At Metro Interior Distributors, every team member knows that on-time delivery is job one. In fact, our entire organization is built around prompt fulfillment. Each employee at Metro understands that late deliveries are a huge problem for our customers. That’s why we have dedicated pros who are up before sunrise, making sure each order arrives on time every workday.
Meet Robert Levering
Metro delivery driver Robert Levering is an experienced pro. He is tasked with ensuring that the final on-time delivery details are met, and because he’s at work at 3:00 A.M., he gets to see the sunrise in Manhattan every workday.
Levering has transported Metro building supplies to many landmark projects in Manhattan, including Google, Hudson Yards, World Trade Center, the Empire State Building, the Museum of Modern Art, most of the Broadway theatres, The Hard Rock Café, as well as frequent deliveries to Rockefeller Center.
Many of Levering’s deliveries take him into Manhattan, so he’s seen it all. “Deliveries in New York City can be very exciting,” he says. “I love my job because every day is different. There are always new challenges to meet in this city!”
At Work at 3:00 A.M.
Construction starts early in NYC, so Levering is usually on the road before sunrise. “I get up at 2:00 A.M.,” he explains, “and get to the yard at Metro by 3:00 A.M. After I arrive, I go through all of my tickets.” And then the deliveries begin.
Many building product orders are delivered to a sidewalk by the work site. “I’ve been delivering to construction sites in Manhattan for a long time. I usually start delivering before sunrise. Sometimes, I’m asked to drop off supplies even before workers arrive. The good news is that I’m usually in Manhattan by 3:30 A.M., so I have the sidewalks to myself, which makes deliveries much easier. When I can get a jump on it, I don’t have to worry about parking or holding up traffic.”
Delivering Building Supplies Comes with Challenges
Deliveries are rarely simple or straightforward. “When I have to deliver on very narrow, one-way blocks, that can be tough,” Levering notes.
“Often, there’s parking on just one side of the street. That means I’ll have to disassemble the entire truckload on the sidewalk and move the delivery across the street in packets. Most people wouldn’t believe the lengths we go. For example, the block for the delivery address can be so congested with cars and construction sites that there’s absolutely no place to park for access. When this happens, we typically end up driving a block or two away to actually find a spot. Then we unload the truck two blocks away and use the sidewalks to move stuff to the loading dock. It can take three or four trips up and down the blocks just to complete the delivery. With the amount of construction that’s going on in the city, this happens all the time.”
Cooperation and Communication Are Critical
Although Levering does all he can to deliver building materials on time, he emphasizes that customers also play an essential role. “One of the most common delivery issues is when the site isn’t ready. If they want a 6:30 A.M. delivery, and the customer doesn’t show up until after 6:30, that’s a delay. And if that customer also has to check in, get some paperwork, and then come back to the loading dock, it really eats up time for the customer and for us.”
It’s also a problem if Levering doesn’t have the contact information for the person on the job. “Sometimes, Metro was given the wrong contact number, and that number doesn’t belong to the person in charge of the delivery on site. Nobody likes to play telephone tag. So we try to make sure we have the phone number for the guy who’s on the job.”
Big and Small Orders
When asked if big or small deliveries are more challenging, Levering replies, “Both!”
“Big deliveries can take a long time,” he says, “because there is a lot of coordination. First, you’ve got to unload your truck and then get it out of the way to make room for the next flatbed. Next, you unload that second trailer and get him out of the way. And the same with the next trailer and the next. It’s quite a process, and it can take hours.”
But smaller deliveries also present challenges. “Sometimes, I can have eight stops packed on my truck, so it must be loaded in a certain way for balance and stability. Unloading can feel like a game of Jenga. You have to remove certain pieces. Then, as you make your rounds, you need to readjust and stabilize the loads each time. It requires a lot more time and care on our part to make sure every order is delivered intact.”
Let’s Talk More about On-Time Delivery
If you want to work with a building supplies distributor that takes delivery times as seriously as you do, contact us today to speak with a sales rep to discuss your delivery needs. We’re up for the challenge!
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