Cross-docking is a shipping strategy that cuts the time goods are warehoused. It’s a logistics solution that offers benefits for shipping particular types of products. It also assists companies using inventory management strategies, such as just-in-time (JIT)

When goods get shipped using this tactic, goods arrive at the receiving dock. They then get moved to the cross-docking area for sorting and moving to the loading dock. It works best when shipping is coordinated between all members of the supply chain so that loads arrive complete and on time to the receiving dock.

The use of management systems for orders, warehouse/yard operations, and transportation all help in the coordination process. Products that are back-ordered, seasonal, high-value, promotional with short lead times, or have regular high-volume orders may all benefit well from the use of cross-docking.

Below are some of the benefits of cross-docking.

Reduced Delivery Time

Goods shipped via cross-docking get sent from various providers to the cross-docking terminal. Then, rather than getting sent to a warehouse, they get moved directly to the loading dock. Goods are normally dispatched directly to the customer within as little as one hour or up to 24 hours.  

Reduced Material Handling

Cross-docking services cut the need for inventory to get put away into storage. Products don’t get moved to the warehouse or returned to the loading dock after order picking. This flow-through results in fewer instances where labor personnel need to handle the goods. 

Reduced Damage to Inventory

Reduced material handling cuts out the possibility of damage during moving the load from the receiving dock, through a warehouse to its storage location, then back again to the loading dock. It also helps cut down on the damage that can occur during storage.   

Reduced Inventory Costs

The cross-docking shipping method speeds up the process of getting goods from the production line to the customer. The net results in a need for less storage space and labor that creates a decrease in inventory costs. 

Reduced Distribution Costs

Cross-docking service providers can coordinate loads by their respective endpoints. This can help increase the likelihood of the shipment of full loads. Full loads cut the distribution cost because the price for transporting each unit costs less.

Increased Customer Service

Cross-docking can get products to the customer quicker which helps increase customer service. Quicker delivery matters when items have been back-ordered and the customer has already been waiting too long. Seasonal and promotional items are also sensitive to needing prompt delivery.

When items reach the receiving dock and moved to the cross-docking preparation area, they can get inspected for damage. If there is a problem, the provider of the goods can get alerted to get the resolution process put in place before the good’s arrival to the customer. 

Let Us Handle Your Cross-Docking Needs

We provide superior cross-docking service for full loads and less-than-truckload (LTL). We can handle logistics that includes road, rail, air, and ocean.

Click here to get a quote for cross-docking or any of our other services.