SIP team visits the DHL parcel centre in Aschheim

Created by Stephan Hufschmid at 13:01 on January 19, 2024

Many people think it's easy: one click on "order now" in the online shop and 1-2 days later at the latest, the parcel is on your doorstep or ready for collection from one of the numerous parcel stations/parcel shops.

However, many online shoppers are often unaware of what happens after "we have received your order" and the finished parcel arrives on their doorstep. Internally at SIP Scootershop, we usually have a daily fulfilment rate of 90%, depending on the season. This means that, thanks to our automated picking and packing processes, orders that we receive before 12 Clock are dispatched on the same day. This fills us with pride and we are constantly working on possible improvements.

But what happens after the handover to service providers such as DHL makes our performance seem like a drop in the ocean. While we send around 1,500 parcels a day at SIP during the peak season, DHL sorts many times that number per hour at the Aschheim parcel centre! How is that possible? Do only robots work there? What do they do better than us, and how can we further improve our quality in the future? We asked ourselves these questions and visited the parcel freight centre in Aschheim near Munich - the most modern logistics freight centre in Europe, which was opened in 2023. SIP employees from incoming goods, dispatch and SIP staff from sales were given an informative Guidance through the business premises and the sorting facility.

Parcels of various sizes move along the sorting belts at a speed of 2.4 metres per second and are scanned from six sides to record their size and weight and, above all, to identify their destination. A sophisticated emergency system with several conveyor belts ensures that even if one belt breaks down, the average daily volume of 900,000 parcels to be sorted does not come to a standstill. There are scanners, parcels, conveyor belts and even more scanners everywhere. It's like Swiss clockwork - only with parcels - really impressive!

72.000 parcels per hour

The 176-metre-long building on Klausnerstrasse with an area of over 16,000 m² is Deutsche Poster DHL's 38th parcel centre. In combination with the existing Aschheim I parcel centre opposite, it forms the Group's largest parcel centre in Germany. According to Poster, the centre can process up to 72,000 parcels per hour at full capacity.

Contrary to the assumption that everything is controlled and fully automated by AI, this is not the case. As soon as we arrived, we were given an insight into the site command centre. It is above this AI, which monitors all other AI systems, that is responsible for coordinating incoming mail vans and the armada of incoming yellow lorries. According to DHL, this coordination can only be achieved through human experience due to the complex and dynamic processes involved. Even the recoding of illegible labels and the repackaging of damaged shipments are carried out by hand. No artificial intelligence or robots - real people doing their job at a breathtaking speed so that we receive our parcels as quickly as possible!

The SIP team is very grateful to DHL for this revealing insight. In particular, the information on packing quality, labelling and the posting process has helped us move forward, and the SIP process improvements taking place here will also offer added value to SIP customers in the future. A big THANK YOU also to the individual DHL employees in the various parcel centres. Too often we forget the heroes behind the "we have received your order" message. Thank you - you guys rock!

SIP meets DHL
Stephan Hufschmid
Stephan Hufschmid

Stephan Hufschmid has been part of SIP Scootershop since 2001. As sales manager, he is responsible for the strategic orientation of our sales channels. In addition, he is in charge of parts of the quality and complaint management as well as the MALOSSI Germany brand management. His passion are Vespa smallframe models. But also nostalgic "plastic bombers" like ZIP, NRG or Aerox are not necessarily unpopular models with him. His current vehicle is a Vespa GTS 300, of course with Malossi engine upgrade and SIP styling parts: Performance & Style.