Direct Store Delivery (DSD) operations are challenging due to the volume, pace, complexity, and physical nature of the work. Typically in the perishable food industry, there is some inefficiency in DSD-related operations whether on routes, in plants, in depots, or in distribution centers. Addressing these inefficiencies can have significant, direct, operational and financial benefits to companies.
Perishable food industry DSD operations are constantly performing at a high speed which makes it difficult to stop and review operations to identify opportunities for improvement, let alone have the time to implement those improvements. And it’s challenging to look at entire operations from end-to-end. And it is also hard to keep up with what others are doing that could also be beneficial.
Small improvements with widespread adoption can have a big impact when multiplied across operations and over time. A trivial change in manufacturing or transportation could provide a significant benefit to depot and route operations. A small change that saves a sales rep a minute or two at a stop may not seem like a lot but taking that improvement and implementing it across all sales reps for all of their stops and then looking over an extended period the timing, dollar savings, and sales rep satisfaction can all become significant. A better way to load trucks may make routes more efficient or a way to speed up or eliminate the receiving process in stops could have a big impact.
It’s also common in DSD operations for there to be a gap between higher and lower performing employees and a difference in performance across different facilities and regions. Companies that identify and implement more efficient workflows, best practices and better tools across their operations have the opportunity to “float all boats”.
Harvest Food Solutions has resources with perishable food DSD workflow expertise and experience that can review operations and provide recommendations for improvement. Harvest also has the ability to provide software and hardware solutions that can be used to implement more efficient DSD workflows.