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The only similarity between Brown and Home Delivery are the four tires. The contracted drivers used by FedEx simply don't have the experience needed, resulting in addresses not found, late deliveries, and mis-delivered packages.
Package damage is pretty much awash; both carriers beat-up their cargo to the same extent.
My observations are 12 months old, so please correct me if they've improved in 2007.
You are correct its the drivers. They are not company/union drivers but contract drivers who are paid per piece. So they dont care if they can find all the addresses in a days work. If they cant find an address easily, or its way out of the way, it will stay on the truck for another day. UPS (and Fed Ex Express) will pay overtime and the dirvers are more than happy to go out of their way to get everything delivered.
Unlike UPS union drivers FedEx home delivery drivers are really in business for themselves. They buy the truck all FedEx does is supply them with packages for delivery. Lost packages are paid for out of their pocket so our lost packages are really low. They only get paid for packages delivered.
I worked for FedEx ground loading trucks and for home deliver as well you are incorrect on them not caring if a package gets delivered or not.
Here is the "Correct" account of a home delivery. A driver has to maintain a certian % of on time delivery to make money. I think the % is 99% of the packages on the trucks have to be delivered on time and correct address for them to make the "bonus". It is up to the FedEx driver to determine if the home is safe to leave the package if they do and it is stolen "they are responsible" for the lost pacckage.
I did start out with UPS but switched due to to many problems and to many passing the buck junk.
To be fair, I'm sure these problems are not the norm... but ever since I've been here I haven't had a single good UPS delivery.
We ship with both FedEx and UPS.
We find FedEx to be a better deal overall. The discounts we get for Ground, Home Delivery, Express and International are considerably better than the UPS discounts.
As others have posted, they are basically equal other than FedEx tends to respond better.
UPS has a high initial delivery rate (98.5%) vs Fedex Ground (97.7%) When there is a problem with the delivery UPS has a 20% fix rate while FedEx has a 90% fix rate.
Not sure of your volume, but with us FedEx gives us a dedicated team plus our sales rep. There is no comparison on service, FedEx wins hands down.
UPS is a more advanced with better tools and API's FedEx is a little behind on this one.
All damages have been promptly reimbursed.
They offer us free equipment to use and truly go out of their way to see that our business succeeds.
That was not something that really thrilled us, but what stopped the possible switch dead in it's tracks was that because we don't always have overnight or second day shipment daily, they insisted that rather than a daily pickup account for express, we would have a pickup on demand account. Thus, if we had express packages, we'd have to call for a pickup.
Has anyone else had trouble with this? Has Fedex gone to a single pickup for all your packages shipping via Fedex regardless of whether it is ground, 2nd day or overnight?
You will only see savings on UPS if the package exceeds 7 lbs.
only requires destination and weight, not city and package dimensions
You do realize that, as of about six months ago, USPS now has dimensional weight as well?
To answer the original question you're really not going to see a big discount on ground service with any carrier unless you are doing seriously big business (think amazon, buy.com, overstock, newegg, etc). Once we passed about $4000 in weekly UPS shipments, our Ground service discount jumped up a fair amount but has flattened since then. Air service, however, is much easier to negotiate and the savings can be substantial. At this point, we're only paying slightly more for 2nd Day Air packages than Ground. If you are doing significant volume, you should have a dedicated UPS rep and should meet with him/her several times per year and renegotiate your rates yearly. We always schedule our rate negotiations for October - right before the holiday time.
Does anyone else have this kind of agreement?