Dominion's Voice

The Role of women in supply chain management

Published on July 07, 2017
Role of Women in Supply Chain Management 2 (1).jpg


According to the widely publicized 2016 Fortune 500 list, women hold a measly 4.2% of all CEO positions in America’s five hundred largest companies. Seriously, you read that right. Four point two per cent. Men are two to three times more likely to work in a senior management position than women are ( In 2015, women held 20.5% of Board seats and because of this startling statistic, Canada has made it one of its national goals to increase that figure to 30% by two-thousand-nineteen.

During our research for this article, we were absolutely astounded by these numbers. I mean, it’s always been remarkably clear that men hold the majority of power in the workplace, but being confronted by these jarring statistics really made us sit up and take notice. Noting just how immense the great divide is between men and women in the workforce served as the main driving force behind this post. Originally, this article wasn’t slated to appear on the blog until a little later on in the year, but since our findings were so impactful, why not publish sooner rather than later?



Prior to World War II, women had been expected to marry, have children and become happy homemakers while their husbands went off to work, becoming the family’s sole breadwinner. But during the War, when many men fought overseas, women entered the labour force in droves, doing their bit to “help out” until the men returned home. By 2016 – seven decades later – women made up 47.3% of the total labour force ( That’s nearly half! In addition, it’s important to note that the number of working mothers continues to grow; between 1976 and 2007, employment for mothers with children under six years old more than doubled from 31.5% to 68.1 percent! (

What does this prove? That women are just as capable – not to mention as ambitious – as men are to join the workforce and get the job done! Why then aren’t women being taken more seriously by their employers? Why is there such a great divide between men and women in the workforce? Women are given less responsibility, less opportunity, fewer promotions, and far less monetary compensation compared to their male coworkers.



There was a fantastic article published in July 2013 by online industry magazine Supply Chain Brain that touched upon how supply chain management has (over time) become a wise career path for women. Ann Drake, CEO of DSC Logistics, spoke about her new initiative AWESOME (Achieving Women’s Excellence in Supply Chain Operations, Management and Education) and the increase in female student numbers she’s noticed enrolling in supply chain courses at American colleges and universities. “The kind of talent that is needed in the industry today is that of orchestrator – people who are able to pull together different pieces and teams to work across organizations and silos. This is something that most women naturally do quite well.” (Making the Supply Chain a Better Career Path for Women, Supply Chain Brain).

The July/August 2016 issue of Supply Chain Management Review included a special profile of women in the supply chain industry. Although the article’s findings bring to light the vast differences between male and female workers’ official titles, responsibilities, and earnings, it’s important to note that change is in the air. A modicum of progress has been made and it’s especially evident in the following figure: the percentage of women who identified supply chain management as their primary job function (64.2%) was similar to male respondents (59.6%). This tells us that the number of women currently working in the industry is just about equal to the number of men.  Although, at this point, women do have less experience than men do in the supply chain field (mostly due to late starts), women appear to be joining the industry in greater percentages than men currently are.



As the years go by and the supply chain industry continues to expand and grow, women will gain more experience and thus gain increases in wages that will become comparable to what their male coworkers are earning. Women continue to make great strides in the workplace and their efforts have paid off enormously since the 1940s and the time of WWII. New industry studies and their findings appear to be hopeful and mostly encouraging compared to the general work force surveys quoted at the beginning of this post, and it’s lovely to see that the supply chain management industry has been so welcoming not only to female students, but to female workers and executives as well. Overall, according to our findings, it's fairly evident that the supply chain management and warehousing industries are leagues ahead of other major industries; supply chain and warehousing businesses seem to be welcoming women to their workforces with open arms and fostering relationships with them, encouraging them to succeed and grow exponentially to reach new heights!

