Fight the War against Misloads in 2012

Discussion in 'UPS Partners' started by UPSSOCKS, Jan 4, 2012.


    UPSSOCKS Well-Known Member

    Too all management out there. Misloads are a big part of our life. We talk about them everyday, we hear about the everyday, yet we still continue to have misloads. If a union employee was loading a trailer/car that had one of their personal packages going in to, do you think they would misload it? Absolutely not so why misload at all? Actually is there really any reason besides a data issue that a package should be misloaded? Misloads are very easy to fix. I encourage everyone of you to discipline to fight the war against misloads. Do not accept misloads at any frequency! For every misload received document and sit down with a shop steward to talk about. If the workers want to keep their jobs misloads will go away! This will be tough at first but you will notice results within weeks.

    Post some stories about what we can do to fight misloads. Give each other ideas. Maybe we are doing something in MESTX that we can start doing in WORMA. Once I was in GVICA and I met a guy that would audit his employees loads before the shift even started. The employees started everyday pulling out audits and they ending up going over 200k without a misload!!!!

    If anything going after a goal makes your jobs more fun and the day go by quicker. It can even make the jobs fun for the employees. Eventually you won't have to discipline anymore.

    Fight Misloads!!
  2. TearsInRain

    TearsInRain IE boogeyman

    you have absolutely no idea what causes misloads, the preloader is not the root cause of them, and discipline is not (directly) the solution whatsoever

    unless you have been a preloader or preload supe since the institution of PAS, you really just don't understand
  3. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    The vast majority of the few misloads that my loader has are his fault. Every once in a while I will find an out of sync that he loaded according to the PAL label--had he checked the PAL against the physical address he never would have loaded the pkg.
  4. Flatman

    Flatman New Member

    Oh, I guess you do your job perfect everyday right?
  5. PT Stewie

    PT Stewie "Big Fella"

    Am old phrase " that is why they put readers on pencils"

    UPSSOCKS Well-Known Member

    First: I never said the preloader is the root cause of them.
    second: I've not had the opportunity to be a preloader but I have had the chance to work as preload management.
    Third: Discipline is the solution!!!

    Now here's what you don't understand. Outside of the center you work in exist other UPS facilities. Misloads occur on all levels and in some cases multiple people are responsible. If you read my post I state "Actually is there really any reason besides a data issue that a package should be misloaded?" Do you understand what a data issue is? Could an error in PAS be a data issue? If so then I am acknowledging PAS could be a cause of misloads.

    So it's ok to say I don't know what causes misloads but your follow up stinks because you do not know what causes misloads. The fact you are trying to justify the existence of misloads makes me think you may be one of the causes of them.

    UPSSOCKS Well-Known Member

    Pretty Much
  8. menotyou

    menotyou bella amicizia

    :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:
  9. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    I do the job to the best of my ability as do most UPS employees. My post was not a slam against my preloader, who does an excellent job. I simply stated that most of the very few misloads that he has are indeed his fault. He loads three pkg cars and his misloads are usually between those three cars. The out of syncs that he loads he does follow the PAL but does not compare it to the physical address.


    That is because they are always being yelled at and pressured to hurry up!
  11. curiousbrain

    curiousbrain Well-Known Member

    I know better ... but it's Friday; gee golly wiz-bang cheese crackers, I'll bite.

    Not a fair comparison; let's see why. If a loader had "one of their personal packages" going in to a trailer/car, they would have specific information to look out for (HIN, PAL, route, zip code, address, etc), which they could then use to identify and pull the package; that is all well and good. However, when the loader is not looking out for a specific package, and is instead loading thousands of packages without watching for a specific one, human error will occur.

    Furthermore, let's think about what "special attention" (as used above, it implies being careful to watch for a specific package - in your case, you defined it as "one of their personal packages") entails - it requires taking the proper amount of time to read the entire shipping label (the rare package has two or more shipping labels), check the PAL against the shipping label if applicable, dealing with HOLD/NIB's, data corrections, or any other number of things, which I shouldn't need to remind anyone who actually has loaded before, consumes precious seconds.

    I have tried to explain this countless times to people who have never loaded before - and I will try to do so again.

    First, a metaphor: Imagine you are trying to learn how to type faster; this is an extremely mundane task, which, when learned properly, involves basic muscle memory and a little bit of mental visualization, in the event that your fingers get "lost" on the keyboard and forget where they are supposed to be. Generally speaking, the faster the rate at which you type the more errors will occur - and even if you purposefully slow down, your fingers occasionally get confused or basic human error occurs.

    In an abstract sense, loading is no different - the unit of work is elongated (reading label, moving if necessary, placing box), but once learned, it is basic muscle memory with a little bit of mental visualization. And, in the same vein, errors do occur based on many factors, one of which is the rate at which the work is expected to be conducted. And, even when the rate is low, similar to typing, errors still occur.

    To make it a little more concrete, when loading a package car at the rate of around 250pph in 3.5 hours, it is so easy to forget where you are standing, because (yes, this may seem farfetched, but trust me it is true) you barely have time to even glance at the signs outside the truck; instead, you are grabbing the package, expecting that you are in front of a specific car, and you step (not pivot or twist, mind you) into the car, adjust the shelf if necessary, load the package, and exit - probably in about 2 to 4 seconds; longer if the truck is smashed and you really have to move things around.

