A DSD merchandiser looks at her Zebra handheld mobile computer while standing in front of a rack of bakery items
By Mark Butler | June 5, 2024

What Will It Take to Make Direct Store Delivery More Manageable and Cost-Effective?

You need to get more SKUs to more stores more frequently, which means you may need to enlist the help of more drivers and merchandisers. So, you may need to rethink how you plan, coordinate, and execute DSD.  

Mark Delaney has seen the power and the pitfalls of direct store delivery over the years, both in a professional and personal capacity. He has come to understand what must happen in the first, middle, and last miles to ensure that the right product is stocked on shelves at the right time, in the right way, with the right pricing.  

That’s why I asked him to join our latest episode of the Your Edge podcast. 

Mark is now the Mobility Solutions Leader at Körber Supply Chain Software, where he’s leveraging his extensive experience in retail and consumer packaged goods to help manufacturers and their distributors find new efficiencies in their operations. One area in which he helps drive improvements is direct store delivery (DSD). In the past, he has also advised supply chain organizations from the point of production to the point of sale on how to get goods to customers more quickly, sustainably, and cost-effectively. 

So, I asked Mark if he could share his thoughts on: 

  • What retailers and their distribution partners upstream must do to scale operations faster and make sure DSD drivers and merchandisers can move faster to serve more customers and get more products to market.

  • How direct store delivery has changed for better or worse in recent years and what it takes today to keep DSD operations running smoothly from the first to the last mile. 

  • What types of changes CPG companies should consider making to their DSD operations and systems, especially if trying to get costs down or reduce waste.

  • How environmental sensors, RFID, and other data collection technology could help improve DSD outcomes as well as overall production planning and inventory management for CPG companies and retailers. 

  • What software might best support information flows and other communication between field and production facility teams and how AI should factor.

  • Whether there is a cost-savings argument, or maybe even a sustainability benefit, to using DSD for all food and beverage, health and beauty, or even electronics categories.

Hear what he had to say:

Prefer to listen later? Download the MP3 to listen offline:

What Would Make Direct Store Delivery More Efficient and Cost-Effective?

Podcast, Podcast, Interview, Automation, Partner Insight, Digitizing Workflows, Handheld Mobile Computers, New Ways of Working, RFID, Scanning Solutions, Software Tools, Tablets, Wearables, AI, Manufacturing, Retail, Transportation and Logistics, Warehouse and Distribution,
Mark Butler
Mark Butler

Mark Butler is a Global Partner Manager within Zebra’s global sales team and is the global leader for Zebra’s partnerships with both HP, Inc. and Körber Supply Chain. Mark has a focus on Zebra’s AMR and warehouse strategies with Körber and Zebra’s Managed Print and Government strategies with HP, Inc.

Mark is based in Cleveland, Ohio. He has been working within Zebra’s channel go-to-market organization since 2011 and has 20+ years in the industry. 

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