Regardless of what you are shipping, theft, fraud, and loss are always top concerns. However, when you’re shipping high-value items such as pharmaceuticals, high-tech goods or jewelry, those concerns grow exponentially. How you approach shipping and risk mitigation is critical to your company’s bottom line and your brand’s reputation. Because fraud, theft, and loss can occur at any time during the sales and shipping process, it’s important for retailers to use a layered approach when shipping their high-value goods. With the holiday shipping season fast approaching, here are 10 tips that will help shippers minimize risks while maximizing sales. By Dave Zamsky, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, UPS Capital.
- Perform a risk-assessment of your high-value shipments. Thoroughly examine all of your shipping protocols and procedures, working with an expert if needed.
- Ensure your packaging/labeling is nondescript with no indication of contents. Remove telltale terms (e.g. product name, company logo) from all labels and packaging. Double-box items to minimize pilferage, and make sure there are no loose items. Use fiber tape to seal packages. Double-box items to avoid break and loss
- Validate your customers. Check customers’ delivery addresses and payment methods before shipping.
- Coordinate delivery of high-value goods with recipients. Coordinated deliveries minimize time-in-transit, so synchronize delivery date(s) with recipient(s).
- Use carriers experienced in transporting high-value goods. Proactively re-route shipments around high-theft areas. Minimize handoffs and require documentation/signatures whenever they occur.
- Assess/develop security procedures at your shipping facilities. Keep your security protocols confidential, as limiting the amount of information shared minimizes the risk of fraudulent activity. Prepare shipments under a camera, and ensure the tracking number is captured. Film the opening of high-value returns, and keep the packaging if a loss does occur.
- Understand and follow best practices when shipping internationally. Moving high-value goods across borders while dealing with different currencies, laws, and languages is not only daunting, but makes it easier to fall victim to theft, loss, or fraud. Having and following a strong risk-mitigation plan makes it harder for those things to occur.
- Proactively monitor shipments in transit or work with a partner who can do it for you. Mask the tracking number when sharing shipment information. Confirm the package was delivered, not left at the door, and a signature was obtained.
- Understand and effectively layer insurance products to mitigate potential losses. Gaps may exist in your current coverage; confirm you have adequate protection for loss and damage.
- Actively train employees on security procedures. Train all staff on packing and coverage procedures.
(Source: Inbound Logistics)