If you’re delivering office furniture, there’s a good chance you’re handling products that amount to hundreds of dollars (each!).
From desks to storage units, to ergonomic chairs, and everything between – all these essential items need delivering in one piece.
So, to ensure satisfied, returning customers, the delivery must go smoothly. This is where a pre-delivery inspection works wonders.
These reviews help guarantee customer satisfaction and save you the hassle of dealing with product replacements and re deliveries. Failing to inspect your delivery vehicle (and wares) beforehand, can result in catastrophic losses and accidents.
In light of that, we’ve outlined why you can’t understate the importance of pre-delivery inspections for your office equipment.
Let’s take a closer look.
What’s a Pre-Delivery Inspection?
As the name suggests, a pre-delivery inspection is when a product manufacturer (in any field) inspects the final product before delivering it to the customer.
This also includes checking vehicles and warehouses to ensure they’re safe to use.
If you’re a company delivering office furniture, it’s wise to split our search into two categories:
- Your delivery vehicle
- Your wares
By splitting up your pre-delivery investigations, you give a better structure to your inspections.
Why Do Pre-Delivery Inspections Matter?
Checking your delivery fleet to ensure trucks are in good condition is crucial. Not only for the protection of your products, but also for the safety of your drivers, and your brand’s reputation.
Any accident on the road caused by a failure to recognize worn or faulty parts in the vehicle may result in a liability suit. That’s as well as hefty costs for replacing the damaged wares.
But, on the ‘product inspection’ side of things, sending out orders with faulty parts or damages will result in customer complaints. Not to mention, demands for refunds (and quite rightly so).
This is especially true of the furniture business. Where people make sizable investments in their furniture, delivering undamaged goods as promised is all the more vital.
Consumers are still hesitant when it comes to ordering furniture on the web. Yet, over 80% of consumers research furniture choices online before making a purchase.
Online stores face fierce competition.
Namely, because so many digital brands offer fast delivery times. As such, delays or problems with shipping, can result in customers fleeing to your competitors. And of course, pre-delivery inspections are a really simple way of avoiding that.
Failing to Perform Pre-Delivery Inspections: The Consequences
Here are a few of the adverse outcomes that could arise because you haven’t performed a pre-delivery inspection:
Damaged wares might be delivered to the customer. Not only does this annoy consumers, but it also costs your business money.
In fact, each truckload of long-distance furniture deliveries can cost you as much as $2,000! As such, returned items that need reshipping can be an extremely costly business.
- Costs of vehicle repairs that haven’t been identified and consequently, got out of hand
- Legal liability for accidents caused by faulty, uninspected vehicles
- Increased risk of accidents that could injure delivery drivers.
- The loss of your brand’s reputation as a result of an accident that could have been avoided with an inspection
- Failure to recognize problems with an entire range of wares before shipping them out
You get the idea.
How Do You Undertake a Pre-Delivery Inspection?
First things first, you should carry out regular inspections. To help keep on top of this task, hire a designated pre-delivery inspector. It will be their job to look at the delivery vehicle before it goes out on the road.
The inspector should prepare a checklist for everything that requires inspection. Then go through the checks in a systematic manner every time they conduct a review.
It almost goes without saying, the aim of these vehicle inspections is to check the truck is safe for the road.
The engine should be running smoothly, and brakes should be tested regularly. The inspector should also check for working lights, steering issues, and safe holstering.
As we’ve already said, you should also inspect your products before delivery. Product inspection checklists will vary from company to company, depending on what you’re selling. But for office furniture, it’s essential to check that:
- All drawers are closed and secured, so they remain shut during delivery and don’t slam
- There are no defects in the furniture
- All parts for assembly, manuals, and small parts like screws, are included
- Flat-packed furniture is appropriately packaged and cushioned. There should be little room for the parts to move inside the parcel
- Feet and other fragile pieces should be removed from the furniture and all delicate parts bubble wrapped
- Styrofoam is used where necessary
- All fragile items are marked for the driver
Finally, if your wares and vehicles are fit for delivery, business shipping best practices still need to be adopted, including:
- Avoid overloading trucks
- Stay up to date with safety and vehicle compliance regulations
- Keep records of all pre-delivery inspections
All of these tips will help you ensure everything arrives in one piece.
Know Before You Go – Appreciate the Importance of Pre-Delivery Inspections
Whether you’re manufacturing and shipping office furniture yourself or using a shipping company to transport your wares, pre-delivery inspections guarantee customer satisfaction in any industry.
Before shipping your wares, assign a regular inspector and work out an inspection checklist.
Only you know what metrics matter for your wares, so include a pre-delivery inspection that complements your business. This goes a long way in ensuring nothing gets damaged during the delivery.
If you’re looking for a reliable shipping service that offers expedited trucking, airfreight, and last-mile home delivery, amongst many other services, get in touch with Need It Now Delivers. We look forward to hearing from you soon!