This holiday season, Blueair customers will breathe clean air thanks to a CPG supply chain and logistics network in perfect tune with empowered, educated consumers.
Thanks to online information, monitoring technologies and smartphone apps, CPG consumers self-educate about allergens, dust, pollution and other air quality-related topics with more ease than ever before. That’s why Blueair and LeSaint Logistics have teamed up to design a CPG supply chain that gives empowered, educated consumers exactly what they want and when they want it.
Two decades ago, Blueair’s founder Bengt Rittri noticed it was becoming increasingly difficult to live and work in a clean-air environment. So he set out to create the best air purifier in the world not only for his family’s home, but also for like-minded individuals around the world.
As Samantha Colonna, Blueair’s Inventory & Warehouse Controller attests “At Blueair, we believe that clean air is a basic human right. That’s why the people in our company work every day to develop the best air purification systems for the cleanest indoor air quality ever.”
Educated, Health-Conscious Consumers Drive a Different Kind of Supply Chain
Colonna, who oversees orders coming in for air purifiers and related products, has seen a rapid evolution in Blueair’s customers. Thanks to online information, monitoring technologies and smartphone apps, consumers self-educate about allergens, dust, pollution and other air quality-related topics with more ease than ever before. Colonna adds “Customers expect they can get exactly what they want — and fast. That means instead of a few models, customers want to choose exactly the types of features and customizations they want.”
Take air filters as an example. Hotels tend to want high carbon based filters to combat both particles and odor, while an average end consumer may only need particles removed, and don’t have a need for intensive VOC removal. Also, 5 years ago, ‘fast’ meant placing an order and getting it in 5-7 business days. But ‘fast’ today means same or next-day delivery.
Creating a Logistics Network for an End-to-End Customer Experience
True to its founding principles, today Blueair is driven by a simple question: “How many people can we help?” Answering that question with a higher number every time means the company’s logistics network has to deliver a great customer experience from start to finish.
Recognizing that today’s consumers expect a menu of options, well-maintained, high-quality products and fast delivery, Blueair and LeSaint Logistics have teamed up to design a total omnichannel fulfillment solution to a wide range of Blueair customers, such as:
- Blueair.com direct-to-consumers
- North America’s largest home improvement and electronics retailers and their DCs
- Online retailers and their DCs
The solution also includes customizing air purifiers to meet specific customer requirements with assembly and sub-assembly of fans, filters, shrouds and other parts.
LeSaint tests products, including those with smarthome enabled apps, requiring Wi-Fi testing and analysis. For most customers, however, having an air purifier means maintaining it for optimal performance over time.
That’s why LeSaint and Blueair offer a deep cleaning service for units customers send in. Brian Smith, director of operations at LeSaint, says “we deep clean Blueair’s units in 48 hours or less, and then rapidly get them back to their owner. We recognize that many of Blueair’s customers need the cleaned unit to help with severe allergies or asthma.”
Blueair offers a subscription service to its customers to receive filters at an interval of their choosing, which LeSaint continuously implements and fulfills successfully. Finally, LeSaint handles all product returns, inspecting, repairing and recycling units to ensure efficient and cost-effective recovery of the returned goods’ value for Blueair.
Performance that Counts
As customer needs and expectations vary, the cascading impact on the supply chain means product volumes and staffing require flexing as well. For example, during August and September when Blueair’s retail customers stock up for the holiday season, the LeSaint team fulfills 3 times the volume of air purifiers, compared to January through June. Smith says “LeSaint’s shared warehousing facilities in the Midwest and West Coast give Blueair the space they need to flex up or down, and also allows them to reach 92% of our customers with same-day or next-day delivery.”
Despite this variability, LeSaint and Blueair are exceeding their performance goals for the logistics network, including:
- 98.99% On-time shipping
- 99.95% Shipping accuracy
- 95.5% Inbound Trailer Putaway Timeliness
- 100% Customer Returns Putaway Timeliness
- 99.88% Inventory Unit Accuracy
Contributing to the achievement of these goals is LeSaint’s proprietary 360 Logic ™ program. 360 Logic ™ has introduced significant improvements in employee ergonomics and productivity by making workspace improvements based on Lean 5S principles.
“We’re able to get this kind of outstanding performance because LeSaint is constantly helping us find better and smarter ways to fulfill products. Their willingness to make suggestions and collaborate with us — whether it’s a way to re-use or salvage products or quickly turn out a highly customized special order —makes our business more efficient and helps us grow” concludes Colonna.