UPS Around the Globe

(Part 2)

 

Research and Development

 

UPS focuses on performing in the most efficient way possible and they use both high-tech and low-tech solutions to save time, space and money. UPS developed it’s own bar coding system, that is made up of a series of dots and is called `UPS Code.’ Trucks are precisely loaded with packages by address and in order of delivery. UPS has a very low-tech solution that saves them thousands of gallons of gas and thousands of miles each year. UPS plots out their routes to incorporate as many right-turns as possible, up to 90% of the turns made during UPS delivery routes are right-turns. Now they use computer programs to plot out the delivery routes with the most right-turns possible, which used to be done by managers driving the routes and mapping out the right-turn intensive routes. The right-turn strategy has been in use at UPS since before anyone who currently works for the company can remember. In 2006, the right-turn strategy saved UPS 28,541,472 million miles and 3 million gallons of fuel. Without the use of their efficiency strategies and right-turn philosophy, UPS would have to put an additional 1,100 trucks on the road each day. (ABC News Article)

 

Human Resources

 

UPS currently employs 425,300 employees worldwide, with 358,000 employees in the United States and 67,300 employees internationally in over 200 countries and territories worldwide. (UPS Fact Sheet, UPS HR Diversity) One of the Human Resource highlights for UPS in 2007 was that they company reached a 5-year labor agreement with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters 10 months before the expiration of the current contract, which ended in July 2008, which covered some 240,000 UPS employees. (2007 Annual Report)
UPS encourages employee dedication by offering many different stock option incentive programs to employees. (UPS Business Profile) UPS utilizes a policy to promote employees from within the company, which also cultivates employee dedication. UPS values diversity and strives to obtain, train and retain talented individuals in the company. (2007 Annual Report) With employees in over 200 countries, UPS considers diversity a ?mindset of inclusiveness, respect and cooperation? which strengthens their bond with their suppliers and customers around the world. (UPS HR Diversity)

The employees at UPS are recognized for the hundreds of thousands of hours of volunteer work they contribute in communities through the `Neighbor to Neighbor’ program at UPS. Employees at UPS are encouraged to volunteer in the communities where they live and work because the employees are the first to see problems in the community like homelessness, abuse and under-educated people. They also interact with the youth, which UPS recognizes as the future. (UPS HR Community)

In recent years, UPS has won many awards for business, technology, diversity and community. These awards and accolades include: 50 Best Places to Launch a Career, 50 Best Companies for Minorities, 100 Best Places to Work in Information Technology, Corporate 100 for Providing the Most Opportunities to Hispanics, and America’s Most Admired: Top 10 Most Socially Responsible Companies. (UPS HR Awards)

UPS offers a complete benefits package for all of the employees, including part-time hourly workers, and is ranked 8th on Money magazines list of `Corporate America’s Best Benefits.’ (UPS Health and Welfare, UPS Compensation) Benefits available to employees include: medical, dental and vision insurance; prescription drug program; life insurance; supplemental group universal life program; business travel accident insurance; sickness and accident insurance; long-term disability with inflation coverage; long-term care insurance; child/eldercare spending accounts; healthcare spending accounts; and cancer insurance. They offer a full-line of other benefits that help balance employees home lives with work. These benefits include: paid holidays, vacation and leaves of absence; adoption assistance program; cultural gift matching program; dependent children scholarship program; education tuition assistance program for employees and family members; legal services plan; employee discount program; employee mortgage program; technical and management development training; and many other benefit options. (UPS Health and Welfare) UPS also offers the following compensation and savings benefits: employee discounted stock purchase plan; 401(k) savings plan with 100 percent match on the first 3 % contributed; defined benefit pension plan; competitive salaries; managers incentive plan (profit sharing). (UPS Compensation)

UPS recognizes education and training as core values to the company. They encourage employees to further their education by offering the `Earn & Learn Program’ to all employees, even part-time hourly workers. `Since 1999, UPS has paid out more than $47 million in tuition assistance and has helped more than 30,000 student employees attend college.’ (UPS Earn and Learn) Even as a part-time employee, UPS offers $3,000.00 per calendar year, with a lifetime maximum of $15,000 of assistance. Part-time management employees earn and learn benefit is increased to $4,000 per year with a lifetime maximum of $20,000 of assistance. The earn and learn assistance is available from the first-day of employment. (UPS Earn and Learn)

 

Strengths

 

UPS has several competitive strengths including one of the most industry extensive integrated global ground and air networks, which handles all levels of service through one integrated pickup and delivery service system. UPS also consistently develops technology that improves customer business processes. They have an extensive offering of delivery options that allow customers to choose the most appropriate option that meets their needs. Their philosophy of treating each customer as if they were the only customer, builds a long-term customer relationship. UPS possesses strong brand recognition that they believe stands for ?quality service, reliability and product innovation.? Dedicated employees are also one of the strengths of UPS, and their dedication is a result from their distinctive ’employee-owner’ concept. The employee-owner concept is facilitated by employee stock ownership and the company maintains several compensation programs that are stock-based. The balance sheet for UPS reflects a financial strength that very few companies can match. (UPS Fact Sheet)

 

Weaknesses

 

Although UPS is the largest package delivery company in the world, they compete with many local, regional, national and international shipping companies. They experience strong competition from postal services internationally, motor carriers, express companies, freight forwarders, air couriers and other similar companies. (UPS Business Description)
Another weakness that UPS has, which also affects their competition, is the steadily increasing cost of fuel. The weakened United States economy is also affecting the company. The continuously rising prices of crude oil, decreasing international shipping volume and the weakened economy have caused UPS to have to announce lower earning expectations for the 2nd quarter of 2008. This announcement caused the stock value to reduce by 6% the day of the announcement on June 26, 2008. (InvestorPlace)

 

References

 

(2007). UPS Freight Launches Reliability Guarantee. Partnership. Retrieved July 14, 2008.

Berman, Jeff (2008). Trucking News: UPS Freight rolls out reliability guarantee north of the border. Logistics Management. Retrieved July 14, 2008.

Dlugosch, Jamie (2008). UPS Delivers Bad News. Investors Insights. Retrieved July 14, 2008.

Rooney, Brian (April 4, 2007). UPS Figures Out the ?Right Way to Save Money, Time and Gas. Retrieved July 14, 2008.

UPS 2007 Annual Report. Retrieved July 14, 2008 from: http://www.ups.com.

 

 

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