Effective ways to prevent warehouse theft

Published on June 23, 2017
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Let’s face facts here: theft is (unfortunately) a very common occurrence in business. It happens frequently and usually without warning. The best anyone can do is to stay diligent and try to prevent theft as much as possible. Warehouses and 3PL businesses are particularly susceptible to theft because of the large quantity of goods and inventory that is stored on-site. Here are some helpful and effective tips we’ve come up with to help you prevent warehouse theft:


As a business owner, manager, and/or supervisor it is imperative that you create an overall pleasant and convivial working environment for your team. If your team is a happy one and each member of that team knows they are surrounded by supportive management, chances are there will be very little to no theft or criminal activity going on in your facility. A pleasant working environment breeds good will, efficiency, and staff loyalty. So, if your goal is to minimize theft, perhaps you should begin to look at improving the overall tone and atmosphere of your warehouse.


As well as improving the atmosphere of your work space, it is also important to schedule regular Town Hall meetings in which important information and safety measures can be discussed. Attendance from management, supervisors and team players should be considered mandatory at these meetings to ensure that everyone is brought up-to-date on the latest developments. Make safety and theft a particular highlight at your Town Halls and have employees ask questions if there are some concerns floating around. This is an optimal time for you to discuss what really matters in an open forum with your entire team of staff.


Your employees should know that they can approach management at any time if they have any concerns or suspicions. Their comments should always be kept anonymous and management should treat each case as highly confidential. Employees need to be assured that their grievances will be taken seriously and be treated professionally – if this is ensured, your team will likely remain vigilant and always report instances of wrongdoing as soon as they are realized. Again, it’s important to note that a pleasant, professional working environment will breed loyalty and honesty.


Protecting your inventory from outsiders is another problem entirely. You must make sure that your property is protected at all times. To do this, your best option is to install and maintain an effective security system that will safeguard your inventory. Additionally, if you think your facility warrants extra security measures, perhaps you should consider hiring a team of security personnel who are responsible for patrolling the perimeter of your property (inside and out). It is best to keep information regarding your security system(s) confidential and limited to upper management staff. That way, you won’t have things like passwords and key codes floating around from person to person.


Some “thefts” can be attributed to simple handling and/or data entry errors, therefore it is important to remain diligent and keep on top of these errors regularly. If this is something you’re having a particular problem with, perhaps you should consider running daily reports and checking your figures faithfully. We’re all human and therefore we all make errors. It would be a waste of both your time and resources to begin a full-blown incident investigation if the supposed “theft” was purely a result of an operator inputting the incorrect data into the system or of incorrect order picking.


Finally, fostering positive relationships between your management and team players is an invaluable way to prevent warehouse theft. In a way, this goes back to our first point: creating a pleasant working environment for your employees. Employees who get along with each other and their management will build stronger relationships over time and these stronger relationships will lead to efficiency, honesty, loyalty, and an overwhelming level of respect. There is no better way for you to instill values and morals into your team than to foster a positive, rewarding relationship with each and every one of your employees.

How To Keep Your Clients Happy

Published on May 26, 2017

customer service, business, suply chain, warehousing, 3PL, distribution, logistics


Your customers are what make your business thrive! A happy customer is a loyal customer and when customers leave your establishment satisfied, they’ll most likely return to purchase your products and services again and again. Here are some tips you can use to keep your client base happy and satisfied:


Offer Incentives or a Loyalty Program

Incentives are value-added services that get customers excited. For instance, if a customer spends a certain amount of money during one transaction, they could qualify for a discount. Or, you could introduce a points-based loyalty system that allows clients to collect points on each of their transactions. Once they collect a certain number of points, they can redeem them for discounts, prizes, or special in-store offers! The Shoppers Drug Mart Optimum points system is one of the largest in Canada and currently has hundreds of thousands of members. If customers believe that there is a lot of value attached to a loyalty program, they will enthusiastically enroll.


Treat Customers with Respect

Each person that walks through your door deserves to be treated with the utmost respect whether they’re a first time customer or a long-time devoted one. Treating others how you’d like to be treated is something that’s been ingrained in us since birth and it’s certainly a motto each one of us should live by. Be friendly and welcoming to new clients, engage your existing customer base in lively conversation, guide your customers around your shop or place of business, and always keep their safety and well-being at the forefront of your mind. You’ll soon find that going the extra mile for your customers pays off big-time in dividends!


