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New Healthcare Clients Drive SCI Growth

SCI Launches New Healthcare Facility in Mississauga

TORONTO, Feb. 5, 2019 – SCI (www.sci.ca), a leading Canadian 3PL logistics company, has announced the launch of its new healthcare-dedicated facility in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada.

The 150,000-ft2 fully-licensed distribution centre (DC) represents SCI’s latest investment in healthcare logistics aimed at helping over-the-counter healthcare product and medical device companies manage their omni-channel supply chains within Canada. This latest facility increases SCI’s overall footprint to over 4 million square feet across Canada with a total of 30 distribution centres.

The multi-client DC is equipped with state-of-the-art technology for storing temperature-sensitive healthcare products such as drugs and natural health products; as well as offering a high throughput automated order-to-kit operation designed for the OTC and Consumer Packaged Goods industries. In addition, SCI can provide distribution services, warehouse management, transportation management and late-stage customization solutions such as labeling, product kitting and configuration, and repackaging.

This new distribution centre will be managed under SCI’s Quality Management System, which operates rigid process controls through all areas of the supply chain. This ensures healthcare clients will effectively comply with Canadian regulatory standards and safety protocols. Sensitivity and security of the customer product and reputation are paramount to SCI.

“This announcement demonstrates SCI’s continued investment in the integrated healthcare network. Our goal is to help manufacturers lower costs, streamline inventory, and meet increasing demands posed by ecommerce, trading partners and Health Canada” says Peter Tostevin, Vice President Healthcare, SCI. “This investment comes on the heels of a year of significant growth in our healthcare logistics division.”

“We’re thrilled to be opening our brand new Healthcare facility”, says Chris Galindo, President and CEO of the SCI Group. “This is a continuation of our strategy to invest in leading technology, resources and infrastructure to support client growth.” As more healthcare companies diversify into new markets, we can play a significant role in the evolution of this important sector.

About SCI
SCI is one of Canada’s leading providers of supply chain solutions that go beyond traditional logistics services. SCI’s tagline “We’ll make you even better” is a commitment today from a business that’s leading clients into tomorrow.

Trusted by clients in the retail, e-commerce, technology, and healthcare sectors, SCI operates the most extensive national distribution and transportation network in Canada, consisting of 30 distribution centres coast to coast along with over 40 critical parts stocking locations and specialized white glove shipping hubs.

SCI shares the learnings from the sectors they operate in, providing the audience with information to guide their supply chain to success through blog posts, case studies and white papers.

For further information, please contact

SCI | www.sci.ca | Natasha Wookey | (647) 237-4972 | natasha.wookey@sci.ca

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How E-commerce Platforms Can Make Your Supply Chain More Effective

Visibility throughout the entire supply chain is a process that every company aims to achieve. Effective integrations between supply chain systems and e-commerce platforms allows complete visibility to stock levels, tracking information, order notifications, and all other crucial data that exist in warehousing and fulfilment operations.  Knowing exactly where a product is within the warehouse will increase your speed to market and efficiency in inventory replenishment.  Integrating existing warehouse management system (WMS) and the e-commerce platform provides supply chain managers with a seamless flow of data between both systems, eliminating disruptions caused by inventory variations and logistical operations.

This visibility to supply chain and e-commerce data can also be passed through to mobile devices and other connected technologies.  By doing this, companies are provided even greater access to important business data to help understand any gaps and inefficiencies within the fulfillment processes. For example, once a product gets shipped, the shipper can update the tracking code which will become visible to the warehouse manager, the business owner and the consumer. This not only creates a better customer experience, it also ensures the supply chain team that the product has been delivered to the correct destination on time. 

How platforms like Shopify are changing the game for supply chain integrations

Over the past few years, a number of tools have been developed to streamline the entire ecommerce process from payments to order fulfillment.  As these tools add more features, it makes even more sense for larger businesses to integrate with these platforms.  Even website build platforms like Wix and Foursquare have developed their own form of e-commerce solution.  However, one platform seems to be staying ahead of the competition.

