U Market Services

Frequently Asked Questions

Questions about Central Logistics:

U Market Services is expanding shipment consolidation for the Twin Cities campus to include more suppliers and carriers. This effort is an important part of the Strategic Sourcing Initiative and the campus-wide commitment to operational excellence.

In consolidating deliveries into U Market Services existing routes, traffic on campus will be reduced which will increase safety, reduce emissions, and reduce congestion. This program will also contribute to other efforts to improve security by reducing the number of non-University staff in University buildings and increasing the presence of U Market Services drivers and vehicles. U Market Services will expand its assistance to vendors who have difficulty parking and locating addresses on campus to deliver their packages.

Cost savings is not a primary goal of Central Logistics. The University has invested in Central Logistics, and will add some resources to accommodate greater package volumes. The investment is minimal, as additional deliveries will be rolled into existing routes.

Carriers will benefit by not having to make final mile deliveries. UMS is talking with the carriers about how an appropriate portion of those savings can be passed onto the University.

As the pilot is deemed successful, Central Logistics will be rolled out in small, controlled segments UMS will use this method to minimize the impact of any conversion issues.

There are multiple security and safety initiatives being implemented on campus, each one having a small impact individually with a larger impact when combined together. Central Logistics will contribute by limiting the presence of non-university personnel in secured areas, which will reduce risk and improve control.

Questions about the BDD Central Logistics Pilot:

The purpose of the Central Logistics pilot at BDD is to evaluate and develop effective processes in a controlled area of campus and work out issues before expanding services to larger areas. With a primary goal to support research and teaching, U Market Services will be focused on implementing these changes with as little impact as possible to the departments carrying out this important work. We appreciate the BDD assisting us in this process and look forward to any feedback in improving the rollout of Central Logistics.

The initial communication was through the BDD Operations Council and its representatives. Town hall sessions were held at BDD to present pilot information and answer questions. UMS will also be communicating information through fliers, web site postings, FAQ’s, electronic monitors in BDD buildings, and newsletters.

U Market Services began delivering UPS packages to BDD on July 1, 2014 and FedEx packages on December 1, 2014.

U Market Services will deliver all service levels of UPS and FedEx packages to the BDD.

  • Next day air early AM – delivered by 8:00 a.m.
  • Next day air –delivered by 10:30 a.m.
  • Next day air saver –delivered by 3:00 p.m.
  • All other priority service levels
  • Ground

The Biomedical Discovery District (BDD) includes the following buildings:

  • Lions Research Building (LRB)
  • McGuire Translational Research Facility (MTRF)
  • Cancer & Cardiovascular Research Building (CCRB)
  • Wallin Medical Bioscience Building (WMBB)
  • Center for Magnetic Resonance Research Center (CMRR)

Piloting UPS deliveries in the BDD allows U Market Services experience working in a relatively controlled, defined geographic area. The varied departments within the BDD have a wide range of service requirements, and occupants are known to give immediate and constructive feedback. Finally, the BDD has an existing operations organization that is effective and willing to collaborate with, and provide feedback to UMS.

There are multiple ways to communicate feedback during the pilot:

  • Contact your BDD Operations Council building representative
  • Email U Market Services at ums@umn.edu
  • Call U Market Services Customer Support at 612-624-4878
  • Contact the BDD Dock Manager, Ashley McIntosh (mcin0118), at 612-626-2748
  • Contact the Central Logistics project manager, Chris Ryan (c-ryan), 612-624-6821

UMS will document the data and metrics being used during the study. While some improvements will be difficult to quantify, UMS will be collecting direct and indirect data related to the pilot and will use this information to determine appropriate next steps.

UPS picks up outgoing packages daily at the BDD dock. Packages should be brought to the dock no later than 2:30 p.m. A UPS drop box is located outside of CMRR for smaller shipments. Packages should be brought to the drop box no later than 6 p.m.

FedEx Express picks up at the drop box at 5:15 p.m.