Make Yourself Available

There’s nothing worse than dialing a vendor and not being able to talk to anyone, especially when your situation is of an urgent nature. Being there for your customers should remain one of your top priorities; this all goes back to treating your client base with the respect it deserves. Make sure your phones are being answered, your incoming mail is being addressed, and that all email inquiries receive responses in a timely fashion. I’m sure you’ve been there before: you’ve spent ages waiting for someone to get back to you only to receive a callback days later when you’ve already taken care of the problem yourself. Don’t put your customers or potential clients in that position. Make your available and communicate effectively with your customers!


Go Above and Beyond When It Comes to Service

 Ideally, customer service should be maintained at a superior level at all times. Now, we realize it’s not a perfect world and that things are bound to go wrong every now and again, but if you endeavour to maintain a high level of service, chances are the majority of your clientele will leave your business content and satisfied with their purchasing experience. If they do, the probability of them returning to your business is pretty much guaranteed!


We hope this blog post has helped you understand how important it is to keep your customers happy. It’s imperative that your clients are well-served, respected, and valued in this day and age where competition flourishes in the blink of an eye. If you don’t make your customers happy, rest assured that there are other businesses out there that will. Do you have any tips of your own that you’d like to share with us? Let us know by clicking the red button below!


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The Hallmarks of Good Customer Service

Published on May 12, 2017

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Every successful business owner knows that without exceptional customer service, their business simply wouldn’t survive. Impeccable customer service is the benchmark in every industry because without your customers, you are nothing.


Treating your clientele with respect and honour should come naturally, but sometimes – let’s be honest - it’s incredibly difficult to reign in your feelings and treat your customers with deference. In heated and argumentative situations it’s not always easy to censor yourself, but it’s important to realize that the key to establishing great customer service is building good, solid relationships with your clients and patrons.



It’s a truth universally acknowledged that a happy customer will return to your business and likely spend more money on your products and services! In this respect, it’s important to keep them satisfied to ensure that they value your business and return time and time again. You should make it your top priority to create a positive, helpful and friendly environment within your business that both your employees and clientele will benefit from.



Patience is a virtue, and going back to our previous point of reigning in your feelings and keeping your cool in tense, heated situations, it’s important to consider how well patience pays off. Try to understand that not every service situation you find yourself in is going to be crystal clear and straightforward. Sometimes difficulties will arise and it’s in your best interest to be as patient and respectful as possible, keeping in mind the feelings of your patron(s). Compromising is key here and you’ll find that if you’re willing to compromise with your customers, they are more likely to want to compromise with you and thus reach a satisfactory close.



Clear and concise communication is something that many business owners struggle with but it’s important to remember that rarely will a situation spin out of control if communication is kept clear and uncomplicated. Listen to what your customers’ needs are – really listen to them – and you’ll be able to forecast their needs, gaining the ability to read them well and understand what it is they’re truly looking for in terms of products and services.



It’s imperative to know the ins and outs of what you’re selling. All business owners should make a concerted effort to really get to know and understand their industries, thus improving their knowledge of products, services and industry practises. This knowledge will lead to well-informed sales staff and customers and an overall productive, efficient and satisfying work and sales environment! We should all try our best to remember that it’s invaluable for us to maintain a willingness to learn. Educating ourselves and keeping current on the latest trends, products and services in our industries is the way forward!


 Get in touch with Dominion!



