Achieve Fulfillment Nirvana Conduct a SMART Audit
Customers love excellent service:
They like their orders delivered on time, intact and most importantly for a fair price.
Meeting these customer expectations can be done so through your fulfillment team running smooth processes.
Do you know where your fulfillment team can improve its processes to make the difference and please your customers?
This might not be as easy as you think. How your customers perceive your service might be totally different to what you consider is important. The only way to solve this is to conduct an audit of your fulfillment processes.
How can you create this audit and how can you match it to your fulfillment goals?
1. Be SMART With Your Goals
While some businesses have goals, they don’t have SMART objectives:
SMART means that your goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relative and Timely.
When you can’t create goals that match the SMART philosophy, then you are not going to be able to achieve anything that is meaningful.
Creating a smart goal isn’t difficult, an example would be:
“We expect to deliver all orders over $50 to the customer’s address, within three days of order being placed, and to do so every month.”
Give SMART goal setting a go and see how it turns your organization into a focused and productive machine.
2. Create A Dry Run Order
Next you need to assess how your current processes are matching your expected SMART objectives.
- Do this first on a couple of dry run orders.
- Do it on a few items to make sure that you see an average performance.
If you do it with one order, you might be misled as staff attempt to push through that order because they know they are being watched.
Alternatively, something out of their control might affect the order (like the sudden influx of real life orders) and this can skew the results.
Therefore, conducting five to ten dry run orders let you see what to expect for the average time to delivery.
3. View Historic Ordering Data
Your third step should be to look at your historic performance.
Look at a small proportion of your historic delivery records and see what the results are compared to your SMART objectives.
For each order in the past you should have detailed records of when the order was received, when it was packaged and how long it took to get to the customer once it left your warehouse.
This information is vital because it tells you where there might be an issue within your fulfillment process.
4. Contact Customers
There is no one better to tell you how you are performing than speaking to your customers.
Give them a call and ask them for their feedback.
- Did they like the packaging?
- Did they like the delivery?
- What are their comments?
Make sure you have all this information, even go as far as to document the responses in a spreadsheet then you will be able to gain insights and provide improved service.
5. Collect All The Data Together
Next you need to analyze all the information that you have collected and compare that to the baseline (SMART Objectives) that you have previously set.
Look to see if you have met your objectives and if not, why that might be.
6. Look For Opportunities To Improve
Taking what you have learnt from the analysis of your dry runs, historic data and customer surveys – you need to look at what you can improve.
This should include the addition of more SMART objectives and goals to create new processes and functions within the business.
An audit is a fantastic way for you to create a fulfillment process that meets your goals and customer expectations.
This requires a lot of information, time and effort but the results you can achieve afterwards can be outstanding.
- Have you taken an audit of your fulfillment system?
- What were the results?
- Run five to ten dry run orders and collect performance records
- From the past three months, examine the fulfillment performance of about 10% of your orders
- Conduct a customer survey
Ready to take grow internationally, get in touch with Floship for a free Fulfillment Audit and see how partnering with an experienced fulfillment partner can grow your bottom line.