There is a table by the staircase in Lions/MTRF where any ship-ready packages (with outgoing label/dry ice sticker, etc.) can be placed by 2:00 p.m. Since FedEx Ground does not have a scheduled daily pick up, those packages may go out the next business day.

Labs can arrange for U Market Services to pick up packages by 1:30 p.m. by contacting Ashley McIntosh.

Questions about Package Delivery:

U Market Services staff will be delivering the majority of the packages in the regular morning delivery route. Packages contracted as express service or with urgent or unique delivery needs will be delivered by the required time.

Yes. U Market Services will be working diligently to process the packages at the main warehouse and deliver them to BDD where they will be delivered within the normal building route or will expedite the delivery to meet the committed schedule. If a package is not included in the normal morning delivery route, U Market Services will deliver it as soon as it arrives by courier.

U Market Services currently makes a large number of frozen package deliveries and understands the importance of securing these with an appropriate person. Frozen items should not be left without notifying a staff person. Frozen items will either get staged with the regular delivery run or will be sent by courier to the customer location depending on the delivery time requirements. Signatures are requested when these packages are delivered.

If items are large, specially loaded, or include ‘tip’ indicators, they may be delivered directly to the customer location. U Market Services will work with the carrier to ensure efficient and safe delivery of equipment. For some shipments, the vendor has ordered parts and needs them on site for scheduled maintenance or installation. To meet requirements, sensitive and/or expensive equipment should not be removed by anyone but the carrier and the vendor. UMS will work with Purchasing, departments and delivery drivers to ensure that some shipments are delivered directly to the customer location when appropriate. UMS wants to minimize risk and adhere to vendor requirements.

Often when an outside carrier does not find a customer to sign for a package, it is taken back to the distribution facility and delivery is delayed until it can go out on the truck again. UMS makes every effort to obtain signatures, but depending on the location, will leave packages in a designated place. UMS drivers will always notify staff of frozen product left any of the designated locations.

DEA-controlled substances must be delivered by the carrier to the address on the package. During the pilot, these packages will be delivered directly by the carrier.

Questions about Package Tracking:

Yes. The carrier’s tracking system will show the package as delivered to the U Market Services warehouse on Talmage Ave. U Market Services will then scan the package into its own tracking system and the driver will collect a signature when the package is delivered to the final University location. Call U Market Services Customer Support to request tracking information from the warehouse to the customer location.

Yes, the same tracking number used by the carrier will be used in the UMS tracking system.

Customers will be able to see that the carrier dropped off the package at the UMS main warehouse on Talmage. UMS will use the carriers tracking number in its own system so the customer will not have to know two different numbers. There will also be a website implemented later in the project where customers will have access to delivery information by UMS. Until this website is implemented, UMS Customer Support will be able to provide this information for customers.

Questions about Support:

Currently, UMS Customer Support operates 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Customers can still call carriers during non-business hours to track and coordinate non-standard deliveries. Packages will not be staged overnight at the UMS dock — they will all be delivered the day they are received from the carrier. UMS will evaluate the best way to coordinate customer support during the pilot and extended rollout.

You can enter your tracking number into the carrier’s website to determine if your package has been delivered to the U Market Services main warehouse on Talmage Ave. You can also call U Market Services Customer Support, who can assist you in locating your package. U Market Services Customer Support can be reached by phone at 612-624-4878 or by email at ums@umn.edu.

U Market Services will be documenting any noticeable outer damage to the package and delivering it to the customer to determine if the items will be kept or returned. If the contents of your package arrive damaged, contact the vendor to order a replacement. If there are any issues with your claim or questions about the package at time of delivery, please contact U Market Services Customer Support at 612-624-4878 or by email at ums@umn.edu.

The goal is to deliver priority packages to meet or exceed committed delivery times. UMS staff know that it is critical that these packages arrive on time and will plan the routes and staffing accordingly.

There is no difference between UMS signing for packages and the customer signing for packages at the final destination. The vendor or the carrier will still be liable for damages caused either during packaging or during shipment. UMS will cover the replacement of items damaged by its staff, as it does currently.