Thursday, November 3, 2011

Memphis Day 2 - FedEx

Tonight, we were taken on a private tour of FedEx at the Memphis World Hub.

Check out what we saw in this 2 min video:

We arrived at 10pm in order to see all the action, because that's when all the packages from North America start arriving to be sorted.
The FedEx facility is like a small city, with up to 35,000 employees working in Memphis (1 in 5 homes in Memphis has a FedEx employee).
I'm sure I can only scratch the surface of what we saw on our night tour, but here goes a few highlights.
  • As we entered the facility, it is part of the Memphis Airport, so thousands of employees were being screened (they kept their shoes on) just like we do when we go thru an airport. What was amazing is the main shifts started about 10pm and workers are not allowed thru security more than an hour before their shift. Imagine starting and finishing every shift at your company that way?
  • How FedEx works is all packages picked up that day in North America are shipped to a hub like Memphis where the planes are unloaded, the packages resorted to their new destinations and loaded back on the new plane bound for delivery. All this is accomplished overnight in 4-5 hours while sorting over 800,000-2.5 million packages.
  • We were taken to a air control tower to watch planes landing. Off in the night sky, you could see a dozen or more lights in the sky as planes approached at a rate of one landing every 90 seconds!
  • We toured inside their small package sorting facilities where over 42 miles of conveyor belts directed packages at incredible speed.
  • Errors on 800,000 packages sorted are said to be on average 12 ERRORS per day!
Here is a 7 minute video showing the building and the complete HOW TO of FedEx.