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On the Front Lines: Fulfillment and Supply Chain

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June 6, 2014
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On the Front Lines: Fulfillment and Supply Chain

FrontPoint has grown tremendously over the past several years, which is a great sign. And during this rapid growth, we’ve managed to maintain our amazing culture and family-like atmosphere. But we have to admit, it’s become an incredibly large family.

There are so many faces now that it’s a little more difficult to understand what other areas of the company do, and how it all comes together. And that’s why we’ve developed a couple of ways to help strengthen and reinforce communication between employees.

One of these ways is called ‘On the Front Lines,’ a culture and engagement initiative that allows FrontPoint staff to get a behind-the-scenes look at how other departments work. It’s an immersive experience that helps employees gain a deeper understanding of what happens around FrontPoint, unifying efforts to reach a common goal.

Recently, employees from across the organization were able to take a look at a day in the life of our Fulfillment and Supply Chain teams.  These two teams largely operate under the radar, even though they are primarily responsible for making sure our customers receive exactly what they order. It was eye-opening experience for many.

learn intro

“It really shed light on why Fulfillment requests certain things from the Support and Sales teams,” said Dustin Farmer, Senior Customer Support Specialist.

Here’s what the rest of the experience was like.

The Supply Chain Team

We started with the Supply Chain (SC) team, the group that ensures your equipment is ready for use – before you even order it. That’s right, every single piece of equipment is carefully inspected and then prepared in a process called prefillment. By the time you receive it, all you need to do is set it up and use it.

learn sc

The SC Technicians are also responsible for many other important tasks, such as working with vendors, defect testing on returned equipment and maintaining inventory counts.

You’d think that dealing with all this equipment (there’s a lot), boxes and other materials, there’d be plenty of wasted materials, but that’s far from the truth. We learned that the SC team is dedicated in their efforts to recycle as many materials as possible, including cardboard and pallets.

The Order Production Team

Most of the results of Supply Chain’s work is then passed into the hands of Fulfillment, beginning with the Order Production (OP) team.

The OP Technicians are responsible for programming and processing all orders – entire system and additional equipment – swiftly and accurately.

While watching the techs perform this task, it seemed pretty standard, until we realized that they went the extra mile to customize every single order to a customer’s specifications. It’s definitely more than just pulling inventory off a shelf.

“I saw them program the equipment,” said Bethany Silva, Junior Graphic Designer. “It was incredibly technical – I never knew how complex it all was!”

Complex is the perfect way to describe what the OP team does and yet, they manage to make it look routine. What’s even more amazing is that the team is always undergoing change, constantly looking to improve their processes and eliminate chances for error.

The Order Assurance Team

Customizing every order is a tricky process and could lead to a lot of errors, but it doesn’t thanks to the Order Assurance (OA) team.

The OA Technicians specialize in quality control: working with the OP team to ensure every order is in perfect condition and customized without any errors. And they do an amazing job at it (we were told that 99 percent of items shipped out were accurate, according to customer feedback).

Of course, their goal is to hit 100 percent accuracy and they are continuously updating their methods to reach this goal.

The OA team’s attention to detail carries over to the packaging and shipping of the security system.

Packing and Shipping Home Alarm Systems

A lot of love goes into the packaging of each FrontPoint system. The box was specifically designed to limit the movements of the Control Panel and security sensors. And during the packing process, we watched as the OA Technician carefully organized the contents of the shipping box to limit the damages that could be caused during the shipping process.


A Special Emphasis on the Customer Experience

Uniting a large number of employees together is a difficult task, but ‘On the Front Lines’ has already shown positive results.

“The best thing about ‘On the Front Lines’ was the ability to sit down and have some hands-on experience,” commented Silva. “It was an awesome experience because not only was I able to get to know some of the guys, I was also able to see firsthand the work they do, and now I appreciate it that much more!”

learn program

“It was great to be able to better understand the day-to-day activities of our Fulfillment and Supply Chain teams,” added Farmer. “I also liked the fact that ‘On the Front Lines’ is a hands-on environment. It’s a great way to be able to determine what we can do to make jobs easier for others.”

We’re going to keep showing you moments in the life at FrontPoint, so make sure to keep coming back!

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