COVID-19 changed the business world in several ways when it first arrived. Despite the vaccine’s arrival, the pandemic’s lingering effects still permeate many businesses.
The shipping industry is one that saw significant changes due to COVID-19. In particular, the pandemic had a sizeable effect on cross-docking.
What is cross-docking, you ask? Most standard shipping operations use short-term storage for packages during shipping. Cross-docking cuts out this middle storage.
Instead, cross-docking workers unload a shipment from its original transport. From there, they immediately move it to the next transport. This way, they ensure faster shipping speeds.
But, the COVID-19 pandemic brought several changes to way businesses shipped goods. These changes made a significant impact on cross-docking services. We’ll explore three of the most enduring effects in the guide below.
1. An Increase In Demand For Cross-Docking
COVID-19 brought a significant spike in demand for cross-docking services. This demand arose from two primary sources.
First, many businesses adapted to a delivery-based business model to cope with lockdowns. Following Amazon’s lead, these businesses relied on fast deliveries to remain competitive. Since the cross-docking warehouse system provided swifter transportation, this model earned higher demand.
Another reason for this practice’s growth was the change in storage systems. Most retailers relied on short-term storage solutions before the pandemic. However, new regulations on storage methods made these systems more dangerous to practice.
As a result, cross-docking services stepped in to fill the void. It seems likely that this demand will continue in coming years.
2. Dealing With The Labor Shortage
The logistics industry has always had a high turnover rate. But, the outbreak of COVID caused tremendous labor shortages in many industries. Unfortunately, this shortage hit the logistics world hard.
What does this mean for a cross-dock warehouse? In short, it means that although demand for these services is high, the number of drivers remains low. Warehouses are struggling to keep up with the demand that the market places on them.
But, several businesses offer innovative solutions to deal with the labor shortage. These services may help your warehouse manage any worker shortages it suffers.
3. Increased Automation In Cross-Docking
Many warehouses used digital automation as a way to supplement their missing labor. Cross-docking warehouses also began using this method.
Automation doesn’t only make up for lost labor, either. Instead, automation enhances your operation’s efficiency. Automation solutions can sort packages into their appropriate categories.
This sorting allows for a more streamlined approach for sorting outbound packages. It increases accuracy and eliminates the possibility of human error.
Consider Using Our Cross-Docking Services!
As you can see, cross-docking faces many challenges and advantages because of COVID-19. The demand for cross-docking services has made the business valuable across several industries.
Your business may need to contact a cross-docking service for its shipping needs. If so, consider working with our warehouses!
We provide several services to help businesses ensure safe delivery. We also utilize efficient methods to ensure your package reaches the correct destination. Contact us today to learn more!