How To Effectively Monitor Warehouse Inventory

Published on May 12, 2017

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One of the main reasons 3PL’s stay in business is their ability to effectively monitor their customers’ inventory. We are the protectors of their product, and it is our duty to keep it safe and ensure that it gets unloaded and put away in the correct place properly, and once it is ready to be shipped out, that the order is picked correctly and transported onto the truck in a seamless fashion. There are a lot of different specifications that you may run into when dealing with different companies and their products; some can be stacked 3 high on a pallet, some may not require a pallet at all, some may need to be in a temperature controlled environment and others cannot be placed next to another type of product for safety’s sake -these are all things to take into consideration. Some of your customers may utilize the FIFO – ‘First In, First Out’ system, or perhaps you have a customer whose product has an expiration date – they may utilize the LIFO – ‘Last In, First Out’ system. Each specific product line is going to have its own SKU (stock keeping unit ) number, and it is imperative that they are kept organized not just on the warehouse floor and in the racking, but also in transit (including cross docking, receiving, and shipping out), as well as in your WMS (warehouse management software).

Here is a list of our top tips on how to effectively monitor warehouse inventory:

  1. Regular cycle counts (defined as “an inventory auditing procedure…where a small subset of inventory, in a specific location, is counted on a specific day.”)
  2. Checking picked orders for accuracy: ensures less shipping errors and makes it easier to maintain inventory
  3. Ensuring inbound receipts are processed in a timely manner: helps keep inventory as "real-time" as possible
  4. Ensuring outbound orders are confirmed in a timely manner: helps keep inventory as "real-time" as possible
  5. Label everything properly: aisles, products, inventory, racking, entrances and exits – you name it, it should all have a label. Most inventories in the warehouse will have their own unique labelling method and best practices that will need to be followed (whether that is an industry requirement, catered specifically to Hazardous Materials, how the client prefers it, etc.) This will also help maintain a level of safety in your warehouse, assist in finding inventory faster and easier, which in turn helps employees work much more efficiently.
  6. Prioritize your day: liaise with the customer service representatives and transportation department, as well as team leaders on certain customer accounts – is there an order that is more time sensitive that needs to be picked first? Do you need to pull extra people from another part of the warehouse and get their help in order to accomplish something?
  7. Check the condition of the inventory:–are there any noticeable damages? This will help ensure that the inventory being shipped in and out of your warehouse is in perfect condition and helps keeps your 3PL accountable. It also helps eliminate the possibility of an unhappy customer on the receiving end.

Do you have any advice on how to best monitor your warehouse inventory?

Click on the RED button below and tell us what you think! We’d love to hear from you.

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Top 4 Industry Social Media Accounts

Published on April 28, 2017

Social media is everywhere and the majority of companies, no matter the industry, have a presence. It is a wonderful way to network, to stumble across an industry professional, a thought leader or other associated companies and connect with them in a new way. Dominion’s Voice wanted to share some of our favourite industry social media accounts:

  1. The International Warehouse Logistics Association (IWLA)

At the forefront of the North American 3PL industry is the IWLA, an amazing organization where many companies associated with warehousing, transportation, logistics, freight, and supply chain come together. It almost acts as a clubhouse – with the numerous conferences, trade shows, conventions, and learning opportunities that take place throughout the year, members always have something new to look forward to, and meet with friends and industry associates at networking events. There is always an element of fun woven into all of their annual events, which can definitely be seen throughout their social media presence:

2016 IWLA Convention & Expo Commercial

2016 IWLA Convention & Expo Highlights

There is a wonderful LinkedIn group for IWLA Members that is a platform for members and other such industry professionals to post relevant articles/blog postings, job postings and presentations from IWLA conferences and events.

We love the interactive aspect of their social media pages – when attending an event they always promote a specific hashtag and it’s a great way to market your company and get involved. They have been around for over 125 years, and they truly are just getting started!

  1. Maersk

“Maersk is an integrated transport & logistics company with multiple brands and is a global leader in container shipping and ports.” -

The Maersk shipping container is iconic – there is no doubt that you have seen their logo on a tractor trailer on the road, on a passing cargo train, or at a shipping yard. Their social media presence is very large and impressive, and it’s impossible not to take notice, as they are multi-channel:

  1. Purolator, FedEx, and UPS – Instagram

Purolator, Fedex and UPS are universally known, everyone recognizes their logos – they are hard to miss splattered on the side of multiple modes of transportation. We love these three Instagram accounts. Their beautiful visuals highlight how diverse and expansive their companies are and how far around the world their supply chain reaches – all while staying on brand! Each photo is a wonderful feast for the eyes, featuring bright colours and  the exotic locations that they deliver to, or showcasing their amazing team members getting the job done. All three accounts are very different, and we couldn’t choose a favourite, so it’s a triple tie.

