Westset Logistics, a warehousing and distribution brand based in La Mirada, California, is capitalizing on expansion opportunities and growing their operations at a rate unprecedented for west coast third party logistics companies (3PLs). In addition to expanding their Southern California facilities, Westset is implementing sweeping infrastructure and technology improvements to streamline service of their customer base.
Acquisition of More Space
Westset’s physical expansion began with a fortuitous opportunity at their Class A building site in La Mirada. “Our neighbors decided to move out, and we made a strategic decision to lease more space in light of our rapid growth,” says Guy Dominguez, President of Westset Logistics. This more than doubles Westset’s operational space, expanding the warehouse from 101,000 square feet to 230,000 square feet, and adding an additional 15 dock doors to expedite loading and unloading the parade of shipping vehicles that frequent the facility.
The additional loading doors not only improve Westset’s ability to process domestic and international orders from large-scale retailers such as Walmart, Kohl’s, and Costco, but also strengthen fulfillment offerings for ecommerce companies. “It was great working with Walmart on one of their projects, we have a facility that can handle start-ups right through to large corporates and that has been our goal for a while now,” said Guy.
The new expansion and retrofitted interior continue to amaze clients and business owners that deal with Westset Logistics. “I have always been impressed by their clean and organized facility within a Class A building,” says Hema Dey, CEO of Iffel International, upon visiting the facility this month.
Improved Technology and Infrastructure
Square footage alone doesn’t keep an operation like this running, and Westset has revamped both the management of their floor-space and their internal logistics to serve their rapidly growing client base. Shortly before expanding their warehouse, Westset implemented a new, narrower racking system to increase their storage potential, while improving loading systems to speed up access. The new racking model triples the pallet space on each rack, in-turn tripling the inventory potential of the entire facility. The addition of the new warehouse — also outfitted with the new racking system — means Westset Logistics now has nearly six times the potential storage space as this time last year.
Beyond the nuts and bolts, Westset has rolled out state of the art technology to promote efficient use of human resources to reduce overhead, and provide accurate and fast inventory counts. Operators are equipped with handheld scanners similar to those used in retail stores. Scanning any item in the facility tells the operator the item’s contents, and logs it in a centralized database. This ensures accuracy in both order fulfillment and inventory management. Meanwhile, dispatchers use tablet computers linked to a GPS based navigation system to speed up product location and direct operators in real time, minimizing time wasted traversing the huge facility. Finally, all inventory and transportation data is centralized in a cloud-based warehouse management system (WMS), painting an accurate picture of warehouse operations for supervisors, and providing real-time inventory data for clients.
A leg up for ecommerce clients
These infrastructure and technology improvements will improve Westset’s ability to serve clients on all levels, but are particularly beneficial to smaller start-ups and ecommerce retailers in electronics, fashion, home décor, etc. Overhead costs and liability are a huge concern for these operations, so outsourcing to a 3PL makes perfect sense. Westset’s technological upgrades control labor costs across the spectrum, passing savings on to the client.
The nature of electronic retail puts a heavy focus on order accuracy, and the new scanning and inventory technology safeguards the promise made to the customer. And while the WMS software allows businesses to view up-to-the-minute inventory and shipping data, Westset also employs a team of Account Representatives to assist and advise their clients. Retail start-ups can focus on growth and innovation, knowing that their outgoing orders are safe in the hands of Westset’s team.
Their recent expansion and innovation makes Westset a company to watch in the Southern California 3PL market, and if this trajectory continues, their rapid growth is far from over.