Customer-Centric Continuous Improvement

Customer-Centric Continuous Improvement

Improving your business shouldn’t be an intermittent event. It should happen continually and be guided by key performance indicators to measure the impact across your whole business. A customer-centric continuous improvement process should uncover new and different ways to increase productivity, streamline processes, satisfy your customers, and boost the bottom line.

 An effective continuous improvement process should be:

  • Collaborative – Defining key performance indicators (KPIs) based on YOUR business objectives that have broad impact across operating functions beyond transportation
  • Real Time – Data and information collected at the speed of YOUR business that guide impactful process and operating improvements
  • Evergreen – Ongoing and structured review process to critically analyze YOUR transportation operations against KPIs

 As a key supply chain partner, Cardinal takes a unique approach to continuous improvement – it’s about YOUR business, not ours.

Some dedicated fleet management companies use efficiency programs to improve their own operation and profitability. What they miss is the opportunity to refine and continually enhance yours. Cardinal’s customer-focused continuous improvement process is all about you and adding value to your bottom line.  Learn how Cardinal’s continuous improvement process helped one of our customers save $284,000 per year.

Continuous Improvement the Cardinal Way

Learn how continuous improvement can be used to create value and derive positive outcomes across your business in our latest infographic. You’ll find three mini case studies that showcase how Cardinal used continuous improvement to create value and produce positive business results for our customers.

Learn how we can help your business through continuous improvement the Cardinal way.

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Strengthening retailer Return on Assets (ROA) through new transportation models

Strengthening retailer Return on Assets (ROA) through new transportation models

The retail landscape is more competitive than ever, driven by consumer expectations for personalized experiences and the rise of digital technology. To meet these demands and to capitalize on the opportunities, retailers must design unique retail experiences and transform their supply chain to remove friction from their delivery network.


Disruption in Retail: The Amazon Effect

The continuous evolution and disruption of the retail market, both online and in physical outlets, emerging from increased e-commerce is known as the Amazon effect. Going from an online bookstore upstart to inventing a new retail experience, Amazon is a true retail disruptor and is constantly innovating around the consumer experience. With their recent acquisition of Whole Foods, they’re creating a hybrid retail experience that traditional retailers and supply chain models are challenged to meet.

Amazon’s delivery network is a logistics phenomenon that allows for the delivery of virtually any item to a shopper’s doorstep in a matter of days or even hours. With little evidence of consumer expectations easing, retailers are pressured to match Amazon’s speed and efficiency. This pressure has increased stress on retailer assets and processes from manufacturing to transportation.

Building agility and flexibility into transportation models is essential to creating the differentiated buying experience consumers demand. This needs to be done in parallel with new operating models that retailers need to grow, improve efficiencies, and increase Return on Assets (ROA).

Measuring Retail Transformation

ROA is a significant gauge of efficiency measuring how well a business uses its assets to make a profit. Efficient supply chain management will help gain a competitive advantage by streamlining how products move through your operation and get to your customers. Improving supply chain management efficiency will boost ROA through its effect on both profit and assets.

This transformation does not come without challenges to manufacturers, warehousing, and transportation carriers. In our latest infographic, see how retailers can strengthen ROA and deliver experiences customers demand through new transportation models.


How Cardinal Helps Retailers

Cardinal Logistics helps retailers reduce friction in their supply chain and protect their brands through custom-designed solutions, integrated transportation IT, and streamlined processes. Retailers achieve the benefits of highly trained dedicated drivers, built-in fleet capacity and consistent last mile delivery, installation, and assembly services without the capital investment and overhead of a private fleet. Learn how we can help your retail business.

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Contact Cardinal Logistics to explore how we can create innovative transportation and technology solutions that meet your needs today and keep pace with the evolving retail market. Call us today at 704-789-2000.

3 myths of private fleet outsourcing

3 myths of private fleet outsourcing

Getting your products to customers has never been more challenging. The driver shortage continues to escalate, regulations hinder productivity, and the investment required to keep your fleet maintained and up to date is daunting.

Some companies believe operating a private fleet gives them more control over their business and operating costs and a better customer experience. Other companies have found outsourcing to a dedicated fleet partner frees up precious capital and allows management to focus on building the core business rather than moving products and managing transportation complexities.

