United Pallet Network (UPN) now has over 90 members in the UK and is moving to new and larger premises, only a short distance away from the present ones, in which it expects to be fully operational by May 2020. The company was established in 2001 as a provider of high-quality palletised freight services, and with the number of members it now has, covers the whole of the UK, Ireland, and Europe.
UPN claims to have developed unique IT support which enables its’ members nationwide to deliver first class services to the customers in their area. UPN’s members are its’ customers, and in that respect, it is unique, unlike some of its’ pallet delivery competitors. It works very hard to ensure that they can provide the services that their customers need.
The company offers a range of different pallet options ranging from the Micro pallet up to one that is 2.2 metres high, known as the Full pallet. This means that UPN caters for every possible requirement when it comes to pallet shipping and delivery. In turn, that means that, whether directly or indirectly, UPN deals with a very wide range of household name brands across a wide number of verticals.
UPN Managing Director, David Brown, says "UPN has established a strong nationwide brand reputation. The UPN brand is associated with "first class travel for palletised freight". Our members are able to buy into this brand to offer a strong nationwide pallet delivery service as a part of their service proposition. Our seamless nationwide delivery service for palletised freight is enhanced by our operational and IT support teams."
UPN recognises the importance of getting goods on to shelves at the right time and in perfect condition, without any problems. Businesses are always looking to shorten lead times and optimise "just in time" opportunities, while at the same time keeping their costs to a minimum. Many companies spend huge amounts on marketing and promotions, and, as David Brown says: "We are the people who make sure that it gets there".
Eighteen months ago, UPN introduced its’ "paperless paperwork system" which was developed by the in-house IT team and improves the overall quality of service provided, while at the same time saving many staff hours both for UPN and for its’ direct customers. It also has a small environmental effect in that it saves trees. This is in spite of the fact that the overall volume of business is ever-increasing.
With over 90-member transport and distribution companies nationally, this means that they can all offer their customers some very big benefits. One of these is what happens when a customer has some sort of emergency, such as a machine going down and needing spare parts urgently, or one of their customers requires something collected and delivered to another part of the UK the same day.
With so many different options available, UPN members can guarantee to provide pickup of an urgently needed pallet or pallets on the same day within an hour or so, no matter how large or small the consignment may be, and it can then be transported to wherever it is needed and delivered on the same day.
Some UPN members even provide night-time and weekend deliveries, so it doesn’t matter how urgently the pallet needs to be delivered to the end customer, UPN can do it. It is a question of everyone working together in harmony and providing the service that the end customer wants. That, of course, requires the use of the IT systems that UPN has developed so that everything runs seamlessly, and the pallets get delivered on time every time.
UPN now also has online KPI’s which means that their members can now monitor and fine tune their own performance in order to benefit other members nationally, and ultimately the end users, wherever they may happen to be.
David Brown says that their goal has never been to be the biggest pallet network. "Our goal is to manage strong, steady, stable growth right across our nationwide membership. I am pleased to say that UPN is in really great shape for a strong and progressive future."
Asked how he would sum up the company in a tweet, Brown said: "UPN – quality driven, member focused, IT innovators, pushing forward service excellence within the pallet network sector to even greater heights!"