  1. Armstrong Moving’s blog

Armstrong Moving is a Canadian moving company that specializes in “executive relocation services, international moves, moving across Canada and the USA, and warehousing services.” Their blog is a chalk full of interesting articles such as:

And a blog topic category for anything and everything involved with moving:

  • Art Prints
  • Car Relocation
  • Cross-Border move
  • Different Apps
  • Education Activities for Kids In A New City
  • First Impression
  • Going Green
  • Helpful Websites
  • Home Feeling
  • Inspirational Leader
  • Item Loss
  • Language Barriers When Relocating
  • Long Distance Communication
  • Moving Pets
  • Moving Tips
  • Neighbourhood Relations
  • Perfect School
  • Relocation
  • Shipping Goods
  • Tourist Trap
  • Transportation

With these suggestions, we have no doubt that these social media accounts will definitely gain some new followers! Show us some #socialmedialove by sharing this blog post and by checking out our Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages.

 Get in touch with Dominion!



Our Four Fave Industry Magazines

Published on April 14, 2017

Whether you love to read or not, magazines are a wonderful invention – half pictures, half articles, they are always printed on fantastically glossy paper and are fun to flip through. “Dominion’s Voice” wanted to share our favourite four industry magazines.

1. MM&D - Materials Management & Distribution

industry publications, 3PL magazines, warehousing, 3PL, distribution, transportation, supply chain, logistics

We really like this magazine, as it focuses on Canadian supply chain issues that affect us on national and local levels. So often the Canadian supply chain is glossed over or lumped in with North America as a whole, so it is nice to have the spotlight on Canadian topics and our industry.  MM&D does a wonderful job of focusing on conferences that are happening across the country and tying in keynote speakers and companies that are in attendance.  Their articles touch on such topics as how Canadians are conducting most of their shopping online during the holiday season and how this impacts the supply chain, Canada’s Free Trade Agreement with the European Union, e-commerce trends, chemical cooling for supply chain, and case studies such as the Lowe’s distribution centre move (Jan/Feb 2016, Pages 14-16), just to name a few.  There is also an Annual 3PL Capability Guide (Jan/Feb 2014, Page 18) which is quite handy if you are looking to outsource.

We love the paper edition that can be mailed to you for “old school” readers that prefer print, as well as the digital copy that is emailed, should you prefer to peruse it on a mobile device. MM&D releases 6 issues a year, so there’s plenty of amazing articles to pique your interest.

2. Supply Chain Management Review

industry publications, 3PL magazines, warehousing, 3PL, distribution, transportation, supply chain, logistics

 Happy birthday Supply Chain Management Review – they just celebrated their 20th Anniversary! This magazine is a bit of a thicker read, but there are so many great articles:

  • “Women in Supply Chain”
  • “Millennial Managers”
  • Case studies such as “How They Did It: Walgreens’ Talent Strategy”
  • “How to maintain a healthy supply chain”
  • “The 2016 Supply Chain Top 25: Lessons From Leaders”
  • “Getting Value From The Cloud”
  • Special Reports such as the “Top 50 3PL’s”

 This magazine does a wonderful job of naming specific companies in their articles and relating it back to the topics at hand; an example of a known company is always helpful and makes the article that much more relative and relatable. They also focus their articles on a national and global level. This magazine is available 6 times a year, in a print edition as well as online.

