Challenge with the sustainability of return operations
Ensuring that your sustainability goals are met is of paramount importance to your stakeholders, and we understand that returns can significantly influence this outcome. Mismanagement of returns may have an adverse effect on your CO2 footprint, whereas a well-organized returns process can be leveraged to optimize sustainability. We have integrated sustainability into all facets of our business, enabling us to assist you in achieving your sustainability objectives while monitoring progress in reducing your CO2 footprint.
Sustainability Challenges and How We Solve Them
Check out the list of common sustainability issues that brands face and what we do to help overcome them.
One of the hardest parts about trying to reach your internal sustainability goals is actually understanding your carbon footprint. In order to improve, you must be able to calculate your carbon output and benchmark it so that you can take steps to lower it over time.
At ReBound, we track the sustainability of our partners which means that we can make detailed carbon emission calculations on every parcel which enters our network. Because of this, we are able to provide all of our clients with detailed carbon emission reports, helping them to understand the carbon footprint of their return operations. To learn more about how we calculate carbon emissions, click here.
It can be difficult to ensure that all of your partners are sustainable and to track this over time. Being able to compare each carrier based on their sustainability efforts can also prove to be complicated and time-consuming.
At ReBound, we do all of this so you don’t have to. We developed our Network Sustainability Index survey which is sent to all carriers annually and measures them on 15 factors. The topics covered include operational network, social responsibility, and sustainability strategy to ensure that we get a full picture of how seriously our carriers are about becoming more sustainable.
Answers from the questionnaire are then analyzed and each carrier is given a score based on their performance on a scale of 1 to 10. We consider a carrier to be sustainable if they score higher than 7/10, and our target is to achieve 85% of all our parcels handled by sustainable partners in 2030. Learn more here.
When returned parcels arrive back at a warehouse, they need to be processed. Ensuring that your warehouse operations and processing are done sustainably is another challenge.
Similarly with how we assess the sustainability of our carriers, we also strive to make our warehouse operations more sustainable. This means moving towards using more green energy to run the warehouses themselves, as well as experimenting with reusable boxes and pallets. Although these trials are still ongoing, we aim to implement more initiatives like this as time goes on so that we can eventually be carbon neutral and support our clients in doing the same.
Aside from the first mile transportation, you also need to worry about the sustainability of last mile transport. This plays a big part in the overall carbon footprint of your return operation.
The way we tackle last mile sustainability is by consolidating shipments. With consolidation, items are removed from their boxes and shipped back to our clients in larger boxes where each item is packed more tightly together. This means that no extra space is shipped back, making for a more efficient, sustainable, and cost effective trip back to your central warehouse.
Another part of ensuring a sustainable last mile is smart routing. In many return operations, items are all sent back to a brand’s central warehouse before being sorted and then routed to the next end destination.
Since we register items locally in the same country they’re sent back from, we can already assess the best next destination based on client preferences and can reroute the item so that there are no unnecessary parcel movements.