ESSENTIAL PALLET DELIVERY ADVICE FOR RETAILERS AND WHOLESALERS
Pallet deliveries are generally made using curtain sided heavy goods vehicles. Sizes will range from 7.5 and 18 tonne vehicles which are like your everyday dustbin lorries up to full scale 40ft articulated trucks. The Pallet Track network is very much a national delivery service with local knowledge, meaning here at PDX and at all the network depots we make sure we route the right size vehicle for every delivery.
With the advancements in parcel courier services and systems it has put a lot of pressure on the pallet networks to up their game. As you can imagine delivering palletised goods opposed to parcels is a different game altogether.
There are several challenges that need to be overcome to ensure a successful delivery which range from vehicle access, weight of goods, unloading requirements and movement of goods once off the lorry.
Whether we are collecting or delivering a pallet there are lots of things you can do to help us provide the best possible service. Take a look at our helpful pointers:
PALLETISING THE GOODS>>>
Ensuring the goods are securely wrapped to the pallet is the most important part of pallet transportation. It may appear safer just being on a pallet in the first place but remember goods being sent through the network will be cross-shipped several times and have a lot of travelling to do! Take a look at the Pallet-Track video to see your pallet journey.
Ensure the pallet is in good condition and appropriate for the size and weight of the goods it will be carrying.
Stack the goods on the pallet in the most suitable way to restrict movement and where possible ensure they are within the pallet footprint. Goods that overhang are at an increased risk of being damaged.
MAKING IT SAFE>>>
Make sure the goods are secured to the pallet to stop them falling off or moving during transport. Ensure the shrink wrapping is sufficient to the size and weight of the goods. If the goods are particularly heavy, an awkward shape or of a fragile nature think about additional packaging and binding such as a pallet strapping kit.
Adding a document enclosed to the pallet which includes a dispatch note of where it is going along with the contents of the pallet is a good way of ensuring the end customer knows what they are getting. It also gives the depot an additional point of reference when applying the pallet labels ready for transport.
BOOKING PALLET DELIVERIES AND COLLECTIONS>>>
As with all parts of the logistics industry, information is key. The more you tell us the more chance of everything going to plan!
Make sure we always get the full address and correct postcode. Simply including a unit number along with the company name can make a big difference to helping the driver find where he needs to go. Especially if the delivery site is brand new and the company does not have their signs up yet!
CONTACT NAMES & NUMBERS>>>
If you want to send a pallet and then forget about it, safe in the knowledge we will get the delivery done then make sure you provide us with as many contact details as possible. Our depots and delivery drivers will liaise with the customer to advise ETA’s, access details and iron out any delivery queries. Don’t worry though, if there is anything that needs to be brought to your attention about the delivery we will be in touch.
SPECIFIC DELIVERY INFORMATION>>>
Specific details regarding the delivery can be added to the consignments manifest notes. If you know the delivery needs a small vehicle, the delivery point closes at 4pm, a tail lift vehicle is needed or the driver must report to reception on arrival, then let us know. It all helps to get the job done on time, first time!
A maximum pallet space on a vehicle is based on 100x120x200cm. If your goods overhang this limit, be honest with the dimensions you give us. Sneaky oversized pallets will get picked up within the network chain and you may get a nasty surprise when your invoice comes through and you have been charged for a double pallet!
Always try and be as accurate as possible with the weight you assign your pallet. It is a vital bit of information for the operators as they have to ensure the lorries are not overweight to be driving on the road! Additionally pallets over 800kg are not tail lift friendly so if they are over this limit the delivery point will need a forklift. As a general rule we suggest a maximum pallet weight of 1200kg. If your pallet will weigh more than this please give our operations team a call to check its ok to travel
WHEN THE PALLET DELIVERY ARRIVES>>>
Unlike your Argos deliveries where a friendly two-man team turn up to carry your new oven up 5 flights of stairs and install it for you, our guys carry out deliveries by themselves. This helps keep the delivery costs down but does come with certain restrictions which your customers will also need to be aware of if they order through you. Telling them upfront saves them being upset when the goods turn up.
All deliveries are curb side deliveries however the drivers will get as close to your front door as possible.
Unfortunately to ensure all deliveries are made on time (and the small matter of not being insured to do it) our drivers are not allowed to handball the goods off the pallet and take them into the property.
If you don’t have your own forklift then don’t worry. Our drivers can offload the pallet using a hand operated pump truck and the tail lift facility on the lorry.
Although the trusted pump truck is an essential part of loading and offloading pallets it does come with some restrictions. It really does not like rough or muddy terrain such as gravel drives or wet grass. If you have a lovely gravel driveway then unfortunately the closest the driver will be able to get with the pallet is the path outside your house.
To make sure we get round to delivering everyone’s pallets on time we need to be quite rigid with how long we can spend at each drop off point. If delivery is not possible straight away our drivers are able to wait for 20 minutes. Please make sure customers are aware their goods are turning up as every delivery needs to be signed for. If the driver has to move on this will generally mean the delivery cannot take place until the next working day and it will incur a redelivery charge.
Back to where we started – the humble pallet. This is part of the delivery package so make sure you let the delivery point know that the pallet is now theirs and our drivers can’t take them away!