Sometimes a retailer or distributor will ask their suppliers to put their stock into a different format, in order to aid identification or handling. This can be something as simple as adding an extra label, or in some cases, removing items from one box and putting inside another. This process is known as reworking.
For example, a supermarket may be running a special offer on shaving products, whereby they give away a free razor with every two bottles of shaving gel.
This might involve a dedicated in-store display with the three products inside a special box or perhaps inside cellophane wrap. The key thing is that the three items must be joined together, ideally with a new barcode.
Both of these unique products need to be taken out of their respective locations in a warehouse and placed together with the new packaging, then one or more new labels need to be applied. When you scale this up to a few thousand units for a few hundred stores, the task can become too huge to be managed with your normal resources.
There are companies out there who operate purely to carry out such reworking projects, typically charging the client a small amount per resellable unit. Two of item A and one of item B becomes one new unit, let’s call it AAB. They may also calculate another fee for sourcing the new packaging and printing new barcode labels. It might work out as 60p per unit, but this adds up and a large project can easily run into several days and thousands of pounds.
The scale and variety of a rework job can vary hugely, and dedicated rework houses tend to operate using temporary or seasonal staff. The business model works on an equation that weighs up the cost per hour of paying the staff, the time it takes to rework one unit, and the price the client is willing to pay for the project. A good warehousing operation though, should be able to offer a reworking service in-house. The saving the client makes is by not having to transport the goods to a new location and set up a trading relationship with a new company.
Businesses in Northamptonshire and Leicestershire can take advantage of the extra resources on hand at the NX Group. Across three different-sized facilities in Daventry and Crick, NX have the space and personnel on hand to fulfil most moderately sized supply chain projects.