Chain Reaction is Sourcing Journal’s discussion series with industry executives to get their take on today’s logistics challenges and learn about ways their company is working to keep the flow of goods moving Here, Carl Wasinger, founder & CEO of Smart Warehousing, discusses how the company is helping brands and retailers cuts down on transit times and transportation costs with modern technology.
Name: Carl Wasinger
Title: Founder & CEO
Company: Smart Warehousing
What industries do you primarily serve?
Founded in 2001, Smart Warehousing is a technology enabled warehousing and fulfillment company with a growing nationwide footprint serving both e-commerce and retail companies.
With over 21 years of industry experience, we serve 12 Industries from food and beverage to pet food to electronics in all channels.
Which industry do you think has the most to teach about improving their supply chain logistics?
The food and beverage industry has the most to teach about improving supply chain logistics because outside of growing consumer expectations, there is an absolute need for 1 to 2-day shipping to maintain product integrity, especially with cold and frozen products. This is more vital than in any other sector because companies want to avoid product loss and maintain a positive brand reputation.
What are the main things brands and retailers could do (or stop doing) right now that would immediately improve logistics?
To immediately improve logistics, brands and retailers can start placing their products in warehousing facilities closest to their end users. We find that distributed inventory drastically cuts down on transit times and transportation costs.
When it comes to supply chain logistics challenges, there are things companies can fix, and things that are beyond their control. How can the former help the latter?
Not only are healthy thresholds for inventory minimums critical, but they are also something companies can fix to have some control over the uncontrollable. Having access to a quality Warehouse Management System is necessary to help manage this.
In fact, with a good technology system, you’re notified immediately if a truck doesn’t arrive on time or if inventory doesn’t ship as expected. This can help prevent potential damage to your brand by rectifying the issue before the customer sees it.
What is the one thing brands and retailers could be doing to make better use of technology to improve logistics?
One thing brands and retailers could do is ensure their technology stacks are modernized. When data is fragmented and stored in the cloud, it’s difficult to access. When your data is housed more efficiently with a modern technology stack, it’s much easier to access and manipulate for brands and retailers.
What is your company doing to make the movement of goods more sustainable?
The movement of goods should be minimized to achieve sustainability. Smart Replenishment—a program that enables retail and e-commerce brands to scale without needing to manage the logistics hassle—does just that. The distributed inventory is placed closest to the end user so that the focus becomes more on last mile and speed of delivery with lower transportation costs than long haul movement of goods.
As the holidays approach, what are you doing to make sure your clients’ needs are met?
While there is always unpredictability, we have perfected our processes that prepare us for the holiday season every year. From ensuring proper staffing and training, to working collaboratively with our clients on their upcoming forecasts, and taking advantage of our nationwide footprint, we’ve been able to continue to meet our customers’ needs throughout the busiest time of year.
Are you optimistic about the state of supply chains in the next few years?
Through Covid, we learned that the supply chain is always going to be essential. Now, we see the supply chain covered more in the news, and many new graduates entering the industry with supply chain degrees that didn’t exist 10 years ago. As we see an influx of talent in the supply chain sector—alongside modern technology—we’re optimistic about the future of the supply chain industry.