Four steps to better management of reusable packaging
Article offers advice on implementing an effective tracking system for pallets, containers, and totes.
A surprising number of companies that employ reusable packaging like pallets, containers, and totes don't know exactly how many they have, where they are, and what their status is. "Managing and Tracking Reusable Assets: A Four-Stage Process," an article published by the Reusable Packaging Association (RPA) on its website ( http://www.reusables.org ), offers some advice on how to fill that information gap.
Written by Keith Schall, director of business systems and technology at Container and Pooling Solutions (CAPS), the article outlines four steps to implementing an effective system for tracking and managing reusable assets. In brief, they include:
- Understand the issues. Users of reusable transport assets should know their shipping destinations, number of containers, where those containers are, utilization rates, annual loss rates, and damage and repair costs. A clearly defined audit process is essential.
- Understand available asset management systems. Whichever method or technology is chosen must provide asset visibility, be easy to use, include bill-back accountability, and have the ability to produce reports and proactive alerts.
- Develop the processes and key performance indicators necessary to create actionable, enforceable data. In addition to inventory and activity reports, review metrics such as loss ratios, system compliance, utilization rates, and dwell-time reports. Then move on to advanced measurements such as loop variance reports that could help reduce capitalization expenses.
- Align and educate stakeholders and implement compliance processes.Identify all stakeholders and make sure everyone receives ongoing communications and adequate training on the processes and any new software or systems in use. Explaining how proper tracking and management of reusable assets saves money will encourage them to buy into the system.
To read the article, go to http://reusables.org/2365/general/managing-and-tracking-reusable-assets-a-four-stage-process.More articles by DC Velocity Staff
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