3. 3PL Americas

industry publications, 3PL magazines, warehousing, 3PL, distribution, transportation, supply chain, logistics

This is the International Warehouse Logistics Association (IWLA)’s quarterly magazine – each new edition comes out once a season. Reading this magazine always feels like you are catching up with an old friend over coffee – as most 3PL’s and warehousing companies are members of the IWLA, we are familiar with Steve DeHaan, President and CEO of the IWLA. The President’s Message featured in each magazine feels warm, friendly, and personable. We enjoy that they always feature articles that are in reference to panel discussions or keynote speakers at their annual conventions or conferences. They also allow members to contribute to the magazine - the “Why Be A Member In the IWLA?” is a wonderful chance for members to showcase their love and appreciation for the organization and hopefully recruit some new members as well!  Their articles are written by true industry professionals, and oftentimes they are individuals whom have spoken at annual conferences or events, such as:

The magazine features practical issues that every 3PL faces, such as:

This magazine is available online in a digital edition, as well as a print edition.

 4. Chemical Distributor 

industry publications, 3PL magazines, warehousing, 3PL, distribution, transportation, supply chain, logistics

All you chemical distributors/companies out there, this one’s for you! This is the  ’s quarterly magazine, available to NACD members and affiliates, who either receive a print edition in the mail or are able to login online to view the digital edition.

We love a magazine that is focused on and catered to one particular part of our industry. The NACD provides its readers with a realistic look at the nation’s political climate with “The View From Washington” feature:


Another helpful feature of this magazine is the “Member News” portion right at the beginning of the magazine – it showcases small snippets of the happenings of the member/affiliate companies, such as:

  •  Growth for a sales team
  • Distribution deals that have been awarded
  • What companies are conducting business with other companies
  • Industry awards that have been received

Think of it as a message board or bulletin board with tons of amazing tidbits for your brain to ponder!


 Do YOU have a favourite industry magazine that you would like to share with us? We would love to hear from you!  Please contact us by clicking on the red button below.


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Why Circle Checks Are Important

Published on March 31, 2017

logsitics, 3PL, truck drivers, safety, trucks, transportation, supply chain, circle checks


Circle checks are exercises that all professional drivers perform on their vehicles at the beginning of every shift or trip. Circle checks are literally just that; drivers take a walk around their vehicles and ensure that their semi-truck, trailer, and load are correct and are in perfect working order. Should a driver spot any issues, it is his or her responsibility to resolve those issues prior to leaving the parking space or home base.


Depending on the make or size of the vehicle, certain aspects of the circle check may vary. Also, a driver’s license class distinction has a lot to do with how intensive a circle check is. For instance, if you’re an A-Z class driver, the circle check is more labour intensive and requires more diligence and steps before the check is completed in its entirety. If you’re at all unsure how your license class affects your circle check, there are numerous resources and guides you can refer to on the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) website.


A circle check is essential in making sure the driver, the vehicle, and the vehicle’s load is kept safe while travelling from Point A to Point B. If a driver discovers any issues during his/her circle check, it is in everyone’s best interest if these issues are resolved before moving the vehicle. Sometimes, these issues can be easy-to-fix and will take very little time at all to put right. However, at other times, serious issues like engine trouble, deflated tires, and load discrepancies may lead to larger problems – and even road accidents – if they are not addressed immediately upon discovery!


Perhaps the best resource for circle checks is the Ontario MTO website, and if you live in a different Canadian province or in another country, consult the Ministry or Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) websites or offices that apply to you and your location. The MTO website offers users a complete digital Trucks Handbook in which you will find a section devoted solely to the V. Daily Inspection. License classes are clearly marked and identified in each section, allowing for seamless usage and research by professional drivers who wish to confirm what aspects of the circle check apply directly to them and which steps do not.


Circle checks are a useful tool for drivers to utilize to prevent their vehicle’s malfunction on the road, to prevent unsafe and incorrect loads to be transferred from one location to another, and to ensure their own safety in the tractor’s cab while travelling. Circle checks ultimately make drivers more aware of their vehicles’ capabilities as well as their vehicles’ shortcomings. It’s important to consider both, especially when transporting precious and costly cargo.


