Fortune 100 Home Improvement Retail & Distribution Company

Case Study Overview

Home Depot RDC 5520 is a high output Rapid Distribution center that supports over 100 Home Depot retail centers, and handles over one billion dollars of merchandise annually. This RDC is also the flagship of HD operations, it is ground zero for any new shipping/flow models within the HD DC network. The client faced continued challenges with its flex labor force, and it has used multiple staffing providers to supply that need. In 2012 we began our relationship with HD RDC 5520 with a request to supplement the main provider, Prologistics.

Home Depot RDC’s Challenges

Client faced several challenges with its flex force:

  • Turnover
  • Cost
  • Training
  • Performance
  • Accuracy
  • Attendance
  • Security
  • Safety
  • KPI metrics

LINK’s Solution

LINK offered a multi-pronged approach solution. The plan required LINK to address multiple issues at once and begin implementation:

  • All recruiting efforts were focused in hiring field staff that had experience in fast pace, warehouse, distribution, or order fulfillment centers. LINK also utilized its Functional Assessment Program to ensure Field Staff were properly qualified for the demands of the job. LINK focused on applicants that were familiar with RF scanners, standing on their feet for 10+ hours a day, and able to sustain work pace for the day through the screening process.
  • LINK created a customized orientation and onboarding process that included pre-assignment overview, site tour, and on-thejob training.
  • LINK provided a supervisor to manage and train all Field Staff. The supervisor acted as a liaison between HD leaders and LINK Field Staff to ensure compliance, safety, communication, and KPI are met on a daily basis. The supervisor also communicates daily with LINK Branch Managers and Home Depot’s OM/AGM’s/GM. LINK’s supervisor also addressed any and all performance attendance, safety and training issues on site. This enabled LINK to proactively manage expectations at Home Depot.
  • LINK’s Major Accounts Operations Manager met with the HD Leadership team during peak seasons on a weekly basis to address expectations, including performance, training, safety, and any other topics relating to on-site management.
  • LINK offered a continued presence on all shifts K1, K2, and K3 to support Home Depot. K3 offered the biggest challenge as it is a 3-day weekend shift. Home Depot struggled to sustain internal staff for this shift. LINK continually exceeded expectations on K3 with staffing requirements. LINK was able to achieve this through proper screening, completion bonuses, awards, and recognitions.
  • Home Depot RDC 5520 requires that all non-HD contractors be identified prior to entering the facility. LINK accommodated this by having all Field Staff use lime green safety vets and were issued ID badges identifying them as LINK employees.
  • LINK also understood from the early stages that the success of this operation hinges on having the right leadership on-site. LINK has been able to provide exceptional leadership and has continually worked with Home Depot to improve on performance and expectations while keeping their cost fixed.

Results of LINK’s Partnership With Home Depot Rapid Distribution Center

The solution that LINK offered has lowered turnover, increased performance, lowered training cost, and has removed the burden of supervising temporary labor by HD supervisors. This allowed them to focus on their core activities while LINK managed the performance expectations of its own Field Staff in par with Home Depot KPI metrics.

Through this process LINK has transformed the relationship from a vendor to a trusted partner. Home Depot calls upon LINK to support them on different projects. The relationship between LINK and Home Depot will only continue to grow and our experience will make a stronger partner within the HD RDC/SDC network.