Michael Tierney, UPS Canada president, joined the staff at the courier company’s new Nanaimo distribution centre for the morning staff meeting Wednesday.
The meeting added coffee, donuts and a ribbon cutting ceremony to the staff’s regular round of muscle stretching and morning safety advisory announcements when Tierney, regional management and local staff officially opened the company’s newest distribution centre.
The facility, located at 425 Madsen Rd., actually started operations in early October and serves the Nanaimo region with 20 delivery trucks and a total of 39 employees.
The centre is the eighth UPS distribution centre in B.C.
“Really, it’s not much more complicated than our customers have continued to ask us to expand in Canada, which we’ve been doing,” Tierney said.
UPS, which actually started in Seattle, Wash., in 1907 as the American Messenger Company, now has about 50 distribution outlets across Canada. The company opened a previous distribution centre in Nanaimo in 1989, which was short lived due to a slack economic conditions at the time. Until October, UPS contracted other carriers to make its deliveries in Nanaimo.
The new Nanaimo distribution centre allows the company to operate more efficiently.
“Part of us coming to Nanaimo is we will have more control over things so we can improve time in transit and delivery, certainly on the Island where we’ve begun connecting the dots from Campbell River down to Victoria,” said David Mason, B.C. division manager. “So we can provide better times in transit into and out of the Island. Those are key areas we’ve been able to improve in.”
The Nanaimo distribution centre is ironing out the work flow with its staff – a blend of new hires and long-time UPS veterans – as it moves into what is traditionally the courier company’s busiest time of the year. Mason said business has already exceeded company projections for the Nanaimo centre. The company opened a distribution centre in the Comox Valley this week as well.
“We have even more that we plan to do once we get sort of settled here, we’re going to be heading into our busiest season,” Mason said.