With a carefully selected dedicated fleet partner, your concerns can be alleviated and these common myths dispelled:


Outsourcing my private fleet means loyal drivers will lose their jobs

Institutional knowledge of your customers and routes is invaluable. A good dedicated fleet partner will work closely with you to transition qualified drivers to their payroll benefitting all parties and providing continuity for your customers.



A third party won’t give my customers the high-quality service they deserve.

Your chosen dedicated fleet carrier should view your customers as their customers and invest in service-oriented people and processes to ensure a positive experience with your brand with each customer interaction.



It is less expensive to run my own fleet than to outsource.

Managing the day-to-day operations of a private fleet has direct and hidden costs that impact your profitability, raise risk and liability, and expose your brand. Your dedicated fleet provider can provide scalability and experience to improve costs and efficiencies, leverage a continuous improvement process to meet your company’s changing needs and goals, and they should protect your brand as if it is their own.

An outsourced dedicated fleet program delivers the benefits of a private fleet but without the daily challenges of managing one. Your dedicated fleet partner recruits, trains, and manages drivers, guarantees capacity to meet fluctuating demand, leverages technology to provide full visibility across your transportation network, and shares in the risk and liability of the fleet so you can focus on growing your core business.

Are misconceptions of outsourcing your private fleet holding you back from even considering it as a viable business strategy? Let’s debunk those transportation myths.


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4 questions to test the viability of your transportation network

4 questions to test the viability of your transportation network

A good transportation network requires a strategic symphony of well-managed resources uniquely crafted to fit the specific needs of a business. However, work-around processes are often put in place to meet unanticipated customer demands. This can cause inefficiencies and result in an unproductive environment of misaligned resources and processes. The supply chain becomes complicated, and inefficiencies can afflict the business for years to come.

The execution of a good transportation network begins with four questions:

1) Is our transportation network simple, stable, and consistent?

Individually these three conditions are important but not as impactful as when they are working in concert. When unified, they form a powerful strategy that can transform an inefficient supply chain. Simplifying processes aids in productivity, reduces man hours, and decreases overall transportation-related cost. The emphasis becomes laser focused on income-producing activities that can be duplicated again and again to create a stable and consistent supply chain process.

2) Do we have the right technology to keep pace with our distribution network?

The world is constantly changing, and technology is at the forefront of the evolution. While integrating a new system might seem challenging, you may no longer have the luxury to wait another budget cycle. Customers demand shorter wait times, better quality products, and customer service experiences to match. Satisfying these demands requires visibility across your supply chain and real-time customizations that will keep your brand in a positive light and at the forefront of your customers’ minds.

3) Are our drivers properly trained and equipped to be a great representation of our brand?

Drivers are so much more than just people driving trucks. Drivers are the physical representation of your brand and should have skillsets that compliment what your company symbolizes. Unfortunately hiring and retaining drivers is challenging and costly. With high turnover rates as the norm, finding and retaining good drivers could quickly tie up your resources leaving other parts of your business unattended.

4) Should we manage our supply chain efforts in-house or outsource?

While the prospect of managing your transportation network may sound like a good idea, you could find yourself dealing with uncalculated risks, unaccounted man-hours, and unanticipated costs. The idea of outsourcing can be worrisome as you may feel a loss of control. It is important to thoroughly vet potential partners before allowing them into your business. Speak with their previous clients. Learn about their internal processes. Validate their driver recruiting, training, and retention programs. Make sure they do not approach your business with a cookie-cutter solution. Every transportation network is unique and requires a design built specifically for each business.

Asking these questions before implementing changes can make the difference in the viability of your distribution network, impacting your bottom line and the quality of service delivered to your customers.

Cardinal solves complex mill-to-farm and retailer challenges

Inefficient transportation network. Limited visibility and control. Unmet customer expectations.

These issues can burden a supply chain-dependent business, and left unchecked, can wreak havoc on your bottom line. One of the nation’s largest animal feed distribution companies faced a very similar situation.

Due to their complex transportation network they struggled with managing multiple local carriers across their network, costs varied greatly, management had limited visibility to monitor performance and make business decisions, and customer service suffered. 

Learn how Cardinal Logistics created a customized solution for this feed distribution company that improved customer service, maximized efficiency, provided predictable costs and minimized liability. Since these are common issues that impact a variety of industries, Cardinal’s disciplined and proven approach to tackling these challenges can help a wide variety of businesses.