    That rate is not constant - which is to say that if you loaded a package every 4 seconds for 3.5 hours straight, you'd load approximately 3,150 packages. Why is this not the case, then? The general reason is because the longer packages are loaded, the smaller the remaining area is, which in turn means quicker thinking on the loaders feet, which means more adjustment, which means getting more backed up, which means more pressure/stress, which means more mistakes.

    If this statement is true, you are essentially calling the company you work for (or, more specifically, the people that comprise the company you work for) idiotic, as they are unable to resolve a problem that is "very easy to fix".

    There are several possible "results".

    First, any good loader with a shred of self-respect will, under the extreme pressure, become even more hyper-unionized than they may already be. If the temperature in the building is not right, or a management person stares at a package too long, the workplace will become so belligerent that you will actually see productivity drop.

    Second, valuable employees will quit, deciding that the benefits/pay are no longer worth it. In which case, new, less experienced loaders will be hired, productivity will drop and misloads will skyrocket.

    Finally, because the union does not, as far as I know, recognize "production" as anything they have to abide by, maybe the loaders slow down to the point where misloads go down - except, now the rate at which work is accomplished is so slow, that productivity is down regardless.

    As such, these points raise the issue of a cost/benefit analysis: misloads are a problem, but the cost of misloads is balanced by the rate at which packages flow and units of work are accomplished. The reason why misloads are harped on is because it is, to some extent, controllable by having management/loaders dig for them when times are slow - if you actually believe that the expectation is zero misloads, you are out of your mind.

    Probably the best idea in your entire post; an exchange of ideas.

    That is outstanding; but, I should hope I don't need to say to anyone that that is the exception, rather than the rule.

    I agree; the work day can be fun. What is not fun, however, is a "goal" that includes extreme discipline for even the slightest mistake, with the understanding that one mistake will result in some kind of disciplinary letter and a sit down with the shop steward.

    And now, some of my own thoughts.

    Despite the length of the post and my disagreement with the way in which you go about suggesting the achievement of the goal, I do agree with the goal. In the spirit of congeniality, I will offer my own idea about what makes a better loader in two words: training and attitude.

    Instead of one being a prerequisite of the other, they are both required for a good loader: All the training in the world won't matter if a person doesn't care about their job, and caring about their job won't help unless they are properly trained in how to do it.

    And, even when this unlikely combination is found, human error still happens.

    edit: I'd like to point out that even though you do your job perfect everyday, you still had numerous typographical/grammatical errors in your post; not that you claimed to be perfect at typing, but then again no one believes that you (or anyone) are perfect at their job, either.
    Lasted edited by : Jan 6, 2012
  12. TearsInRain

    TearsInRain IE boogeyman

    let me ask you this

    if you suddenly had to run your route in half the time, without following the methods, do you think your work would be done perfectly and safely?
  13. SignificantOwner

    SignificantOwner A Package Center Manager

    The system makes it too easy to misload packages. All the labels look the same and the HIN numbers are the same in every car. I can see how they'd start to all look the same after looking at a thousand HINs a day. Having said that, we definitely need to take appropriate action where preloaders are misloading above the norm. It appears that corporate is in denial about the extent and cost of the misload problem. If not they would have attempted a system fix by now.
  14. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    Our PDS and preload sups have done a pretty good job in trying to reduce misloads in my center. The PDS has added the bid driver's initials to the lane number on the PAL (mine would be 22DB-xxxx) and the sups have painted the lane numbers behind each car, tape the lane numbers on the inside of the car and hang a laminated lane number on the rear of the pkg car.

    As I said above, my loader seems to have the most difficulty with the out of syncs as he does not check the PAL against the physical address. I threw one of those out of the car this morning--it was PAL'd to my car but was going to a town 45 minutes away.
  15. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    There is no question that given more time the preload would do a much better job.

    UPSSOCKS Well-Known Member

    That's a good idea actually, I bet that would be very effective in smaller centers.

    UPSSOCKS Well-Known Member

    To repsond to the long post above:

    You said you used 250 packages per hour as an example. That's 4.16 packages per minute. Monday take five packages and see all the things you can do with those five packages in one minutes time before loading them. Then come back on here and make more excuses for misloading.
  18. upsset

    upsset Member

    4.16 pkg/min is what they get credit for handling but they are probably handling 10 pkg/min to seperate the pkgs for their cars from the rest of the pkgs going down the belt.
  19. curiousbrain

    curiousbrain Well-Known Member

    Way to tackle the real issues at play here; I believe you have shown just how serious you are about "fighting the war against misloads."

    Move along, now.
  20. soberups

    soberups Pees in the brown Koolaid

    If an employee fails to live up to your expectations, the first and most logical question to ask is whether or not those expectations are realistic in the first place.

    Contrast this to the standard UPS management mindset, which is to pretend that the expectations are spite of all evidence to the contrary...and then fixate solely upon assigning blame for the failure rather than looking for the root causes of it.

    Warning letters are a good way for a supervisor to create the illusion that he is "doing something" about a problem he has neither the ability nor the intention to ever solve in the first place.