Trying Out a New Schedule

One of the things we were most looking forward to when moving to our warehouse was having FedEx come daily to pick up all of our shipments. Previously Greg and George were driving any customer orders over to the local FedEx from Greg’s house where the products were stored. It’s worked out great – FedEx comes around 3:30 every day, which in theory means everyone can leave by 4 if they want to.

However – the flip side of the issue is receiving shipments, which has been quite a pain since moving. Mail doesn’t get delivered to our industrial park, so for all USPS packages and mail we have to use a different address…our P.O. Box. FedEx, UPS, and other shipments arrive at all sorts of hours, as I suppose you’d expect.

We had generally all been going in from ~9 AM – ~4 PM. The gas savings from carpooling has been nice (although I am not really a carpooling fan in general, which is a whole other post), but it doesn’t provide for the best coverage, specifically in the early morning.

After missing two shipments Friday morning, George called me and we discussed the issue a bit. At first, I thought “let’s call all the shipping companies and tell them we don’t open until 9 AM”. Then I realized that it was unrealistic to expect FedEx, UPS, DHL and every other private shipping company to coordinate around our schedule. Shipments are going to come at all hours of the day, starting at 7 AM and ending at 5 or 6, whether we like it or not. FedEx in particular likes to come right around 8 AM I’ve noticed.

I thought about it some more, and since I am still in early riser mode, I offered to start going in at 7 AM. Instead of going to the gym at 6:30 and then being ready to go into work by 8:30, starting Monday I’m going to work from 7 AM – ~2 PM and then hit the gym mid-afternoon. After that I’ll probably grab some food and work for a few more hours before calling it a night.

While this isn’t really my ideal schedule, I’m curious to see how it works. I’ve always been a morning gym guy. I’m hoping it breaks up my day a little more and gives me a little more freedom because I won’t be doing much carpooling. 7-2 is also a nice little 7 hour shift, so even if that’s all the work I do for the day I’m still getting quite a bit done. Of course, it could go the other way and I could hate stopping work mid-day and have trouble waking up without my workout…we’ll see.

Did I have to adjust my schedule? Of course not. But I think that as a four-person company we’re best staggering our shifts a bit so that we have as much coverage as possible. Right now it might not be a big deal if we miss a shipment or two a week, but we’ve vastly expanded inventory and plan on continuing to do so. Missing a few a week could become a few a day in six months. I’d rather just nip the problem in the bud right now. A minor schedule adjustment for me now could save us a bunch of headaches over the next year or two.

4 comments on Trying Out a New Schedule

  1. Dan says:

    Most shipping companies will document and keep your hours, it saves them from showing up and not having anyone there to accept.

  2. Adam McFarland says:

    Dan –

    Yes and no: for a lot of companies I’m sure that’s the case.

    We’re in a somewhat remote location where we are BY FAR the smallest company in the industrial park. I’ve spoken to our FedEx driver a few times and he says he’s usually delivering in the park from around 7 – 9 AM. It’s unrealistic/unfair to expect them to send another driver all the way out here every time we have one (relatively speaking) tiny shipment.

    Also – a lot of our shipments come from shipping contractors (not FedEx, UPS, DHL, etc). I’d have to ask George or Greg to be sure, but I’m guessing there are 5 – 10 other small shipping companies that deliver to us.

    Maybe we could get them all to agree to come between 10 AM and 4 PM, but I’d rather just make a minor change in my schedule and not have to deal with any of the headaches.

  3. Adam McFarland says:

    And as I was typing that FedEx showed up at 7:53…at least the first day of coming in early was validated…

  4. […] in March I wrote about how I was changing my schedule to accommodate our early morning deliveries to our warehouse.  Six months later, we’ve all […]

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