Over 23,000 items pass through Inchcape's warehouse
Inchcape is the world's largest car seller independent from car manufacturers. Its Finnish branch represents three brands in Finland and the Baltic region: Mazda, Land Rover and Jaguar.
Inchcape is the world's largest car seller independent from car manufacturers. Its Finnish branch represents three brands in Finland and the Baltic region: Mazda, Land Rover and Jaguar. For some years now, their spare part logistics has been comprehensively outsourced to PostNord who handles spare part warehousing, order-collection and overnight transport to Finland and the Baltic region. In addition, PostNord is responsible for transporting Mazda's spare parts directly from Brussels to Vantaa.
For us it is important to be able to work with only one logistics partner
"For us it is important to be able to work with only one logistics partner, which means that we only need to talk with one party about the entire logistics chain. In addition to centralised transport, PostNord provides us with warehousing services. Their operations cover the entire Baltic region," says Inchcape's logistics manager Harri Räsänen.
"It's like having your own warehouse manager"
The spare part range is extensive: over 23,000 items including for example large metal parts, small electrical bits and pieces, delicate airbag cartridges and fragile windshields. PostNord uses Inchcape's data system, and there are daily telephone conversations between Inchcape and the warehouse. Räsänen is happy with the expertise and service-oriented attitude of Inchcape's knowledgeable warehouse manager and other personnel.
"If it is all about the livelihood of one of our customers, for example a taxi driver, they take pains to find the urgently needed parts amongst all newly arrived goods to make sure the customer's car can be back on the road as soon as possible."
Transport to car dealers and workshops is carried out using the fast InNight overnight transport. Outgoing products ordered by 14:45 are collected and prepared for shipment the very same day, and the shipments arrive in the small hours or in the far North, before noon. For overnight distribution, PostNord has alarm codes and keys at its disposal so that the goods can already be waiting inside the workshop when the first people arrive for work in the morning.
"Speed is an important factor in our sector in these days as the responsibilities of workshops have increased in recent years and they are often expected to provide a courtesy car. This means that the goods must be delivered as soon as possible."KExperienced return transports
Transport and warehousing operations also work effortlessly in the opposite direction. As environmental requirements grow, return logistics have become increasingly important: workshops must now return items such as chargers and compressors to the factory for recycling. The same routine is used to handle logistics related to warranty repairs.
Key figures relating to the long-established customer relationship are discussed in monthly meetings.
"Cooperation always involves continuous development. For example, we are trying to find ways to prevent errors at the order collection stage. For this reason we try to avoid using similar spare part numbers within any one order."
The warehouse also monitors the condition of received goods: broken items are photographed and the photos sent to Inchcape who can contact their principals.
No more transhipment in Beligan transports
A few years ago, Inchcape also transferred its Mazda spare part transportations from Belgium to Finland to PostNord. Trailers loaded at the factory take the Travemünde ferry across the Baltic and reach Vantaa within roughly 48 hours.
"The most obvious benefit is that this allows us to eliminate transhipment in Copenhagen. This, in turn, reduces the amount of breakage."
Räsänen summarises the essence of the partnership developed over several years:
"For us, this is the most rational economic solution and the service we receive from PostNord is both professional and reliable."