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“Freight Freak” John B: UPS – More Than Small Package Delivery

July 16, 2019

UPS founder Jim Casey once said, “Determined people working together can do anything.” Hmmm, what would Jim think about his company if he were still alive today.

It was August 28, 1907, the nineteen-year-old young man named James Emmett “Jim” Casey and his friend Claude Ryan borrowed $100 and founded a package delivery service named American Messenger Company.

From those humble beginnings sprang United Parcel Service, known today as UPS. It is the world’s largest and most valuable transportation company, with 454,000 employees. On an average day UPS delivers 16 million packages; FedEx by contrast averages just north of 3.4 million packages per day.

What most don’t realize is that UPS does much more than package delivery. They have a complete book of services that can help manage a company’s entire supply chain including the financing of inventories.

Just recently UPS was chosen as the new primary partner for AMS Fulfillment. After working with all the major carriers and some of the hybrids, AMS was overwhelmingly impressed with not just their small package service, but with the entire suite of services and resources UPS is able to provide. UPS will enable AMS to reach new levels of growth that would have otherwise been much more challenging.

The UPS integrated network is probably the one of the biggest differentiators between UPS and its number one private competitor, FedEx . The model for UPS is hub-and-spoke, where everything is interconnected. All UPS service levels share resources. All the small parcel shipments, both air and ground packages, follow a similar flow from origin to destination. This is much more efficient than all of the competitors and thus one of the reasons AMS finds UPS to be the operational winning choice for their clients.

Other services that UPS provides through Solutions Group include shipping software. AMS knows that the heart of any supply chain are the systems you use to ship, track and manage your business. Plus, it’s a solid solution that connects with everything else, such as warehouse management, order entry, and customer service systems.

SCO (Supply Chain Optimization) is about maximizing the use of your assets with the help of UPS. The keys to a nimble and responsive supply chain are the decisions that you make to manage your business. Your supply chain network needs flexibility at a minimum cost, while allowing you to meet your customers’ needs. The SCO group of UPS resources brings a robust thrust to your organization’s use of resources that mange product and inventories in and out as efficiently and cost effectively as possible.

Combine these resources with the UPS Network Optimization resources which can provide the following services: The UPS Warehouse Assessment & Redesign service can provide valuable implementable recommendations directed toward improving productivity, service and throughput capabilities within your distribution centers. UPS logistics experts follow a prescribed approach and methodology that employ five critical steps as part of the assessment:

1) Data Analysis
2) Identify Improvement Opportunities
3) Prioritize Opportunities
4) Business Case Quantifying Value Proposition for Change
5) Process Improvement “Next Steps”

Inventory Slotting Analysis – Optimizing a warehouse can be a huge project, with warehouse optimization being a fancy term for moving to a new facility, replacing your entire pallet racking system, and/or buying a new fleet of forklifts. The ever-increasing labor costs impact your business’ profitability and growth potential. One of the most important goals should be inventory placement based on velocity thereby allowing for improved efficiencies and service levels.

These services are just the tip of the iceberg of services and resources UPS has to offer in improving your supply chain efficiencies while helping to lower cost. With that said, here are a few other divisions that UPS has among their suite of offerings most don’t know about…

• SCS – Supply Chain Solutions
• International – Global Solutions
• Transportation & Freight
• Customs Brokerage, FTZ and Duty Drawback
• Consulting

In my opinion UPS is much more than a small package ship company, thus best in the industry among all others in this space. If Jim Casey were still here, I’m thinking he may not be all that surprised with what his company has been able to achieve from its modest beginnings of a messenger company, especially as a person who upheld people with inspirational quotes. One that speaks loudest to those accomplishments, most inspiring and so true of his legacy ends with these words:

“In each of us there’s a mysterious innate force that drives us onward. It wants us to do better and be better. Call that force conscience, ambition, determination, will power…or whatever you choose. It constantly whispers in our ear’s words of advice, stimulation, and encouragement. If you will heed that voice and use that inner power, nothing on earth can stop your progress.”

James Emmett “Jim” Casey
Born: March 29, 1888, Candelaria, Nevada
Died: June 6, 1983, Atlanta, GA


About the Freight Freak:

John Bevacqua is the VP of Logistics at AMS Fulfillment. His area of excellence is in creating distribution and fulfillment operations that function as a capable interface between suppliers, retailers, and wholesale distributors. His experience includes developing and leading FedEx/ Kinko’s Distribution Services into the FedEx post acquisition, USA Wireless Technologies, and a top Logistics Management company. He has also worked with third party fulfillment companies, preparing him for his current position with AMS Fulfillment.