Whether or not you believe in Santa, you probably empathize with him if you are in retail or logistics during the holiday season. Nearly every year, November and December sales increase, and it sounds like 2019 will be no exception. The National Retail Federation projects this year’s total retail revenue to surpass 2018 by 3.8-4.4 percent, up to $3.82-3.84 trillion.
Brick-and-mortar stores and e-commerce sites will be slammed, with seasonal staff being pushed to brink, while sorting facilities, warehouses and other supply-chain touch points scrambled to fulfill orders and keep products moving downstream. This is to say nothing of the strain on the reverse supply chain; last year, CBRE estimated that $37 billion worth of consumer goods were returned from whence they came.
Any shred of efficiency that can bring down costs and improve coordination among 3PLs, retailers, white-glove delivery services and other supply-chain stakeholders was a godsend this time of year. That’s exactly what two-way radios rentals provided: cost-effectiveness and crystal-clear audio for retail and logistics staff. When deployed at scale, these seemingly small handheld devices had a huge business impact.
Benefits of Renting Two-Way Radios Over Buying
From sorting facilities to the sales floor, there were many excellent reasons to invest in two-way radio rentals for the holiday rush instead of purchasing.
Consider the sheer enormity of the seasonal workforce. In 2018, retailers and logistics companies hired a projected 700,000 seasonal employees, according to CBS News. For context, here’s a peek at what some of the leading businesses December additions looked like:
- Target: 120,000 hires.
- UPS: 100,000 hires.
- FedEx: 55,000 hires.
Two-way radio rentals were made for such massive but temporary workforces. The cost of renting a single two-way radio is but a fraction of the price paid to own one. More importantly, the anticipated size of a seasonal workforce changes each year. Supply-chain stakeholders obviously do what they can to anticipate personnel needs months in advance of the holiday hullabaloo, but once you buy something, you own it.
Alternatively, you can rent two-way radios based on your projected need for that year, ensuring that you actually maximize the value of what you pay for. Think of this way: If you purchase thousands of radios exclusively to accommodate a seasonal workforce, they’ll literally sit and collect dust for the rest of the year. Not to mention, the volume varies from year-to-year, so some of those radios may not even be put to use during the holidays.
What to Look for in a Two-Way Radio Rental Service
If you’re already sold on the idea of renting push-to-talk radios, the first thing to look for is the quality and performance of the devices. To that end, you can’t go wrong with Motorola two-way radios. They’re reliable, they’re plug and play, and they come straight from one of the (if not the) most trusted names in communication technology.
Secondly, a strong two-way radio renter will provide data when supply chain stakeholders need it. For instance, high-level managers may want to know which radios are being used at a certain location, how they’re being used, how many are actually online and so on. This could be for quality control, as a way to help inform future order quantities, and a variety of other purposes. Regardless of the ask, an accommodating vendor with responsive sales personnel can provide this information in a timely manner.
A third consideration is consistency. Each year, a reliable vendor will have batteries, radios and chargers ready at a predetermined pickup point when your business needs them. Each hub will also know exactly where and when to return the devices. Likewise, licensing and pricing should be consistent across all locations where you’re using the devices, and all technical specifications should be fulfilled exactly as requested.
Finally, there’s billing. Many two-way radio rental providers expect to be paid on monthly cycles, which is perfectly reasonable for relatively low-volume orders. However, when those orders start getting into the thousands, and they’re distributed to hundreds of hubs, a retailer or 3PL suddenly faces the prospect of paying thousands of separate invoices. It’s therefore important to work with a vendor who will try to consolidate billing where possible, and will provide some flexibility to help you simplify your own administrative mayhem.
Learn More About Two-Way Radio Rentals
Day Wireless Systems provides nationwide communication rental services and has one of the largest Motorola two-way radio rental inventories in the US. Our seasoned experts are ready and willing to provide any additional information or insights you might need about two-way radio rentals.
Contact us today to learn more.