Once a small business solution, Shopify has now proven itself as a major enterprise e-commerce player, and large businesses have been quick to realize the benefits it has to offer, with features such as order processing & fulfilment tools, payment system integration, support for multiple Country sites (i.e. .com and .ca), as well as performance reporting and insights. The key tools that are changing the way that Shopify integrates with 3PL’s include, inventory management, inventory tracking, and purchase order tracking.

As ecommerce platforms give sellers more complete solutions for their ecommerce operations, 3PL services need to ensure they have the capabilities to integrate with each new software development.  Everything from tracking when an order comes in to sending a tracking code to the consumer should be seamless.  If everything is seamlessly integrated properly, 3PL companies can use analytics to track trends in peak fulfillment times, revenue of orders shipped by day and sales by channel to make informed supply chain decisions based on historical data.  Companies eliminate the possibility of human error, for instance, if an order is placed and gets sent automatically to the 3PL instead of an employee manually sending the order, there is no risk of duplication or incorrect information and your orders will get processed by your supply chain provider faster.  This creates a process which will reduce returns, exchanges, expedited shipping and replacements.

Advances in technology enhancing overall experience

Recent enhancements to ecommerce interconnectivity include integration with social media networks such as Instagram, Facebook, and Buzzfeed, tracking conversions through enhanced analytics and monitoring all interactions on one platform. These features allow curated shopping experiences, enabling visitors to convert and complete their purchase directly on those apps and networks, reducing friction in the customer journey and seamlessly flowing orders into the system.  Virtually unlimited APIs and plug-ins allow for simplified connections to internal and external data sources, while built-in tools are available to enhance almost any aspect of the customer shopping experience, as well as back-end systems. These tools include: enhanced return label functionality, returns tracking and automatic tracking code updates.

As the flow of orders speeds up, supply chain and 3PL logistics providers are forced to find efficiencies in their processes to keep up with the increased demands.  With the right integration, processes including order picking, returns and shipment visibility can be optimized to keep up with customer demands and expectations.

Getting ecommerce Implementations right the first time

As the purpose of these advanced features is to improve the customer experience and streamline the e-commerce process, it’s expected that your supply chain partner will be on top of the most current trends. SCI’s approach to integrations includes leveraging our internal talent to build flexible applications that work with any e-commerce platform, such as Shopify, NetSuite, Oracle, and others.

SCI’s proven track record of success with e-commerce integrations have created a wide variety of communication protocols that are used throughout a business’ internal and external systems. All integrations developed and implemented by SCI are mapped to the individual requirements of each business and the systems they work with. Linking systems between customers, suppliers, and other business partners requires extensive expertise and a clear understanding of corporate information security standards. SCI always makes security and data protection an essential element of any integration implementation.

Staying one step ahead

Leading the way in e-commerce requires an emphasis on continuous improvement, which translates to not only being on the forefront of integration technologies, but actually having experience working with them.  SCI is constantly working with the most current technologies, functionalities and features to improve their overall business.  We keep a constant eye on the latest trends and ensure our employees are trained on the newest technologies.

Enterprise and larger e-commerce retailers need partners like SCI to ensure their system integrations are implemented correctly and securely, to maximize their effectiveness.

Contact SCI today to learn how a custom systems integration can benefit your business.

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SCI’s Partner is Pioneering Infant Nutrition Initiative

SCI’s Partner is Pioneering Infant Nutrition Initiative

SCI delivers new Canadian D2C Infant Nutrition program with RB Health (Canada)

TORONTO (ONTARIO), November 19, 2018 – SCI www.sci.ca, a leading Canadian 3PL logistics company, has partnered with RB Health (Canada), the leader in the North American Infant Nutrition, on a unique Canadian program for their Enfamil family of brands (https://www.enfamil.ca).

SCI will provide direct-to-consumer (D2C) supply chain services for RB Health (Canada) as it launches Enfamil into new Canadian channels.  This unique D2C offering will allow parents to have peace of mind by ordering all their infant nutrition products direct from the manufacturer.  Additionally, Mead Johnson will offer its customers special product promotions and additional support resources to help families navigate the early years of childhood.  The pioneering D2C initiative, underscores Enfamil’s leadership position in the Infant Nutrition market.

