Posted on: May 8, 2019
If you have ordered product from Harbor, then chances are you’ve
interacted with someone from our transportation department. Our
transportation team is vital to ensuring product makes it out the doors
from our warehouse to the shelves of our customers’ stores.
About The Team Between LDC & RDC distribution centers, the transportation team is 95 members strong. There are several roles that contribute to the success of the team. Delivery Drivers are the team members taking the product into
stores. They take care of customers and safely negotiate the daily
hazards of driving a semi-truck in and around gas stations or strip mall
parking lots. The team also has Shuttle Drivers who travel the freeways getting the loaded trailers to the Delivery Drivers who live in other areas of the states we serve. Shuttle Drivers will also bring the empty trailers back to the distribution centers. Driver Assistants are often team members who have started in the Warehouse and want to start a driving career at Harbor. Driver Assistants help on the longer, heavier routes assisting Delivery Drivers unload. The transportation team also has a group of Administrative Professionals who are behind the scenes every day making sure stops are
routed correctly, laying out how the trailer will be loaded, and
communicating between departments and the transportation team. All of
these individuals come together to ensure our customers are receiving on
time and accurate orders.
Delivery Drivers start at seven different satellite hubs in addition
to our two distribution centers: Mount Vernon, Everett, Pasco, Yakima,
Vancouver, Medford, Bend and Redding.
How A Route Works Harbor’s routes start at all
hours of morning and night. On an average day, a Delivery Driver working
nights start around 10pm, whereas a day route Driver starts around 3AM.
Before starting the route, the Driver will ensure his driving logs are
up to date and accurate, ensuring no customers are missed on the route.
He checks his paperwork to see if there are any special instructions,
what stops he has that day, and how the load looks. Before heading out
on a route, a pre-trip inspection of the entire truck is conducted. This
is one of the most important action items a Driver will do before
setting out on the route. This inspection ensures the truck and trailer
are in working condition. At Harbor, we take our responsibility as
professional drivers very seriously.
The first stop for a Driver can be anywhere from ten minutes to three
hours away. All routes are consistent, so our customers see the same
friendly faces each week to develop relationships with their Delivery
Driver. A Driver typically has anywhere from 12-15 stops on his route,
and the entire load on the truck for these deliveries can weight up to
20,000 pounds! For most routes, everything is unloaded by one Driver,
pushed into each store or restaurant one load at a time.
Our team has grown a lot over the years, and like everyone, they rely
on technology more than ever for safety and order accuracy. Our team
has gone from filling out paper driver logs and manually counting every
piece delivered, to electronic logs on an in-cab computer and scanning
orders for proof of delivery. As we continue to develop our use of these
technologies, consolidating systems and simplifying data will lead to
even more efficiencies and serving our customers even better in the