Fortnum & Mason work with iForce to pack tea
I know many small online businesses who started out working from their spare bedroom or garage, but it’s sometimes easy to forget that even large businesses often face the same challenges, even those as big as Fortnum & Mason!
Unbelievably, up until recently Fortnum & Mason employees were measuring and packing 125g and 250g bags of tea on location at its London-based outlets in Piccadilly, St Pancras and Heathrow Terminal 5. You’ve only got to think about the logistics of this to realise that with some 40 varieties of tea being packed into two different size bags this wasn’t exactly ideal.
Now iForce, a fulfillment and returns specialist, has helped Fortnum & Mason to increase the efficiency of its tea packing process by managing a dedicated chamber within the retailer’s warehouse in Sutton. The specifically built chamber includes a ventilation system, which extracts dust particles so the quality of the tea is not jeopardised. In addition, an internal double door system was installed to avoid unnecessary air contamination.
Since August 2012, iForce has provided a range of multi-channel services to Fortnum & Mason, including direct to customer distribution, building and despatching the retailer’s iconic hampers, managing the stock replenishment of its stores, and overseeing international wholesaler distribution.
By relocating the tea packing operation to the Sutton warehouse, Fortnum & Mason is allowing its retail staff to solely concentrate on customer service and sales.
Having recently visited Amazon’s warehouse I’m still in awe of what a dedicated fulfilment centre partner can bring to a business. We’re now well into 2015 and whilst Christmas is almost forgotten it won’t be long until Christmas 2015 is upon us. Are you considering outsourcing any of your warehousing this year?