Say Cheese!

Another video featuring a package delivery person behaving badly made the national news in April. This time the culprit worked not for an esteemed parcel delivery service but for the U.S. Postal Service. While the private services fired workers who chucked packages over fences and onto patios, the USPS disciplined – but did not fire – its employee for hurling multiple packages (including a Kindle tablet) onto the driveway of a home.The homeowners only discovered the mishandling when they reviewed the security tape to learn why packages were strewn about their driveway. Usually, mishandling is never recorded.

You don’t need a security camera to catch parcel abuse, however. Impact indicators or monitors added to fragile packages can prove exactly how a package was treated. Popular Mechanics used impact monitors in an experiment a few years ago to learn how an average package was handled. While not scientific, it reported considerably more jostling and sudden impacts than expected.

What may be most surprising is that labeling a package “Fragile” actually seemed to increase its mistreatment. When workers know a package is monitored, though, they tend to be more careful.

Nonetheless, accidents occur. Adding impact monitors to your parcels not only can prove an impact occurred, but can show the G force the parcel experienced. Some monitors also indicate where, when and from which direction impacts occurred. So, the next time a parcel carrier behaves badly (and you know there will be a next time), you can know and take action.

To learn more about how impact monitors can help improve your supply chain, contact ShockWatch.