Specializing in outfitting private planes and yachts, private residences and destination clubs, and hotels and restaurants, Dallas, TX-based Dahlgren Duck ships luxury products to elite clients around the globe. Dahlgren implemented the logistics warehouse software, Descartes OzLink™ Mobile Warehouse, to increase order fulfillment efficiency, improve picking and packing accuracy, all in order to deliver on its promise of providing exceptional products and service to clients around the globe.
Challenge: Error-prone Picking Hinders Efficiency
Dahlgren Duck supplies luxury furnishings to a discerning clientele—from china, flatware and crystal for yachts, planes, and palaces to specially-selected linens, pillows, and toiletries for the world’s top five-star hotels—from its distribution center (DC) in Dallas. Given its high-value inventory and the expectations of discriminating clients, there is no room for error on the warehouse floor. Dissatisfied with its legacy resource-intensive, error-prone Warehouse Management System (WMS), Dahlgren sought a scalable cloud-based solution that would ensure a streamlined order fulfillment process with efficient, accurate picking and packing. Solution: Automated Workflows Drive Productivity
With operational efficiency a top priority, Dahlgren Duck implemented Descartes OzLink Mobile Warehouse in January 2020 to streamline its shipping workflow. Pickers use mobile barcode scanners to ensure the correct item and quantity are selected, enabling the warehouse team to pick more orders with less effort while improving accuracy and visibility. Additionally, with real-time visibility into what is in stock, Dahlgren is able to lower safety stock while ensuring they don’t oversell items that are out of stock, which would result in a very dissatisfied customer.
“We need efficiency. We need to pick quickly, pack quickly. And we have no time to deal with errors. Before Descartes, daily support calls from the warehouse team were a huge drain on my time and our productivity,” said Lana Appleby, Technical Product Manager at Dahlgren Duck. Appleby manages the company’s full IT environment and all software implementations. “Now, the pick/pack/ship workflow runs smoothly and efficiently, even during regular month-end ‘micro-peaks’ and peak holiday season.”
Appleby added, “With the Descartes solution driving order fulfillment across six shipping stations in our 25,000 sq. ft. DC, we can offer our clients logistical advantages our competitors can’t. We’re able to hold products with long lead times to ensure quick and accurate delivery. And we have the ability to source, consolidate, palletize, and ship entire OS&E and FF&E packages for our hospitality clients.”
The Descartes solution enables Dahlgren to pick complex multi-piece orders, with full confidence in the items and quantities being fulfilled. “Our high-value inventory requires traceability at the carton level,” noted Appleby. “For large shipments with hundreds of items, we can easily scan individual orders and the Descartes system recognizes that they’re part of one larger order. Clients appreciate custom carton labels and packing lists with a detailed breakdown of all items and quantities that inform them which box the items are in.”
In addition, because the Descartes solution is cloud-based, Dahlgren no longer has to invest the time and costs associated with maintaining its previous on-premise application. Results
“Descartes OzLink delivers the picking efficiency, scalability, and packing and shipping verification we were lacking. While the size and complexity of orders vary greatly, the solution has helped us to increase order accuracy, cut fulfillment cycles, and improve warehouse performance while meeting the exacting standards of our clients.”-- Lana Appleby, Technical Product Manager, Dahlgren Duck
Consistent Order Accuracy
Dahlgren reduced picking and packing errors through barcode scanning and order validation. With Descartes, the luxury furnishings supplier can rely on accurate order fulfillment for complex, multi-item orders and during seasonal order volume fluctuations.
To streamline consolidation for SWOG (Ship With Other Goods) orders, the Descartes solution links multiple individual orders for a customer into a master shipment. This also allows Dahlgren to provide detailed packing lists to simplify the receiving process for clients.
Faster Fulfillment Cycles
The Descartes OzLink solution drives order fulfilment efficiency. The warehouse team is more productive, using handheld barcode scanners to accelerate the picking process and ensure order accuracy to reduce time-consuming mispicks.
Enhanced Customer Service
With tighter inventory control and operational efficiency gains on the warehouse floor, Dahlgren has honed its customer experience, providing faster, accurate order fulfillment with enhanced visibility for complex orders.