You don’t need to be a Trekkie to know the iconic phrase, “Beam me up, Scotty.” Whether it was a peaceful return from an unexplored planet or removal from a hostile environment, the Enterprise crew knew they’d be aboard their ship in seconds. Unfortunately, there’s no burr-accented Scotsman waiting to push a few buttons and transport our earthly cargo from point A to point B instantly.
Instead, supply chain disruptions continue, fueled by high demand, inadequate infrastructure, labor constraints, and reduced capacity. According to the New York Times, supply chain chaos may be the new normal because it will take more than time to decrease its volatility. It needs investments in technology, truck drivers, ships, and warehouses. These costly investments may be difficult to make given the uncertain economic landscape. In the meantime, organizations must find ways to improve shipping efficiency to lower costs and meet customer delivery expectations.
Not only do organizations have to contend with transport delays, but they must also find ways to protect their bottom line. Depending on the specific supply chain, companies may see an increase in shipping costs of 25% in 2022. Warehousing may increase as much as 20%.
Trucking is the primary transport method within the U.S., and its cost rose almost 24% in 2021. The rise was attributed to the following:
- Fuel. Up 35%
- Repair and maintenance. 18% higher
- Wages. Up almost 11%
The same pressures will probably continue through 2022 and into 2023.
With more people purchasing online, the last-mile delivery costs associated with eCommerce also increased. Whether it is companies such as UPS and FedEx or private businesses, costs jumped 15%.
Large warehouse facilities require land. Some facilities can be closer to customers where land may be available; however, warehousing must be near ports where ships dock to unload freight and airlines land to offload cargo. Real estate is simply unavailable in ports such as New York City and Los Angeles, resulting in higher storage costs.
Los Angeles reports a 1% vacancy rate. New York/New Jersey reports a 2.4% vacancy. With storage at a premium, warehousing costs have increased an average of 20%.
Rail, Air, and Sea
Shipping cargo by rail increased almost 20%, and air freight followed with a 19% hike. Sea transport increased by more than 25%. Regardless of the transport method, businesses can plan on spending more to transport and store their inventory in 2022 and beyond.
Improving Shipping Efficiencies 2022
Companies have limited control over shipping costs. However, they control how inventory stores and ships. For businesses trying to maintain profitability, plastic nesting trays are a versatile option for improved shipping efficiency. Nesting trays work with automated picking systems and offer short-term storage for industries such as automotive, pharmaceutical, electronics, and general merchandising.
Plastic is not always bad for the environment. Our trays use polypropylene materials that do not release harmful chemicals under extreme temperatures. Whether in transit or waiting at a port, our products are safe from weather extremes. Although the nesting trays last 30 to 50 times longer than corrugated ones, they can be ground up and reused when they reach their end of life.
Lightweight and Durable
With double-digit increases in transportation costs, shipping containers shouldn’t add unnecessary weight. Our plastic nesting trays have a high strength-to-weight ratio as compared to other materials. The corrugated plastic is light but durable enough to withstand the harshest environments.
The trays are easy to transport and store. Hand holes make for ergonomic lifting and carrying. They offer the right balance of durability and usability for any application.
Flexcon’s nesting trays come with holes to ensure that moisture drains quickly. The holes also provide an easy way to clean and maintain trays. Cleaned trays can be drained to prevent moisture from remaining on the trays.
Our nesting trays come in a range of sizes from a 18x18x6 tray to a 30.9×18.8×9 tray or larger. They also come in six different standard and more custom colors, making it possible to color-code your shipping or storage trays.
Trays come with or without lids. Lids can be attached or detached. Attached lids can include tamper-evident security features to reduce in-transit loss. Lids provide added protection from the elements. They also minimize the content’s exposure to possible contaminants while in storage.
Added features include placards or labels for easy identification. Businesses can add QR codes or RFID to expedite the tracking of trays. Pads and plates on the tray bottom add strength and protection.
With ongoing supply chain disruptions, unexpected changes may require custom solutions. We can handle custom size and style requests to help optimize operations. We can hot-stamp logos onto trays for added brand awareness.
Flexcon’s plastic nesting trays work with automated systems. They will fit standard high-speed automated storage and retrieval systems. Whether it’s barcodes or RFID tags, the nesting trays can deliver seamless operations.
Empty plastic nesting trays can be stored or shipped flat. Their compact size reduces the amount of costly warehouse space required for storage.
Efficient Shipping 2022
For most companies, navigating a supply chain with unpredictable disruptions presents challenges. How do they maintain a level of operational efficiency to ensure profitability? How do they adjust for rising shipping costs without reducing their profit margins?
Much like the Enterprise as it explored new worlds, business owners find themselves looking at an uncharted landscape without a Scottish engineer manning the transport controls. Organizations can focus on what they can control. They can look to their operations to find ways to improve shipping efficiency and to make investments that increase profitability.
Using the right shipping and storage containers can lower costs and improve shipping efficiencies. Why not explore our range of plastic nesting trays and discover how they can work for your business? For more information, go to PostalTotes.