A company’s returns process doesn’t necessarily have to result in reduced profits. We look at the importance of streamlining your supply chain through effective reverse logistics management to address product returns and recalls.

reverse logistics management

This year’s holiday season returns will account for 8.1 percent of total retail sales. These returns include customer returns and overstock or recalled product.

The idea of efficiently managing product returns doesn’t have to equate to a loss in profitability for your company.

Effective implementation of reverse logistics management can result in improved efficiencies throughout the returns process and can facilitate the recovery of valuable data as well as providing opportunities to eliminate excessive spending.

Having a contingency plan to manage returned goods is essential.

If you aren’t able to formulate such a plan yourself then you should consider outsourcing this task to a third-party logistics professional such as Skyfer Logistic.

A part of this plan may include using the same truck or carrier that delivers your new product to backhaul expired or damaged product to the manufacturing facility to reduce costs.

Electronic Tracking

Using electronic inventory management systems to send out automatic notifications when shipping volumes are met and to track expired, damaged or returned products can help key decision makers act expeditiously.

Optimizing Quality Control

Maintaining rigorous quality control and product inspection procedures to identify quality defects as soon as possible can reduce the impact of product returns on the supply chain.

Identifying Secondary Markets

The sale of recovered or recycled material from finished products on secondary markets can assist in recovering costs. The automated technology used by your third-party logistics manager can provide for a portion of returns being funneled from the customer back to a warranty center or a recycling facility instead of a distribution facility.

An effective reverse supply chain can provide additional benefits to your customers as well. Automating returns label generation and providing the ability to track returns can have the additional benefit of increasing customer satisfaction.

Working with a 3PL to streamline your returns management process will lead to overall improvements in your supply chain efficiency and ultimately in customer satisfaction as well.