When doing your own deliveries, is it worth all the hassle?

Why do it all yourself? Count on Sierra Courier to get the job done while saving you money and the hassle. Sierra Courier delivers hundreds of shipments every day and to put it simply, We Deliver! Let our next delivery to be yours.

 

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13182519_sA study by the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) in the U.S. shows that trade show attendance has increased steadily since 2009, a trend that will likely continue through 2015. More than 80 percent of the people who visit trade shows are decision makers, with purchasing power for their company. If you are participating, it’s imperative that you make the best possible impression.

This likely means a large and carefully designed display, along with plenty of samples of your company’s products, and accompanying literature to distribute to potential customers. You’ll have plenty of signage, and likely some specialized furniture as part of your display.

Co-coordinating a trade show exhibition is, for many businesses, the single largest and most important marketing activity of the year. When you’re considering the logistics of moving your exhibit from place to place, think about Sierra Courier as your go-to transportation company. We have lots of experience in trade show work, a flexible fleet of vehicles on the road at all times, ready to take care of your largest and smallest needs.
We will reliably ensure that your convention or trade show materials are picked up at your door, and delivered on time to any facility in North America, ready for you to set up and sell.

Since 1976, Sierra Courier has established itself as the courier of choice for all kinds of deliveries in this city. As a Winnipeg business, we take the success of your operation to heart.

To find out about the trade show services Sierra offers, contact us at 1-866-575-ASAP.

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Running a businessThere are a lot of reasons to choose a courier service when determining how to get items from A to B. Here are the ones we think are most important to our customers:

  1. Save Time
    It’s much faster to call a courier company to come to your address and pick up a package to deliver across town than it is to drop what you’re doing, get in your car, and deliver it yourself. Using a courier frees you up to do the things you need to be doing – like running your business.
  2. Save Money
    The courier business is highly competitive, and prices for deliveries across town and across the world are probably less than you think. It’s likely much more cost-efficient to send something by courier than it would be pay an employee to do it.
  3. Meet Deadlines
    At Sierra Courier, we know about deadlines. Our regular courier service within Winnipeg is 3 hours, but we do have 2 hour and 1 hour service. We also have the capacity to deliver your item downtown within 25 minutes, and other areas of the city within 40 minutes of your call. For those emergencies (and they do happen) we have a vehicle standing by to do direct drive service anywhere in North America. We have pickup and delivery service available to you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
  4. Make Sure Your Shipment Gets There
    We know where your package is every second of the time it’s in our possession, and so do you. eTrac allows you to place orders for shipping, follow your package every inch of the way, and notifies you the second it gets there.
  5. Make Sure it’s Done Right
    We’ve become Winnipeg’s courier of choice because of our attention to detail. No matter what your needs are, you can rest assured that Sierra Courier will do what it takes to meet them. Around the corner, or around the world, we take your shipping needs seriously!
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Shipping GiftsYour gift says something to its recipient.  Maybe it’s “Thank You”.  Perhaps “I Miss You”.  Or maybe even “I Love You”. No matter what you intend to say, if your gift gets destroyed in transit, it will say, “I didn’t know how to pack this correctly.” At Sierra Courier, we move all kinds of items – from the everyday to the downright unique.  We’ve moved live animals, human skeletons, and a planeload of poop.  Whatever it is you’re sending, we can help you make sure it gets to the destination intact.

Packaging The key to having your item arrive at its destination is appropriate packaging.  While we treat every package like it’s our very own, things happen in transit.  The better care you take in wrapping your item, the more likely it is to survive.  The choice of an appropriately sized outer box is important.  This is the most protective part of the packaging, and it should not be too much larger than your item, but should be large enough to hold some internal packaging material (like rolled or shredded paper, polystyrene packing peanuts, corrugated cardboard, or foam sheets) that will prevent your precious cargo from smashing against the side of the box. You should wrap items that you can in enough paper or foam that you can’t tell what they are by feel, and loosely fill the “air” in the box with cushion to protect the gift in the event of a knock or drop.

Climate Control If you plan your item’s trip, it’s possible to keep the interior of your package at a temperature that will protect perishable goods from freezing or thawing, despite the harsh climate they may experience during transport.  Chocolate gifts must be kept cool enough to survive prolonged periods in the hot sun on the tarmac.  People successfully ship all kinds of perishable goods, including live seafood products by planning in advance.  Make sure that whatever technique you’re using to keep your item cool will last at least 12 hours longer than the trip is planned to take.  Some shippers use dry ice for refrigeration, but frozen gel packs are almost as effective, and far less hassle.

Communication Make sure you let us know about special items.  We’ve got lots of experience in doing the nearly impossible, and we’ll be happy to share it with you.  When you call Sierra Courier for a pickup, let the dispatcher know if your cargo has special handling needs.  We’ll do our level best to accommodate and get the job done right, so your gift sends the intended message.

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22 daysAs proof that you can send just about anything by courier, music star and actress Beyoncé has recently launched a company called 22 Days Nutrition that will provide delivered vegan cuisine.

The thinking behind the 22 Days concept is that it takes 21 days for a behavior to become a habit.  By providing support over the first three weeks of lifestyle change, the company is aiming to change lives for the better.

All meals on the plan will be 100% plant-based, with no genetically modified ingredients.  They’ll be gluten, soy, and dairy product free, as well as organic.

