What you didn’t know about bulk storage
Warehousing is far more dynamic and complicated than it might seem. One big learning we took from Covid times was to be more flexible in our offerings so as to be able to offer our clients secure, timeous storage to suit their needs and products.
The logistics arm of Unitrans manages two types of warehousing: Specialised warehouses that are customer specific and our own ‘non-exclusive’ warehouses.
Our specialised warehousing and logistics services are customer-focused — we take over our customers’ facilities and their outbound operations, which could include everything from the actual warehousing infrastructure supply to, contract management as well as long-distance and secondary transport through our extensive bulk haulage fleet.
Increased flexibility post-Covid
As mentioned earlier, the big learning we took from Covid times was to be more flexible in our offerings. This meant that during those times of restrictions and trade uncertainty we learned to be highly tuned into the types of warehouses our clients required, what spaces were available in which to store products, as well as being more flexible in the leases we offer. This meant that back then we were able to open up warehouses when needed and offer those facilities at shorter notice than we perhaps would have in the past.
Many of our customers import raw materials, something which was obviously highly impacted during those times when ports were closed. As this article points out, when ports gradually reopened, shipping agents were selective as to what would be transported on ships, and shipping rates increased exponentially.
These factors made it difficult to get the full containers required to be imported, but our customers continue production, which made for an even bigger need for warehousing — we needed to ensure that there was space where we could store customer products when the stock could not be distributed and they needed facilities to store inventory.
Smoother Logistics Management
We run food-grade warehouses and ensured strict adherence to hygiene requirements necessitated by the Covid-19 pandemic. In addition, we employ a three-shift pattern to keep things running while being highly cognisant of worker well-being and adhering to legal limits for working hours while maintaining seven-day operations.
Going forward we will continue to work to identify additional warehouses that suit our customers’ specific requirements, particularly when it comes to food-grade storage.
Our aim is to keep our customers’ products secure and protected in new purpose-built and rented facilities in the right locations for smooth distribution on the most efficient haulage costs. Through it all our customers come first and we remain adaptable to their needs and expectations.
Read more about our flexible warehousing options and (what we learned from Covid times in this regard) in this article in Engineering News by Cameron Mackay.