Cross-Docking: The Efficient Solution for Your Supply Chain

Cross-docking is a supply chain management technique that involves transferring goods from one vehicle to another without storing the goods in a warehouse or distribution centre. A survey by the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) found that 65% of companies are currently using cross-docking or plan to do so in the future. This approach provides numerous benefits for companies looking to streamline their supply chain, reduce costs, and increase the speed of delivery.

In this article, we’ll discuss the key features of cross-docking and explain why it has become such a popular solution for modern businesses.

Cross-docking in action

What is Cross-Docking?

Cross-docking is a process where incoming goods are sorted and redirected immediately to outgoing shipments without being stored in a warehouse. A survey by the Warehousing Education and Research Council (WERC) found that 80% of companies implementing cross-docking reported reduced operating costs. Companies can minimise the handling time of goods and eliminate the need for storage, thus reducing the overall time and costs associated with transporting goods.

Cross Docking Infographic

The Benefits of Cross-Docking

Cross docking offers several key benefits that make it a popular solution for modern businesses:

Reduced Handling Time: By eliminating the need for storage, cross docking minimises the handling time of goods and allows for a more efficient supply chain.

Lower Costs: Cross-docking reduces the costs of storing goods in a warehouse, including rent, labour, and inventory management costs. A study by the American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) found that companies using cross-docking reduced their transportation costs by 4.3% on average.

Improved Delivery Speed: Cross-docking allows faster delivery times, as goods can be transferred directly from one vehicle to another without being stored in a warehouse.

Increased Accuracy: Cross-docking helps improve accuracy in the supply chain, as goods are sorted and redirected based on the customer’s needs, reducing the risk of errors.

How Cross-Docking Works

Cross docking typically involves three simple steps:

  1. Incoming goods are received at the cross-docking facility.
  2. The goods are sorted and redirected based on the needs of the customer.
  3. The goods are loaded onto outgoing vehicles without being stored in a warehouse.

Choosing a Partner

When choosing a cross-docking partner, it is essential to consider several key factors, including:

Experience and Expertise: Look for a partner with a proven track record of success in cross-docking and supply chain management.

Technology: Choose a partner with a modern, technology-driven approach to cross-docking that allows for real-time tracking and monitoring of goods.

Customisation: Look for a partner that offers customised solutions to meet the unique needs of your business.

Cost: Choose a partner with competitive pricing and cost-effective solutions that meet your budget requirements.


In conclusion, cross-docking has become a popular supply chain management technique that offers numerous benefits for modern businesses. By eliminating the need for storage and minimising handling time, cross-docking allows for a more efficient and cost-effective supply chain. It also enables faster delivery times and increased accuracy in sorting goods according to customer needs.

Choosing a cross-docking partner with experience, modern technology, customised solutions, and competitive pricing can help businesses maximise the benefits of this approach. Cross-docking is a valuable solution for businesses to streamline their supply chain and improve their bottom line.

If you’re looking for ways to optimise your logistics, consider implementing cross-docking in your operations! And if you need any help, Clarus WMS can provide you with a powerful warehouse management system to streamline your operations and maximise efficiency. Book your demo today!

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