Best Practices in Fulfillment and Distribution
What advice would you offer others on the best practices of warehouse fulfillment and returns?
Herr: I have advice on what to do and what not to do. First, visit as many people in the supply chain that you are partners with, and if you are a small publisher, visit your distributor and tour his operation, and understand what he does on your behalf.
If you are a large publisher, participate in industry forums and glean information from inspections, collaborations and Book Industry Study Group (www.BISG.org) committees.
Also, find consultants who are intimately familiar with the book industry and have experience to bring best practices for warehouse distribution. Do not hire consultants without book industry experience; they often trick themselves into believing they know this area since they know other industries, but the book business has unique nuances that only those experienced in publishing can know.
Sharon R. Cole is Philadelphia-based freelance writer serving the print industry.