*Takes dramatic drag of cigarette* What does it mean to be in good company? In essence, it’s simply a group of people bonded together by common ideas and shared values. In a business sense, a company is only as good as the glue that holds it together, bonded through a shared mission, a vision to strive towards, and the belief that the joint effort of a company will result in prosperity well beyond the capacity of an individual.
So what happens when the frustrations start to mount, and your business is brought to the very brink of “do or die”. Well that’s what happened for E-Commerce Xpress, a third party logistics (3PL) provider located in South Queensland, Australia that specializes in guiding small to medium-sized businesses through the initial growth phase of logistics — ranging from women’s apparel and winter clothing, to home gym equipment (booty bands, resistance bands, water bottles, etc).
>”Shipping 200 orders felt like such a struggle. Our staff definitely shared the frustration. To put it in perspective there was one fairly high volume period where in an 8 hour shift, someone tracked 12.5km on their Fitbit for the day.” E-Commerce Xpress Cofounder and GM
12.5km … for those of us not on the metric system, that’s about one third of a marathon. After this particularly stressful event, the good people at E-Commerce Xpress decided it was time for a hero to sweep them off their aching feet — a ShipHero that is. We were enticed by their story and sat down with Anger, Jordi Anger, Cofounder and GM of E-Commerce Xpress. Here’s our interview.
ShipHero: Mr. Anger, could you please calmly provide a brief description of your business 🙂
“We are very simply a 3PL/fulfillment centre located in South Queensland, Australia. We specialise in fulfillment and inventory management for small to medium-sized e-commerce brands who are going through those initial growth phases in the logistics side of their business.
The local brands are starting a lot of eco-friendly, earth-conscious based products/brands, and we also see a lot of Swimwear and Cosmetic type business, probably due to the renowned sunny weather we have here!
Our goal is purely to ensure that their customers have the best possible journey behind the ‘Pay Now’ button and provide the best and most flexible service possible for our clients.”
Before switching to ShipHero, what were the challenges that made you want to just rip your hair out?
“We were using another 3PL company, which initially sounded like the best suit for us at the time. Unfortunately, the transparency was not there and by the time we had switched to live we found that we couldn’t use their product to its fullest potential.
“As a result we had to go pay for a completely separate platform just to be able to generate labels and ship orders. So we couldn’t pick Multi-batch, we had to become a paper reliant warehouse, we couldn’t fulfill orders through the one system and we had next to no support, which are all the things we were initially sold on.
The main frustration was that–”
“Anyway, the main frustration was that because of this, the time it took to ship 200 orders for example was ridiculous. From memory it would take about 4 of my staff about 4-5 hours to completely fulfill 200 orders. My staff definitely shared the frustration.
“To put it in perspective there was one fairly high volume period where in an 8 hour shift, someone tracked 12.5km on their Fitbit for the day. This was simply because the walk-time they had to do for each order was essentially the same each time due to not being able to use the multi-batch order feature.”
And… how did that make you feel?
Phew. How about after the switch to ShipHero?
“The week we went live with ShipHero we did the same amount [200 orders] in about 2 hours. As of right now, even less. After the switch, the amount of efficiency we were operating at was, and still is, truly amazing. That would be our biggest area of improvement, along with now becoming a paperless warehouse which is really important to us.
“The only way this is possible is by partnering with a platform that had similar values like ShipHero. We see ShipHero as an extension of our team as well, and so far they haven’t let us down.”
Ha … we’re honestly terrified to let you down. So when searching for a fulfillment partner, what did you consider as important criteria?
“Customer service is always a must! In this industry, it’s very common for small issues to arise every day so we needed to make sure we had a really good support team by our side, and more importantly, an on-boarding team that could teach us to problem-solve ourselves!
“We also wanted a modern and easy to navigate interface that would be simple for our employees to learn as well as our clients. There are a lot of outdated WMS that we came across that are really hard to grasp.
“Finally, cost is an obvious factor. There are a lot of services out there that have a lot of hidden fees that once you start operating, it’s clear that those services are necessary.”
What made you finally choose ShipHero?
“Liam Dillon (CoFounder) and I had been watching and sharing some of ShipHero’s YouTube videos and really liked how they were explaining and demonstrating the pick-and-pack processes. We decided to do a bit more research on ShipHero and found that they have a 3PL-specific WMS platform.
“We had already had multiple meetings with other platforms but none were the right fit. ShipHero stood out to us immediately as we could see that they weren’t ‘stuck in the past’, and really provided a fun and modern aspect to 3PL and fulfilment.
“Not to mention, the pricing structure was super easy to understand and really cost efficient, which was a huge plus!”
How was the integration process with ShipHero?
“Our last WMS had a 6 week on-boarding period to get set up and learn the system, with ShipHero we were integrated in about 2 hours! This experience was super straightforward and easy.
“We essentially went live the next day after connecting our customers, and we were shipping immediately. It was the best way to learn the system as we essentially jumped straight in and learned by doing. Everyday, our onboarding manager was checking-in to see how things were going and was available via email, phone and even SMS.”
Well don’t forget that they’re still around for whenever you need to manage your … systems. Finally, how was your business impacted by COVID-19?
“We strangely launched our business throughout the COVID-19 period. We were pretty lucky here in our state that we were able to control the cases and still be able to provide essential work for the most part!
“We were also super lucky to have two amazing clients that saw the benefit in utilizing our services throughout COVID-19 as their industry skyrocketed during this period. Liam already had a really good relationship with them previously so we were able to help them control their growth and provide an awesome service whilst they allowed us to grow with them and quickly build our operations into what it is today!”
Amazing. Final thoughts, comments, words of praise, or outbursts?
“In summary, we are super lucky to be able to partner with ShipHero, who is focused on continually making changes to benefit their users! I feel like every month there are new and updated features which might not seem like a big deal but benefit our warehouse processes dramatically.
“We have been able to scale back our costs, time and effort ever since partnering with ShipHero, which at the end of the day has allowed us to focus on growth and perfecting our business’ services and operations.”
Follow Liam and Jordi and hop on the E-Commerce Xpress at their website and Facebook.
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