RB Health (Canada) partnered with SCI to provide fulfillment services for the D2C platform, as a result of their extensive healthcare ecommerce experience and direct linkage to the largest delivery network in the country.  SCI provides national fulfillment out of its healthcare campus in Mississauga, with the ability to support RB Health (Canada)’s footprint across Canada.  RB Health (Canada) will also be able to take advantage of SCI’s unique product kitting and value-added services.

enfamil

“We are thrilled to support the strategic move of RB Health (Canada) into the D2C space.  We see this as a key focus area for all fast moving consumer package goods companies, and RB is a first mover in the space” says Peter Tostevin, Vice President Healthcare, SCI. “SCI has successfully launched the RB Health (Canada) D2C program, and we are looking to rapidly expand in the near future.”

 About RB Health (Canada)

Reckitt Benckiser acquired the Mead Johnson Enfamil family of brands in January 2017, including Enfamil A+, Gentelease and Nutramigen + with LGG with a strong focus on the health and development of infants and children. We are the only global company focused primarily on Infant and Child nutrition. That singular devotion has made our flagship “Enfa” line the leading infant nutrition brand in the world. Today, RB Health (Canada) develops and markets safe, high quality, innovative products that help meet the nutritional needs of infants and children. With more than 70 products in over 50 countries, RB Health (Canada) products are trusted by millions of parents and healthcare professionals around the world.

About SCI

SCI is one of Canada’s leading providers of supply chain solutions that go beyond traditional logistics services. SCI’s motto “We’ll make you even better” is a commitment today from a business that’s leading clients into tomorrow. Trusted by clients in the retail, e-commerce, technology, and healthcare sectors, SCI operates the most extensive national distribution and transportation network in Canada, consisting of 27 distribution centres coast to coast along with over 40 critical parts stocking locations and specialized white glove shipping hubs.  SCI shares the learnings from the sectors they operate in, providing the audience with information to guide their supply chain to success through blog posts, case studies and white papers.

For further information, please contact

SCI | www.sci.ca | Natasha Wookey | (647) 237-4972 | natasha.wookey@sci.ca

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2018 SCI Annual Meeting: Focus. Excellence. Future.

On Tuesday March 20th, the company came together for an unforgettable day of networking, participating, learning, and celebrating – the 2018 SCI Annual Meeting. The annual event got everyone aligned around the guiding principles of Focus, Excellence, Future.

What lies ahead for SCI?  How we plan to make our teams even better?   How we plan to help our employees become even better as leaders? The SCI executive team answered these questions while our team members got a chance to reconnect with their peers from across the country, meet new people, recognize the Continuous Improvement and Safety award winners, and have some fun while we learn new things together.


Click above to watch a video: 33 SCI facilities won the Safety award


Click above to watch a video: 16 Continuous Improvement award winners


Click above to watch a video: The SCI Award of Excellence winner: Wendy Leblanc

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Top 3 Reasons for Canadian Companies to Invest in their E-commerce Teams

Every year, Canadian companies are faced with challenges on how to allocate their finite resources in order to achieve the highest possible return on their investments. Often times, these decisions can be extremely difficult. Many different departments within a company may present similar or equivalent opportunities for growth, making the choice of where to direct resources all the more challenging. However, there are other times when market trends and technological changes will make the correct path very clear and obvious. At this moment, the argument for investing in e-commerce teams is a strong one, and the potential gains are substantial.

In this article, we will examine three critical statistics and trends that clearly illustrate the importance for Canadian companies to invest in their e-commerce departments. Taking action now to boost the capabilities of your e-commerce team will help ensure your company can capitalize on these trends, gain competitive advantage, and deliver a better overall customer experience in a challenging marketplace.

Let’s take a look at the first trend in Canadian retail e-commerce, and what it could mean for your business.

1 – E-commerce revenue in Canada is projected to surpass $25 billion by 2020.

Source: https://www.statista.com/statistics/289741/canada-retail-e-commerce-sales/

It’s tough to scoff at a number like $25 billion. By the year 2020, Canadian e-commerce revenue is projected to surpass $25 billion as Canada’s economy continues to grow and consumer shopping habits maintain their shift towards online retail options. If your company wants to take part in that growth and gain a larger share of that revenue, then now is the time to increase investment and resources in your e-commerce team to handle the demands of marketing, customer service, and order fulfilment through your online channels.

