Consumer delivery company Hermes has completed the construction of a secondary sortation tier at its fully automated distribution hub in Warrington, providing the capability to process up to one million parcels a day.
The purpose-built, 15,000 sq m state-of-the-art Warrington hub was initially opened in May 2014, costing £14m and representing the largest single investment by Hermes in its history. The second tier, which has cost a further £10m, allows Hermes to continue to support retailers that are witnessing significant growth in online sales, especially during peak periods. Hermes has also announced it will be creating an additional 400 jobs during the peak period to support its Warrington operation.
The second tier project commenced in January and was completed on time and to budget, with work being carried out during the evenings to prevent day-to-day operations being affected. The additional capacity at Warrington will play a key role in plans for further international growth and the increasing requirement from UK consumers to receive next day deliveries.
Most significantly, the investment allows Hermes to ensure that its operations can be easily and efficiently scaled up and down upon demand, whilst being equipped with the necessary infrastructure to cope with growing volumes during longer periods of intense activity.
Martijn de Lange, COO at Hermes, said: “With the significant growth in e-commerce, and the emergence of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the supply chain industry remains under continual pressure to increase capacity.
"This additional investment will ensure that retailers can continue to have full confidence in Hermes’ ability to provide exceptional levels of service at all times, especially during the upcoming peak season, and for many years to come.
“Our preparation for Peak 2015 began as soon as Peak 2014 drew to a close. We are working alongside our clients to finalise our plans by analysing forecasted volumes and confirming collection schedules. In addition to Warrington, we have also added another 125 sub depots to our network and increased the number of scanners and handheld terminals across the business.
"During the peak season we will also have 200 additional advisors across 19 client sites to deal exclusively with any enquiries; 3,000 more couriers and our money back delivery guarantee campaign will also return this Christmas.”