If you’d like to weigh in with your thoughts about the importance of conducting daily circle checks, please contact us by clicking on the red button below.


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One Year Later: Our First Blogging Anniversary

Published on March 17, 2017

blogging, anniversary, 3PL, warehousing, logistics, distribution, transportation

Happy birthday to Dominion’s Voice! We have had the best time working on this blog over the past year and we cannot believe that we have already reached our first anniversary! We hope that we have provided you with some laughs, informative articles and many good reads. We are always open to your suggestions and would love to hear your ideas for a future article. 

blogging, anniversary, 3PL, warehousing, logistics, distribution, transportation

Dominion’s Voice is constantly working on something new and brainstorming about upcoming blog topics. Stay tuned for these exciting posts coming up later this year:

  • The Hallmarks of Good Customer Service
  • Top 5 Industry Magazines
  • Effective Ways to Prevent Warehouse Theft
  • The Role of Women In Supply Chain Management

Some of our favourite blog posts from the past year have included:

As an NFI company, Dominion highly recommends the NFI blog. There are many interesting and informative blog series to choose from:

 Happy reading!


Spotlight on Freight

Published on March 03, 2017

North American business owners and suppliers have been shipping their goods by truck since the 1930s. Prior to that, when automobiles and paved roads weren’t prevalent, business owners shipped their cargoes by boat, train, or horse-drawn carriages and wagons. Since then, we’ve come a long way! Though shipping by boat and train is still in practise today, most of our continent’s cargo and inventory goods are hauled from Point A to Point B by transport truck.


freight, transportation, 3PL, logistics, supply chain, warehousing


Logistics – the commercial activity of transporting goods to customers – is an integral part of the warehousing industry. How else would we distribute our customers’ goods and inventory to their retail and industrial locations? Here at NFI Dominion, we utilize a fleet of tractor-trailers and subcontractors in order to accommodate our customers’ intricate and time-sensitive logistical needs. There are many factors that are at stake when travelling by road, some of which include  unpredictable weather, traffic accidents or congestion, road construction and road safety. All of these impact how long a delivery or certain route will take and how efficient the driver is.


There are primarily two different types of freight shipments that are conducted during day to day business; full truckload, or FTL and less than truckload, or LTL.


Full truckload (FTL) occurs when a carrier contracts an entire trailer load to a single customer and their inventory.

Less than truckload (LTL) mixes freight from several different customers in a trailer.


There are benefits to both; LTL is a more affordable option when the demand for product is average. There is no need to ship an entire trailer of product if the demand is not there, it would only create excess inventory and overflow. LTL is a longer delivery process than full truckload, but it allows multiple customers to share the cost of transportation with other companies – by taking up only a portion of the truck for their goods, they only have to pay for the length of travel and amount of product shipped. The majority of LTL shipments make multiple stops en route, picking up and dropping off inventory to various destinations. Best practice indicates that the trailer is packed according to the delivery schedule, with the inventory for the first stop being readily available when you open the trailer doors. This ensures that everything is organized and delivery can be kept as quick and efficient as possible, allowing the driver to move on to the next stop.


Full truckload is a direct shipment of goods from Point A to Point B. It is a quicker way to ship your goods and is ideal for companies with larger inventory (multiple pallets or heavier products) or a higher demand for the product. This is also the preferred method of delivery for higher-risk inventory, such as hazardous materials or speciality chemicals, which cannot be mixed with many other types of inventory. FTL shipments leave the warehouse on one truck and are not unloaded until they reach their final destination, which eliminates the room for error; whereas LTL has multiple stops and could potentially unload the wrong product at the wrong stop. FTL also allows for backhauling – which is taking cargo from the drop off destination back to the point of origin for the second part of the journey. If the truck is headed back that way and it is empty, a company may as well take advantage of the free space and ship it back, rather than just have the truck return empty. This makes sense financially, as it helps with the operating costs for the return trip for the carrier and the driver.


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