2 – E-commerce share of total retail sales in Canada has doubled since 2012 to over 8% and is projected to surpass 10% by 2020.

Source: https://www.statista.com/statistics/379117/e-commerce-share-of-retail-sales-in-canada/

Not only is the overall dollar value of e-commerce revenue expected to grow, but the percentage of total retail sales from e-commerce channels is also projected to increase steadily. Since 2012, the e-commerce portion of total retail sales in Canada has grown from around 4% to over 8%. This growth is not expected to stop any time soon, and by 2020 the portion of sales from e-commerce is estimated to reach over 10%. This trend illustrates the evolving customer preferences towards online retail, and the increasing effectiveness of e-commerce solutions to meet the demands of customers. As more and more customers choose to do a larger portion of their shopping online, Canadian businesses must ensure that they are delivering a positive customer experience through their online retail channels.

3 – Hybrid e-commerce models like click-and-collect helps reduce delivery expenses which are 85% of costs occurring in the last mile of delivery.

Source: https://retail.emarketer.com/article/ecommerce-canada-its-time-has-come/58acceae9c13e50c186f6f31

As impressive as those first two statistics are, it’s not just the sales numbers and percentages that are important to note. Consumer shopping habits are constantly evolving, forcing companies to adapt or die to an increasingly diverse set of customer experience requirements. In this case however, these requirements are taking the form of a hybrid between traditional brick-and-mortar retail and e-commerce to deliver added convenience for shoppers.

To cite one popular example, Canadian grocer Loblaws now offers customers the ability to place their order through an e-commerce platform, and then pick up their order at the grocery store location of their choice. You may have already seen the ‘Click and Collect’ parking spaces marked at many Loblaws or Zehrs grocery locations in Canada. Other retailers are also adopting this model, with Walmart being one of the most recent to implement it in Canada.

This eagerness of customers to choose a click-and-collect method of shopping carries with it an added benefit to businesses, since it helps to alleviate a significant portion of delivery costs. Studies have shown that approximately 85% of delivery costs are incurred in the last mile of delivery to the consumer. Using a click-and-collect model offers substantial cost savings for companies, along with convenience and time-savings for their customers.

What These E-commerce Trends Mean for Your Business

It may come as no surprise that these trends all point to the need for your business to rethink your approach to e-commerce and its importance in your organization. While the fact that sales volumes are projected to continue growing may be the biggest influencing statistic, don’t overlook the need for an enhanced e-commerce experience to meet changing consumer expectations. Packing, fulfilment and customer service are all essential tasks that will definitely be affected by increased sales volume. You’ll also need to examine your ability to meet the demands of consumers if a click-and-collect e-commerce model is what they are looking for. Your retail stores may not be capable of performing these tasks in their current state and may need to be upgraded or retrofitted in order to provide click-and-collect services to your customers.

Regardless of whether your company needs a full overhaul of your e-commerce capabilities, or if they just need to be tweaked and adjusted a bit, you’ll want to ensure that you evaluate all opportunities for improvement and choose the ones that make the most sense for your business. The team here at SCI can help with the e-commerce needs of your business such as warehousing & Canada-wide distribution, transportation management, and more. We will work with you to put the right resources in place to achieve success.

Contact our team of e-commerce experts and we will answer all your questions on how you can take advantage of these amazing trends in the world of Canadian online retail.

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Logistics Challenges Faced by Canadian Businesses

Countries come in all shapes and sizes, but there’s no country quite like Canada. Canadians are used to dealing with long drives and harsh weather, but when it comes to the logistics operations of a business, things get significantly more complex than what is experienced in many other countries. Here, we will explore many of the factors that impact the logistics of a business operating in Canada, as well as explain how many companies overcome these challenges by leveraging the resources of 3PL logistics providers.

