Fan feedback is critical to the folks behind the Bethesda Gear Store, but we don't want to just listen to fan feedback - we want to get into action!
The Gear Team values all of the comments and emails we receive from our fans. We have been working behind the scenes to address some of the most crucial feedback we have received. One of the most significant projects we have been undertaking has been an overhaul of our fulfillment process. There is a mountain of logistical issues to be resolved when you take on overhauling just a complex system, but we have gotten to the point where we can now announce...
We Are Moving!
We have spent the past few months investigating how to improve our fulfillment system. In the end, we decided that another third party vendor could not address our requirements for quality shipping in the manner in which we were willing to accept. After lots of research and analysis, we chose to spin up a new division of Development Plus, Inc and create our own logistics division so we could better control the fulfillment experience for the fans of the Gear Store.
What does that mean to you?
Changing fulfillment logistics is a considerable undertaking. There will be advantages and improvements that you will get to experience. There will also be short term impacts due to the change. We want to be very transparent about what is going on, how it will impact you, and why it will be worth it. Let's start by talking about the advantages.
- High-Quality Packaging. We care about your collectible items. We know how important it is to get your Gear, and it's packaging, whole and intact. To provide you the highest quality service, we will employ a well trained White Glove packing team to care for your orders - with a particular emphasis on the high-value collectibles and lithographs.
- Faster and More Efficient Order Fulfillment. When it comes to ordering, one of the biggest questions has been, "When will my order ship out?" By taking control of the process, we have dedicated ourselves to meeting or exceeding our shipping policies and getting your orders out the door to you quickly! We won't bore you with all the details of how we are accomplishing the overhaul. Still, we have been putting into place new software integrations, operating procedures, and a lot more processes that will provide you with a better service and ordering experience.
- More Shipping Options and Pricing. Another advantage of bringing the fulfillment process in house is that we can negotiate directly with carriers about services and pricing. The logistics team has been hard at work doing just that. We will have some new services available when the new warehouse spins up, and we will continue to offer additional services and pricing as time goes on. We are committed to constant improvements in this arena - we will always strive to provide better services as they become available!
- Accurate Fulfillment. When you order a specific item, you want to get that item - and no surprises (unless it is an unexpected gift keychain or another promotional item). Our new systems will increase the accuracy of pick and pack services. Our intimate knowledge of the products we develop will also increase efficiency as our team will be able to identify the Gear by more than just a barcode.
How does this affect you?
Now that we've talked about the improvements let's talk about the impact.
Starting at December 28th, we will be loading up all the inventory and shipping it across the country to our new warehouse operation in Oregon. That means there is going to be some disruption of fulfillment services while we do the inventory transfer and re-stock the new warehouse. We've waited until after the holiday rush, but let's be honest - there is no right time for the warehouse to be out of commission.
What is the plan?
All orders, starting December 28, 2019, will be held for shipment until we complete the warehouse transfer. Our estimated completion date is January 15, but that is dependent on a whole bunch of factors (weather, speed of tear-down and set-up, inventory audit, etc.). We will endeavor to be as transparent as possible throughout the operation. We'll be doing periodic updates on the process in our social channels, Gear Maniac blog, and our Gear newsletter. So keep an eye out for updates as we progress.
more to come...