This site is brought to you by the National Mail Order Association (NMOA) www.nmoa.org
This site is meant to provide basic information on order taking and fulfillment and to provide contacts for companies that need a service to warehouse and distribute their products for them.
WHAT IS ORDER FULFILLMENT?
Although fulfillment companies provide services for manufacturers and retailers, most people associate fulfillment companies with the delivery of products for mail order related companies. And it is in this context that this information is geared.
Order fulfillment can be defined as the process of receiving a request for information, an order for a product or service, either by telephone, fax, mail, or the Internet and recording the event by entering it into a database and handling a financial payment for the product or service. Then, shipping the product and/or literature to the buyer to complete the transaction.
Since the bulk of orders are taken by telephone through inbound call centers, order taking and fulfillment go hand in hand, and many people assume that one company handles both processes.
Although some fulfillment companies do have an in-house call center they are usually limited in nature and used mostly for customer service after the sale. Inbound telemarketing (order taking), is best kept separate and handled by specialists who have state of the art equipment, trained telephone operators, and 24 hour/7 day per week coverage.
Fulfillment companies will usually have a call center they like to work with and can make a recommendation. But the client will have the final say on what he wants done, who does what and with whom. A client my want to deal with just one company, so in these cases he would ask the fulfillment company to prepare an estimate/bid for the entire process using the fulfillment centers preferred call center.
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