Package Handling
DCS’s design and engineering team has more than 40 years of experience creating unique parcel handling systems for diverse customer applications. With installations including semi-automated handling in small city distribution centers and fully automated, integrated hubs with advanced conveyor and sorter equipment, DCS routinely thinks outside the box.
E-Commerce and Multi-Channel Fulfillment
DCS designs and implements end-to-end warehouse automation solutions for e-commerce and multi-channel retailers that address numerous workflow challenges. This includes solutions for receiving, putaway, storage, replenishment, order fulfillment, picking, packing, sortation, and outbound shipping. Our custom integrated warehouse, distribution, and fulfillment systems draw from a deep pool of conventional, semi-automated, and automated material handling technologies.
Various Distribution Applications
Whether an operation is considering the construction of a new distribution or fulfillment center, or a retrofit or expansion of an existing facility, it’s important to create a solution that fits the overarching supply chain strategy. DCS has four decades of experience designing and integrating comprehensive, end-to-end material handling solutions that meet a multitude of operational goals. Whether conventional, semi-automated, or fully automated, DCS can help your organization implement a custom solution that meets its goals while maximizing return on investment (ROI).
Supply Chain Consulting
The DCS Supply Chain Consulting team offers a range of services to help your operations address the challenges it faces. Working in partnership with you, DCS consultants analyze your business data- existing workforce, workflow processes, inventory, order data, operations, and more- to determine a strategy that addresses your unique needs. Whether you need an operations assessment, process improvement recommendations, or distribution design services, DCS consultants will help guide you to the material handling system or operational solution that best meets your current and future needs, as well as your budget.
Customer Support
Keeping your warehouse operations and material handling systems running smoothly and at the peak of productivity are the goals of DCS’ Customer Service Team. By partnering with DCS, your warehouse automation solution is supported from commissioning to end of life. You’ll receive comprehensive in-house training of your personnel, including specialized training of your designated internal system expert. Plus, DCS offers a complete package of spare parts and expert system troubleshooting support from qualified engineers dedicated to your installation.
System Design & Integration
DCS offers a broad range of material handling equipment and automated system design, installation, and integration services for a multitude of projects. These include retrofits, expansions, upgrades, and more. While every project is unique, our system design and execution processes are the same, encompassing meticulous attention to detail, frequent communication, and a dedicated partnership with our clients.
About Us
Designed Conveyor Systems (DCS) has 40 years of experience serving major clients in multiple industries by providing material handling, full-scale warehouse operations, and conveyor design solutions that are custom crafted for their needs. DCS does not sell ready-made conveyor systems but builds relationships that empower collaboration to craft custom warehouse designs together. DCS utilizes consulting, engineering design, project management, installation services, and client support to ensure our customers can keep their promises to deliver on time.
With more than 40 years of experience providing automated system design, installation, and integration services, DCS has created solutions for companies throughout the United States in a broad range of industries and markets. We’ve completed more than 1500 projects ranging from greenfield facilities with completely new systems to expansions and retrofits of existing operations.

Last Mile Delivery: Three Strategies for E-Commerce Fulfillment

As e-commerce continues to grow in popularity – up 14.8 percent in the first quarter 2020 over the same period in 2019 – retailers making their wares available online are correspondingly struggling to manage the costs associated with last mile delivery. This final leg of an order’s journey, in which the parcel arrives at the buyer’s doorstep, has become increasingly complex as more shipments are delivered daily to more shoppers.

Customers have also become accustomed to free delivery in less time than ever before; two-day shipping is now transitioning to one-day, same-day or even same hour in some markets. Further, the markets themselves are vastly different. Last mile delivery challenges (and solutions) look very different in the densely populated Manhattan borough of New York City (1.629 million residents) than they do in sparsely populated Manhattan, Montana (1,520 citizens).

The sum total of those kinds of pressures equates to high last mile delivery costs. Research has found that last mile delivery expenses comprise 53 percent of the total cost of shipping. Further, they represent up to 41 percent of total supply chain costs. That’s a high percentage for any organization – large, mid-sized or small – to absorb. Therefore, to better optimize those costs and increase delivery efficiencies, more shippers are currently leveraging one (or more) of three key strategies in last mile delivery of e-commerce orders: cross-docking, third-party logistics (3PLs), and store-based fulfillment.

Cross-Docked Delivery Routing

Cross-docking has been around for a long time as a strategy to bypass warehouse storage of inventory. Instead, a pallet of product from a manufacturer arriving at the receiving dock would be transferred immediately to the shipping dock and loaded onto an outbound trailer heading for a store. This same concept has been adapted for e-commerce deliveries by larger retailers. Mimicking the sorting hubs of large, national carriers – such as FedEx, UPS or USPS – these cross-dock facilities are typically owned by the retailer. Specific parcel cross-docking facilities within their regional networks receive packages from larger, more centralized distribution or fulfillment centers, sort them into discrete delivery areas (by zip code, neighborhood, city block, etc.), and load them on outbound last mile delivery vehicles. These vehicles and their drivers then transport and deliver the parcels to their final destinations. This reduces delivery times and increases shipping efficiencies.

3PL Delivery Service

Well entrenched in warehousing and transportation, many large 3PLs have added last mile delivery service offerings to support e-commerce retail customers. Additionally, a number of small, local and regional 3PLs focused solely on last mile delivery of e-commerce parcels have entered the market. These smaller 3PLs may contract to work exclusively for large online retailers or work independently for multiple small to mid-sized e-commerce and omni-channel sellers. Both types offer cost savings and efficiencies by providing dedicated last mile delivery services, allowing retailers to focus on order fulfillment. As e-commerce continues to grow in popularity globally, so too are predictions for the 3PL market, which is projected to reach $1.2 trillion by 2025, a 7.5 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) over the next five years. Another reason for this anticipated growth? In addition to providing outsourced delivery services, 3PLs also often offer retailers value-added services, such as inventory storage, picking, packing, kitting, and gift wrapping or packaging.

Brick-and-Mortar Fulfillment

Omni-channel retailers with physical stores are increasingly using those locations to fulfill e-commerce orders on a regional basis. If an item is in-stock 10 miles away from the buyer, it can be shipped faster and at lower cost than sending the same item from a fulfillment center 150 miles away. Largely a software-driven exercise, these retailers are also using advanced data analytics to pinpoint customer trends and purchasing habits within specific areas, then routing additional inventory when replenishing those stores specifically for filling online orders. That further reduces last mile delivery times and expenses, as well as minimizes out-of-stocks.

Looking Ahead: Autonomous Delivery Solutions

It wouldn’t be a post about last mile delivery without mentioning some of the autonomous solutions retailers are expected to deploy in the future – such as drones, self-driving cars and robots. Variations of these three next generation technologies are in pilot tests worldwide, with some of the greatest progress occurring in European countries. Of the three solutions, I suspect that drone-based deliveries will be the first to see widespread use within the next five years, particularly for deliveries in more rural locations. That’s because those residences are spread far apart, making it less efficient and taking more time for a driver to reach.

What do you think? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic. Connect with us.



Satyen Pathak, Account Executive,

As an SME in material handling, Satyen has an extensive background in creating solutions for the retail/e-comm, Parcel, Post, and baggage handling market verticals. He has worn several hats including Product Management, Applications Engineer, Technical support and most recently as an Account Executive with DCS. Satyen has conducted numerous educational speaking engagements and has sat on committees for MHI providing directional insight for the industry.