Real-Time Solution Provides Long-Term Innovation

Published: 06 February 2019
Lisa Marie DeSanto

Every relocation programme is unique, requiring close attention to all details to ensure our clients’ satisfaction and our mutual success. Some moves, however, stand out as particularly challenging. During these situations, our employees take great pride in providing innovative, caring and customised solutions to our clients and their employees. The following is one of many of these stories. 

Real-Time Solution Provides Long-Term Innovation

When one of the world’s Fortune 10 companies needed custom-designed furniture pieces and fixtures delivered to almost 500 of its global stores, SIRVA Commercial services were engaged to coordinate the project.  Through our global, direct-delivery network, 2980 movers and 908 lorries were deployed to 20 countries within a 30-hour window. Despite the short time frame the job went off without a hitch, with a 100% on-time performance rate and not a single report of damage. There was just one problem: shortly after delivery, the company’s project manager (PM) realised that the carefully delivered pieces didn’t fit into their intended spaces and needed to be rounded up and repurposed – and a new order would need to be placed for another delivery as soon as they were ready. What would they do with thousands of sizeable pieces and how would they handle moving another delivery at the same, significant expense? The client called SIRVA’s Vice President of Commercial Development, John Anderson, for help. 

First, John began by managing the retrieval of each of the 125,000 pieces that had been delivered around the world the very next day. His teams coordinated thousands of movers to repack and return the pieces.  Creativity was required because the original packing materials, custom-created to maximise both protection and space, had already been disposed of, so new methods were needed to protect each piece while ensuring that each one would fit back into the lorry it had arrived in. John also quickly secured five global distribution centres around the world, where his teams could begin the sizeable task of sorting through the unused inventory, assessing which pieces could be repackaged with a bar code to be sold, which items would be donated to local charities and which would be disposed of altogether.  Simultaneously, the company’s PM placed a new order for furniture and fixtures and SIRVA began receiving new products while sorting through the old.

Once the original items reached the distribution centres, SIRVA was able to minimise staffing and administrative overhead, shorten inventory time, and provide supply chain automation including: real-time order placement and tracking, automated customs clearance documentation, and the ability to monitor each order ‘through put’ – from the moment it left the warehouse until it reached its destination.  We were also able to save the client significant time and money while providing an orderly and reportable distribution of pieces to best remedy the client’s situation.     

Thanks to global coordination within a 30-hour window and a programme solution that was quickly developed, what could have been an expensive and time-consuming inventory remediation effort for the client became a successful inventory management solution. It also became a springboard for an expanded partnership in which SIRVA continues to work with the client on inventory management – from packing and loading to delivery, installation, storage and location recording. The company’s losses on the first delivery were minimised and an administrative savings of 82% was achieved on the second. SIRVA Commercial is now working with the client to leverage SIRVA’s global direct-delivery model to improve efficiency and cost savings on all of the company’s distribution and moving plans in the future. 


The Face Behind the Story:

John Anderson, Global Vice President, Sales & Marketing, SIRVA Commercial

john-andersonAs Global Vice President of Sales and Marketing, SIRVA Commercial, John leads a team that develops customised global offerings and commercial moving service delivery to many of the world’s largest and most respected companies. Having begun his career working for two prominent van lines in a variety of capacities, he’s well-versed in all aspects of moving, from logistics to implementation. The SIRVA Commercial team provides valued management and consulting capabilities; John has spent many years recruiting staff and instructing the members of this team on best moving and relocation practices. 

John is certified by the American Moving and Storage Association as a Certified Moving Consultant and by the Employee Relocation Council (Worldwide ERC) as a Certified Relocation Professional and Global Mobility Specialist. The knowledge acquired through these certifications, along with his extensive experience with the pricing and operational construction of custom global programmes, has allowed him to develop a team that provides significant value to our customers through innovative solutions and attentive execution.   

John currently lives in Texas, but he loves travelling the world with his “best friend” (and wife of 25 years), Melanie. When he’s not busy at work, he enjoys helping at-risk children by taking them on outdoor and hunting excursions; cooking for friends and family on his BBQ; and spending time with his second-best friend, Gilmour the beagle. Gilmour isn’t too bright and can be as stubborn as the day is long, but he’s a loyal companion and has been a “best buddy” since the day he became a part of the family.