Time Management of Deliveries

Time Management of Deliveries

Do you really want to leave a patient in the middle of a treatment to sign for deliveries? Herbs, acupuncture needles, office supplies, and other packages always arrive at the most inconvenient and unpredictable times.

UPS, FedEx, and DHL (the most common shipping companies) have delivery schedules that change often. In addition, the drivers are in a hurry and cannot wait around to find someone for a signature.

If you or your receptionist are not available at the moment of the delivery, then instead of receiving needed supplies or herbs, you will get a note with instructions stating:

  • They will try to deliver the items again on the next business day, or
  • Where you can go to pick the packages yourself, or
  • Instructions to contact your supplier because the packages have been sent back.
It is a terrible feeling to be waiting for supplies to arrive only to find you missed the delivery driver.

To assure you never miss a delivery, put a reliable system in place. Use the following tips to get your system started. 

Tip #1: Call each company who delivers your supplies and products and ask them to place in your account file, "No Signature Required". Under most delivery circumstances this will allow the driver to simply leave the package without requiring a signature.

Tip #2: Have clearly marked area with a sign indicating exactly where you want your packages placed. A sign with, "Deliveries HERE" works fine.

Tip #3: Get to know your delivery person's name. Introduce yourself and personally request where you want your deliveries to go and let them know you appreciate them. A little courtesy goes a long way.

Tip #4: Have one person in charge of unpacking deliveries and making sure the correct items are accounted for and the charges are right. Compare the order with the items on the invoice. Mistakes happen! Call the company immediately if you find any errors.

Tip #5: For C.O.D. deliveries, make the check out in advance. (At the time of the order request the exact dollar amount, including shipping and any C.O.D. charges.) Keep the check in a labeled envelope in the cash box so anyone who accepts the delivery can provide the driver with the correct payment.

Whether you are a solo-practitioner or you have an office staff, taking precautions and assigning tasks will help your office to run smoothly, even when faced with unexpected circumstances.