Issue Date: April 2015 enews, Posted On: 4/20/2015
Case Study: Come Snow, Ice, or Rain, Eastern Connection Delivers for HT Berry
HT Berry Company, based in Canton, Mass., is a leading distributor of paper, disposable products, and janitorial supplies as well as a leading provider of sustainable solutions. Founded in 1964 in Boston’s South End, this family business has been serving businesses across the country for over 50 years, including thousands of customers along the Eastern corridor. During this time, HT Berry’s shipments have endured hundreds of major storms, but none as bad as the epic blizzards of 2015.
Fortunately, all of the company’s parcels were delivered this winter without a hitch, thanks to the ground service of Eastern Connection (EC)
Exploring New Routes
HT Berry’s operations and customer base have grown significantly throughout the years, and the company is always looking for ways to optimize delivery efficiency. In dense areas, HT Berry uses its own fleet of 14 trucks to deliver larger orders, and for many years, it relied on national carriers to deliver smaller parcels. About four years ago, the company was considering alternative delivery options and was approached by Chris Higgins, Director of Business Development at Eastern Connection.
“We’re never opposed to finding new ways to improve our services,” said HT Berry’s CEO Jane Busconi. “The national carriers are good at what they do, but we also value flexible, personalized customer service, so we decided to try a regional carrier. What we didn’t realize at first was how efficient regional carriers can be, including their service in severe weather conditions.”
HT Berry decided to engage Eastern Connection partly due to its customized, two-piece minimum shipping program EC offered at a lower price point. The company also appreciated the guarantee of next-day ground shipments, something the giant carriers can’t match.
The plan was for Eastern Connection to assist and strengthen HT Berry’s already strong delivery service into additional, far-reaching areas in New England.
Along with cost savings, HT Berry gives EC high grades for its personalized and attentive customer service. Carol Mitchinson, Director of Customer Relations at EC, works closely with HT Berry to ensure that all account matters are resolved “almost instantly,” accordingly to Busconi.
Weathering the Storm
This past winter presented many potential pitfall (and potholes), with record amounts of snow and freezing temperature in parts of the Northeast. With airports closed and roads blocked, Busconi feared that the company would miss critical delivery deadlines, since that had sometimes been the case in the past.
Busconi was pleasantly surprised. “EC has been phenomenal in the snow,” she said. “We have not received one weather-delay-related complaint from a customer all season long.”
In an effort to make operations even more efficient, HT Berry has reconfigured its shipping routes and continues to rely on EC for competitive rates, personalized service, and reliable deliveries, even in the worst weather. At the same time, HT Berry continues to work with the nationals outside EC’s service area.
The diversification of carriers makes sense, and the regional advantages are clear.
“EC isn’t just ‘another vendor’ to us,” said Busconi. “EC is a trusted business partner.”