Asset Tracking Leads to Accountability


ou have obligations to your end customer.  Your brand promise is to deliver exceptional customer experiences ensuring that your customer’s product (a package, an exhibit, a motorcycle) is at the right place at the right time and was handled securely the entire time you were responsible for it.

Sometimes you have to use the power of a subcontractor to help you achieve this success.  Even with the best subcontract relationships, you are unfortunately not in a total control position and are reliant on the updates and information provided to you by your vendor.  To complicate matters even more, your vendor may actually be outsourcing one part of the scope as well, deepening the supply chain and distancing you further from real time information and performance guarantees.

So how do you make sure you have all the proper controls in place to eliminate as much risk as possible?

Trust, but verify.

Utilizing asset tracking devices, you can put yourself back into a power position.  You can see the status of your (customer’s) goods without relying on your vendor’s feedback or revisionist history.  An asset tracking solution will not only help you answer the simple question of “Where’s my stuff?”, but it will also help you identify potential schedule and delivery impacts, enabling proactive alternative responses rather than scrambling for a solution later.  It will also help you make sure your vendors are performing their scope as prescribed by you to make sure you are getting the service levels you are paying for.

Here’s an example of when things didn’t go right – and how the HEAT asset tracking solution helped one of our customers get an adjustment for services not rendered:

Exhibit Crate Delivery Mishap

An exhibit company was managing the transport an exhibit crate to a trade show in Las Vegas.  This situation required the exhibit company to utilize a third party logistics company to pick up the crate in Oregon and deliver it to the convention center on a given date and time.  The exhibit company requested and paid for secured storage for the crate and an early, 6 a.m. delivery to the convention center.  Unfortunately, the 3PL missed the mark for delivery, claiming heavy traffic and delays at the drayage zone.  The exhibit company was already aware of the “delay” by watching the tracking information from the asset tracker they had placed inside the crate.  From the tracking information, they saw that the crate had not been stored in a secure location overnight (rather, it was in a truck in the driveway of the driver’s house) and that the trucker actually hadn’t left his house until just before the delivery time, making several stops along the way.  Obviously, a price adjustment was in order.

Things go wrong all the time – even with the best of intentions and efforts.  The question is – Are you using every available solution possible to proactively manage your success and Cover Your Assets?