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Festive season logistics: Here is all you need to know to ace the rush

It’s that time of the year again! Time for the Big Billion Sales, the Great Indian Sale, and discounts in almost every retailer and ecommerce platform across the country.

After a two month dull period during the lockdown, ecommerce has seen a revival since July and stands at 42 lakhs shipments a day. An all time high demand is expected this festive season given the pandemic situation.

According to Redsheer consulting, this year’s festive sales are likely to grow 50% year on year and reach $4 billion value.

They also estimate that 50% shoppers this season will be from tier 2 cities and beyond markets.

This calls for a ramping up of your supply chain infrastructure, technologies and your workforce!

Here are the possible hurdles you will face on the way and how to tackle them –

Inventory Management

The Worst nightmare of any retailer ( ecommerce or otherwise) is running out of popular inventories and having a surplus number of the not so popular ones.

Considering your production and delivery lead times as well as sales forecast, you should draft a procurement plan, as the festival dates are known well in advance.

Warehouse Inventory management software can help you make sales forecasts, tell you about the product life cycle, purchase order lead time and so on. This can in turn help in managing stocks and preparing oneself ahead of time.

Workforce Management

Increased demand for goods and high customer expectations calls for a larger workforce, especially in the logistics front.

Festive season, along with the increased competition, may lead to shortage of workforce. Thus, it’s important to make your festive recruitments well in advance.

Managing workforce expectations is another challenge. You need to motivate your employees to work extra hours and reward them with festival incentives. This is especially true for drivers and cleaners – they prefer to stay off the road to spend time with family, leading to increased scarcity

Warehouse Management

Festive season often bears witness to companies gripling with warehouse space, with stocks lined up outside their hubspot leading to delay in deliveries.

You can always look for multi user and flexi warehouse services. At Navata, we provide flexi warehouse services across tier 1 as well tier 2 and 3 hubs to cater to your surplus festive demand. We also provide warehouse management services along with it.

This is also a good time to upgrade your current warehouse management tech. One can use RFID technology to track and manage goods. The scanners and tags help us track the items going in and out of the warehouse. It is free of human errors, faster and more efficient.

Adaptation of automated storage and retrieval systems is another solution to deal with the shortage of storage space. This technology consists of lifters and conveyors etc., which help in reducing space occupied by aisles and at the same time minimize labor and maximize the utilization of space.

Last Mile Logistics

Last mile logistics becomes even more challenging during festival season. You not only need to cater to the increased demands from the tier 2 and 3 cities but also the high customer expectation of fast deliveries.

Same day deliveries are a norm today, irrespective of the geographics. Going for a third party logistics service (3PL) would prove to be much cheaper.

Navata with its presence in tier 1, 2 and 3 cities and its route optimisation technology, standard operations SOPs, and delivery systems provides exactly that. We are a specialist in south and west express transportation with reach to every pin code in these states.

You also need to plan for the increased demand within the big cities. Use technology for seamless end to end experience from pick up, smart tracking, delivery followup to return submission.

You should definitely consider using machine learning apps that tell the delivery person which route is more apt and hassle free at the time. This adaptation of technology has proved to improve overall productivity by 30-35% as compared to the manual process. Navata SCS Local is a right offering for someone looking for the optimal partner with operational expertise and supported tech.

The Corona Factor

There are localised lockdowns across the country. You should also factor this while optimizing your delivery routes.

This is definitely a challenging and exciting time for your business and you may need guidance to ace the process. Navata’s vetted partner eco-system provides you an expert advice team from each sector of supply chain management catering across industries.

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