Beyoncé’s partner in the business is her long time trainer, Marco Borges, who has authored several books on exercise and diet, and is a big proponent of a plant-based diet.  Delivery will take place once a week, on Fridays.  Food will be shipped anywhere in the Continental United States in a reusable cooler box, kept at an appropriate temperature with frozen gel packs.  Prices will range from $9.76 to $16.50, with delivery charges between $9.95 and $19.95

There are plenty of meal delivery services, but very few with the scope that Beyoncé’s company has.  In the case of 22 Days Nutrition, it takes a small service and makes it potentially huge.

It’s great to see the impact that reliable courier service can have on people’s daily lives.  Is delivery service something that your company could benefit from?  Give Sierra a call, we’d love to help.

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Cost ComparisonSmall businesses are busy places.  No matter what kind of operation you’re engaged in, it always seems like you are one step from disaster.  There’s always a situation that requires a response – a customer request for something you’ve never really thought about doing before, a limited-time opportunity to bid on a new contract, or a need to move products or papers across town in a hurry.

As the proprietor of the business, you have a vested interest in “getting it done”.  If something needs to be somewhere, you’ll just take it yourself, or get one of your trusted employees to take it for you.  Sure, it costs you time and money, but it’s got to be cheaper than a courier service, right?

Well, maybe not.  Once you factor in all the costs associated with you or an associate delivering something, you might find that you would have been much better off hiring a courier to do it for you.  Here’s a list of the costs you incur when you do an emergency drop-off by yourself, or using your in-house staff.

1)      Productivity Cost – You and your employees have a job to do.  If you’re driving a package downtown in traffic, you aren’t doing your job, so somebody else has to pick up the slack, which takes him or her away from their job.  Eventually, you’ll pay for the lost time in overtime fees, or by calling another employee in to cover.

2)      Fuel and Mileage – Gas isn’t cheap, and wear and tear on a vehicle is a real factor.  If you use your own car, it might come directly from your own pocket.  If it’s an employee, you have to compensate them for it.

3)      Parking – Especially with the ongoing changes to the parking regulations in the downtown, it’s getting more expensive to park in Winnipeg.  And you certainly don’t want to risk a ticket or a tow.

4)      Insurance – If you use a vehicle for business purposes, the cost of insurance goes up.  If you use your vehicle for commercial purposes without the right insurance, you risk some stiff penalties, and could perhaps not have your costs covered in the event of an accident.

Once you figure in all the associated costs, it’s probably a lot more economical (and certainly easier) to call Sierra Courier to deal with a delivery, in-town or across the world.  We’ll come to your office to get it, and guarantee that it will be where you need it to be, intact and in time.

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Small and mid-sized businesses, often lauded as the “engine that drives the economy”, are finding themselves throttled by Canadian inter-provincial trade restrictions and onerous record-keeping requirements.

Canadian BusinessDespite the restrictions, nearly three quarters of Canadian small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) do business with partners in other provinces, and more are planning to expand to do so in the next few years.

The impact of these restrictions is particularly pronounced in the Western provinces.  Saskatchewan, for example, has been consistently topping the growth statistics for the past few years, and its many emerging businesses are finding restrictions that inhibit their business when working across Provincial borders into the rest of the country. Continue reading

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In a word, competition.

If you sell products to businesses or the public, your business is engaged in the most lopsided battle since David vs. Goliath faced off.

CompetitionGiant corporations (we’re not going to name names here, but we all know who they are) offer well-priced goods with ridiculously short delivery times.  While everybody knows that these big companies can’t offer the same level of personalized service that a smaller enterprise does, often this advantage is outweighed by the promise of lightning quick order fulfillment.

You can fight the giants, with the help of a third-party logistics provider (3PL).  3PLs offer warehouse space, shipping, and even Pick and Pack logistics services on a scale that most small businesses simply cannot afford, because they consolidate their logistics service for many small businesses under one roof.  Your operation doesn’t have to lay out the massive capital required to establish and staff a location in a region where you need a distribution centre.  You partner with an expert, and pay only for the space and services you need, when you need them. Continue reading

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Air TransportWhile not nearly as serious as the disasters in the Wesley Snipes film featuring airborne snakes, passengers and crew were surprised to find their October 2nd flight from New York to Charlotte, North Carolina delayed by the discovery of a significant number of crabs in the cargo hold.

The crabs, which were relatively small, had escaped their shipping container, and were wandering about the hold.  While the exact quantity of fugitive crustaceans is unknown, a US Airways was quoted as saying there were “a lot of them”. Continue reading

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The ability of your business to seamlessly fulfill customer orders is one of the key factors influencing the success (or failure) of your client relationships.  As customers pay the bills, it’s pretty important that you fulfill their needs in a consistent basis.  Your livelihood, and that of your employees, depends on your ability to do so.

3rd Party LogisticsIncreasingly, there is competition from large companies that have advantages over the average small or mid-sized enterprise. They own their own supply chains – their own conveniently located warehouses, fully staffed, Pick and Pack their orders into transportation systems that they own.

There’s an old saying about letting the left hand know what the right hand is doing.  One of the big problems that small businesses face in their supply chain management is that their warehouse services and their shipping are provided by different companies.  As a result, communications regarding last minute changes or delays don’t always happen in a timely manner, and delays in order fulfillment can result. Continue reading

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