to create customized programs like these for retailers in specific markets with specific criteria. When we can design a solution that works for both parties, the same-day delivery model is something that can truly set apart a furniture, bedding, or appliance retailer from competitors and set a very positive impression in the minds of customers who are anxious to have their big purchase in hand.
What type of technology do you use to track shipments and routes?
We utilize the newest generation of routing technologies, which is considered the standard for companies whose delivery points change daily. In addition to routing, this technology allows for the integration of auto-call and provides real time, global view of fleet movement and delivery status across an entire enterprise, resulting in maximum routing efficiencies to reduce costs and improve service. We also employ a proprietary web-based software application used for the analysis and reporting of customer order data and developing customized performance reports.
How do you know if my customers/consumers are satisfied?
Each and every delivery that Diakon Logistics performs includes a follow up customer survey, performed via email, telephone conversation, tele-prompt, or mail in survey. These results are used to measure and report on the satisfaction of your customers based on criteria that you have established.
Where is Diakon Logistics located?
Diakon Logistics is a national company with operation authority in all 50 states and Canada.
Does Diakon Logistics make deliveries 7 days a week?
Yes, we are able to structure five-to-seven days per week of deliveries, depending on the retailer’s model. We are here to meet the needs of your operations as best we can.
What types of industries does Diakon Logistics handle?
Our focus is on retailers and manufacturers of “big ticket” items, including appliances, bedding, building supplies, electronics and furniture. We work with these types of companies to improve their logistics operations, resulting in greater efficiency and profitability.
What types of deliveries does Diakon Logistics make?
We offer a range of delivery service options, including white glove and standard in-home delivery for high-end furniture, appliances, consumer electronics, lawn and garden, sporting goods, outdoor patio, home office, and business office furniture. You can also choose affordable drop-shipments for items such as flooring, outdoor seasonal, and construction supplies.
How do you ensure that your delivery teams are reliable drivers and people?
All of our home-delivery teams are highly experienced and qualified to meet appropriate Department of Transportation (DOT) qualifications, including an extensive criminal background check, drug tests, and verifications of eligibility to work in the United States. Moreover, our delivery teams are held to extremely high standards of customer satisfaction – so much so that their pay is incentive-based to reward for quality customer care. At Diakon Logistics, our delivery teams work under the idea that every day is “Mrs. Jones’ Day.”
How do you manage your delivery teams?
Each Diakon logistics location has on-site management and staff responsible for overseeing the location and its delivery teams.
Do retailers lose control of their “brand” when using Diakon Logistics?
We know how important your brand is to your retail company. That’s why we work hard to ensure it never gets lost in the process. We offer dedicated models of service in which our people become a physical extension of your team – wearing uniforms branded with your company’s name and driving trucks specially outfitted with your company logo. We’re not in the business of promoting Diakon Logistics. We’re in the business of promoting your brand.
What makes Diakon Logistics different from other delivery or logistics companies?
We like the saying, “the difference is in the details.” To us, the details matter. Whether it’s taking the extra step to offer solutions to your problems, going the extra mile to make sure Mrs. Jones is happy, investing in the latest technology to ensure your logistics remains extremely efficient, or just giving that appliance one final polish on our way out the door … we put the details first.
Does Diakon Logistics have warehousing and cross-docking capabilities?
Diakon Logistics currently operates many warehousing and cross-docking facilities for our clients, and we have the ability to open a new facility anywhere in the United States, as needed by our clients.
Have other questions that we haven’t answered?