UPS’s Reverse-NASCAR Solution for Shipping Efficiency

May 27, 2014

What’s the fastest way between two points? A straight line. Well, what if you were trying to map the fastest path between a few dozen points? That’s a question UPS was asking back in 2001 when its team was trying to figure out how to save time on deliveries – because when it comes to shipping, time really does equal money.

The answer? Well, it’s basically the reverse-NASCAR solution. While racers will spend their Sunday afternoon making only left turns, UPS changed its shipping model to avoid left turns on delivery routes.

Sounds crazy, right? Not when you look at the data, which shows that idling (i.e. wasting gas and time) while trying to make left turns was chipping away at UPS’s bottom line. Instead, by designing routes so they were a series of looping right turns, UPS has estimated the company has saved 10 million gallons of gasoline and reduced carbon emissions by 100,000 metric tons, all because UPS learned from Derek Zoolander and now never turn left.

National courier companies like UPS are an important part of the Ernest Packaging Solutions customer base, and we have a lot more in common than just that. We’re all about innovative thinking, too, and no challenge is too difficult or solution too complex out there for us to tackle.

UPS shows that everyone needs to adapt to stay competitive. In the packaging industry your challenges may be related to weight reduction, sustainability, cold-chain or more (and no number of right-only turns will help you there).

Every packaging company basically has the same materials to work with; it’s what you do with them that counts, and that’s where Ernest Packaging Solutions engineers stand alone. That’s why you need an innovative group of experts … say a “lab” full of them. Doesn’t that sounds nice? Well …

If you’re a regular reader of The Ernest Buzz blog, you’ve heard a lot about our Innovation Lab and its inhabitants’ packaging-obsessed minds. But behind the corrugated snowboards and April Fools’ pranks are a team of experts who know how to fix your packaging and warehousing challenges.

To stand out in the packaging world, you need consultants who don’t just make boxes, but craft custom solutions you may not have even considered. From changing materials to lighter and reusable blends to cold-chain logistics that ensure your product arrives unspoiled, you need to innovate to keep your business growing.

Ready to move your packaging forward? Contact us today, and let’s get started on creating your next generation of packaging.