Overcoming impossible odds to pick/pack 55,000 coats

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In the apparel industry, some items are small and easy to manage. Wallets and wristlets come to mind. Other items – such as bulky winter coats – require significant square footage. Plus, the sheer bulk makes it challenging to process the goods and pack shipments. Thankfully, at Darn It! Distribution, we have plenty of space in our Apparel Warehouse and highly trained employees who provide value-added services.

Recently, the Darn It! team was asked to do the impossible…

We were expecting a shipment of 55,000 coats from our customer (an apparel manufacturer), valued at $7 million. According to the plan, we would have 8 weeks to process this large quantity of full-length women’s coats. This allowed plenty of time for our pick/pack/warehouse services, in preparation for the manufacturer’s distribution schedule to nationwide retail outlets.

Yet, as Robert Burns penned, “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” Due to delayed shipments from the retailer’s overseas manufacturers, this project’s turn-time shrank from 8 weeks to 2½ weeks!

With $7 million of merchandise on the line, Darn It! needed to overcome the impossible to meet critical delivery dates.

With just 2½ weeks to manage 55,000 bulky items, the Darn It Distribution team flew into action. Briefly, here’s what we achieved in those few short weeks:

  1. Identified and resolved random quality issues – Our Apparel Inspection team revealed that some units needed to have hangtags removed as they were incorrect, while some needed to have price tickets added as they were missing. Other units listed an improper country of origin on the care label. It took time (and space) to sort the bulky items and remediate the issues.
  2. Organized the picks, then packed each shipment as required – Various quantities of the 55,000 units were to be shipped to dozens of retail outlets around the nation. Complicating matters, we needed to meet highly detailed specifications: some units were packed in corrugated cartons, some were packed on hanging rails.

Clear communication was key to tackling this “impossible” project.

At Darn It Distribution, we know on-time delivery is a must in the retail market. It’s critical to get your product on the shelf to meet seasonal promotions. That’s why we work hand-in-glove with our customers to clarify expectations and exact specifications for our value-added services.

Clear communication is also a hallmark of our highly experienced workforce at Darn It! Distribution. Thanks to clear communication and a “do-what-it-takes” commitment to our customers, we’re able to complete projects on time, with the highest quality possible, while meeting detailed specifications.

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