Size of Country

For starters, it’s no secret that Canada is simply massive in terms of area. As the second-largest country in the world, Canada has over 9.9 million square kilometers within its borders. This fact alone means that simply traveling from one side of the country to the other requires significant resources in place to successfully make the trip. Couple this with the fact that the Canada is surrounded mostly by oceans, one of which is frozen and inhospitable for a large portion of the year, and you can quickly see how these factors can make transportation of goods quite difficult.

Since the country is so vast, fuel consumption and vehicle maintenance are critical factors in the logistics performance for Canadian companies. There’s simply no getting around the fact that trucks use fuel, and the more miles they cover, the sooner they will require maintenance. Canadian companies must invest substantial resources and effort to maintain an effective transportation fleet, and this investment may result in tighter profit margins in highly competitive markets.

Vast Distances Between Population Centers

In addition to simply being a huge country, Canada’s population tends to be focused on a handful of major city centers, with medium-sized and smaller cities scattered in between to varying levels of frequency. Canada’s two largest cities, being Toronto and Montreal, are separated by a distance of approximately 550k. While this may seem like a significant distance, the third largest city in Canada is Calgary, a whopping 3,400km away from Toronto. Things only get bigger when you consider the distance between two of Canada’s largest ports (Vancouver and Halifax) is over 6,100km.

These distances are staggering, and even with these numbers, we still haven’t taken in to consideration how far north the country extends. Transporting goods across Canada is a mammoth task, and not something that every company is capable of. For nationwide transportation and warehousing needs, 3PL logistics providers are often the only solution for many companies who otherwise simply don’t have the resources or capability to reach all of their markets.

Majority of Population is Near the US Border

While the distance between Atlantic and Pacific oceans is a major consideration for Canadian businesses, so too is the proximity of the bulk of the Canadian population to the US border. Recent estimates from the Canadian Census show that of the 23 million people in Canada, nearly 90% of the population lives within 100km of the US border. In addition, with the relatively free flow of goods across the border in both directions, Canadian companies must face the reality that their logistics operations are significantly impacted by those of the United States. US customs and border regulations play a major role in the ability of Canadian businesses to transport goods to their customers in major Canadian cities, as well as affect the competitive situation as US products flood these same markets.

Canadian businesses may choose to leverage the international expertise of a 3PL logistics provider in order to more effectively manage these factors, and improve their competitive situation in core markets. 3PL logistics providers help improve overall distribution efficiencies at each step in the supply chain.

Climate Factors

While it may seem stereotypical to talk about the severity of Canadian winters, there is a certain level of truth to it. Winters in Canada can range from mild and short to fast and furious, and sometimes both, even within the same season. The size of the country, and the fact that cities can be found in all geographic areas of the country from mountains to coasts to prairies, means that virtually every major city has a unique climate. For example, Vancouver winters are generally mild, while cities like Calgary get buried in snow, and others like Winnipeg experience plummeting temperatures.

Aside from the obvious need for things like snow tires in the winter, this variety of climates in major cities means that companies who deal with temperature-sensitive products must put extra care and precaution in to their warehousing and transportation resources. Sometimes it means extra heating equipment, while other times additional refrigeration may be needed.

For companies looking to streamline their supply chain and improve efficiencies, investing in the resources necessary to successfully overcome these factors is not always a wise move. Canadian companies can choose to go with a 3PL logistics provider who has extensive fleet resources and a nationwide network of distribution facilities (DCs) that can meet their needs for climate control and product handling.

Conclusion

As you can see, it’s not always easy doing business across a country like Canada. Expanding to a new market in a new city is not a simple matter of an extra hour or two of driving time. These factors mean that Canada is a challenging country for many businesses to thrive in, but they are certainly not insurmountable. Examining the logistics needs of your company, and then evaluating the services available from a 3PL logistics provider can often highlight many positive opportunities. For some, these opportunities may come in the form of additional warehousing or expanded transportation capabilities, for others it may mean a smoother transition of goods across the border or from one ocean port to another.

Whatever challenges your company is facing, you can be sure that a 3PL logistics provider like SCI can help your business succeed in Canada.

There are few companies in the world that can match the resources and expertise that SCI brings to Canadian businesses. Contact us today and let us help you achieve your goals.

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