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snoman

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Reply with quote  #1 
A question for the sales reps out there, which do your customers prefer ?
An on time delivery w/exceptions or a late delivery that's 100% complete
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NoBite

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Reply with quote  #2 
I’ve been a sales rep and a restaurant manager. Either choice, if repeated long enough, is going to encourage the customer to search for other solutions. A less than complete order is going to have me (or you) scrambling. Worst case scenario I can’t fill menu items. That happens and MY customers suffer, you will feel the pain! Same goes for late trucks. But, depending on how late the truck is, maybe less scrambling, if I built in enough safety stock. Speaking as a sales rep, if I had to pick my poison, a late truck that is 100% complete is better than shorts and outs.
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snoman

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks for the reply and confirmation of my own experiences w/customers. 
Current routing programs are perfect world and do not account for unplanned scenarios. I have always suggested customers order product to carry through the day as best as possible.
If we have these conversations to educate customers and train drivers to increase focus on quality there's an opportunity for service levels to improve.
When challenges arise I pace myself to allow a 1 hour window so that quality and quantity are delivered in a timely manner.

I'm curious which distributors place a high level of focus on perfect orders w/their drivers ?
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Retiredfoodpro

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Reply with quote  #4 
100% complete and late always. Never eat off the truck poor business practice.  Always have inventory for the days business and order accordingly so a late truck is a non issue. Plan ahead. 
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commoditiesguy

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Reply with quote  #5 
My customers prefer their order delivered within their time window, filled 100%.
There's no reason that they can't get that.

If my customers had to make that decision, they would choose option C, going with someone that CAN do both.

Look, most customers understand things happen.  But they put me on a short leash (as well they should), when shorts, late trucks, or both, become the norm.
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shuttle driver

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Reply with quote  #6 
the drivers  want  things to go right and run smooth too,  they want to get done and go home,  BUT  were all at the mercy of the warehouse
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ISellLettuce

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Reply with quote  #7 
Every distributor could be 100% perfect, 100% of the time, if they wanted to. The problem is that they couldn't afford to. Operating expenses would go through the roof. Therefore everyone will have to simply hang their hats on 99.XX% and manage their routes as best they can. 
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chrisevans

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Reply with quote  #8 
@commoditiesguy-I agree realistic (time windows) should be met most often, the problem(s) lie when customers expect the truck to arrive exactly at the time listed on the manifest when they look it up on the app. The unrealistic routing times were the reason this conversation originally began. My opinion is that a few reps may be uncomfortable having the difficult conversations w/their customers while at the same time they are interested in their business.

@ISellLettuce-the distributor I previously worked for set a min of 98% for perfect orders and perfect routes were delivered daily. The difference is that the metric was not only measured among multiple DC's but was a value the company held in high regard. Meaning this metric was a topic of discussion throughout all levels on a daily basis. Having these conversations cost nothing w/any additional expenses allocated to best practices and training.

Thanks for the feedback
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commoditiesguy

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Reply with quote  #9 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisevans
@commoditiesguy-I agree realistic (time windows) should be met most often, the problem(s) lie when customers expect the truck to arrive exactly at the time listed on the manifest when they look it up on the app. The unrealistic routing times were the reason this conversation originally began. My opinion is that a few reps may be uncomfortable having the difficult conversations w/their customers while at the same time they are interested in their business.

@ISellLettuce-the distributor I previously worked for set a min of 98% for perfect orders and perfect routes were delivered daily. The difference is that the metric was not only measured among multiple DC's but was a value the company held in high regard. Meaning this metric was a topic of discussion throughout all levels on a daily basis. Having these conversations cost nothing w/any additional expenses allocated to best practices and training.

Thanks for the feedback

Totally agree here.  When I refer to late trucks, I mean when my customer says "Come on by anytime between 6am and noon.", we agree to it, then continually get there at 3:00.
As for having that tough conversation, I have always found it's easier to set the expectation, try to find a mutual solution, and move forward that way.  My customers respect that a lot more than telling them things and constantly falling through, then being a pansy and blaming operations.  The truth can only be hidden for so long.

I don't live in la-la land, I know some customers are simply a pain in the arse.  But your A customers are probably worth the time and effort and are easily the easiest to work with.  Your B customers that show potential can always lead you into the "Well, I can have a little more control over when you get your order, if your order represents a larger part of that route." (hint hint!).  And your C customers aren't worth the fight these days.
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