Fulfillment Partner Operating Instructions
Important: Please review this policy from time to time to make sure you're up-to-date on the latest documentation. It is your responsibility to know and understand the obligations as a Fulfillment Partner (CFP) and to take them seriously. Payments for fulfillment and prep services are subject to adjustment or forfeiture for Performance Violations, and repeated Performance Violations may result in suspension or removal from the Cahoot Network.
1. Cahoot Fulfillment Partners (CFPs) are expected to fulfill orders Monday through Saturday, excluding only the US Postal Service Observed Holidays and Amazon Listed Holidays.
2. All communication must go through Cahoot. Anonymity of all participants will be respected, and network participants will not communicate directly. Notify Cahoot Support immediately if a Seller contacts you directly.
3. Owners and key stakeholders will have direct relationships with Cahoot key stakeholders.
- Maintain current account information including contact information, warehouse address, etc.
- Mobile phone numbers for primary personnel and business owners will be kept on file and used in the event of an emergency.
4. Cahoot provides initial training on how to use the Cahoot software, how to process order fulfillments, process cycle counts, etc., and encourages full team participation. After initial training, CFPs are responsible for training newly hired warehouse staff and refreshing knowledge.
- Paid instructor-led training may be available upon request.
5. CFPs agree to adhere to these Fulfillment Partner Operating Instructions, your Fulfillment Services Agreement and Software Subscription and License Agreements at all times.
6. Never misrepresent yourself or your intentions.
1. CFPs will verify inventory condition and quantity received for every inbound shipment according to your SLA (typically within 2 business days of receipt). Any mismatch between the Qty Received and the Qty Sent will be considered shrinkage if not reported before the inventory is listed for sale.
- CFPs are accountable for Cahoot inventory.
- TIP: Open all cartons! It is not safe to assume they are completely full, especially when received directly from suppliers.
- Cahoot Inventory must be received using the scannable Barcode Labels.
- Not following the receiving SLA may result in throttled inventory allocation or possible removal of existing inventory.
2. Cahoot inventory must be stored in clearly marked unique Bin Locations and treated with as much care as your own merchandise.
3. CFPs will be given advance notice about new inbound inventory including products, approximate quantities, and storage instructions (if applicable).
CFPs must store Cahoot inventory according to any special storage conditions communicated in advance.
Ship Accurately, Ship On Time, Every Time
1. Cahoot provides shipping labels automatically throughout the business day until 2:45 PM local time Monday through Saturday.*
- CFPs must ship all orders strictly using shipping labels provided by Cahoot.
- CFPs must ship all Cahoot orders on the same business day that shipping labels are provided without exception.
- CFPs are responsible for scheduling and managing carrier pickups, including at least 1 national carrier in addition to USPS (e.g. UPS or FedEx).
- TIP: Make sure carrier pickup times are aligned with these expectations or plan to drop off at the local hubs.
2. CFPs must use pre-assigned packaging materials (shipping supplies) and follow any fulfillment instructions provided for every order. Instructions are printed on Packing Slips.
Important: Cahoot tracks packaging supply inventory and automatically sends replenishments when it's running low.
- Inventory must not be bended, folded, squeezed, or otherwise shipped in packaging that is too small to maintain the integrity of merchandise.
Incorrect packaging may result in damaged goods or additional carrier fees because shipping labels were created with the expectation that the pre-assigned packaging would be used.
- Please let Cahoot Support know if an assigned box/mailer is not the appropriate size for the order.
Unless otherwise arranged in advance, Cahoot will provide all shipping supplies (Ex. boxes, bubble mailers, poly mailers, etc.).
- Please communicate shortages of any shipping supplies to Cahoot Support well in advance of stock outs.
- CFPs will provide Cahoot with the list of shipping supplies routinely kept in stock and that may be used to ship less common multi-line/multi-quantity orders. Cahoot will reimburse CFPs for any packaging used to ship Cahoot orders.
3. Packing Slips MUST be included in all Cahoot shipments. The only exception is for inventory that is pre-prepared and "Ready to Ship" as-is without requiring any overpacking. We don't want to advertise what's in the shipment.
4. All orders must be fulfilled using Cahoot Scan Verification. Shipments that did not receive a verification scan will not be counted as payable.
- Shippers will be held accountable for late shipments and fulfillment errors (order defects). Do not expect reminders/notifications.
- TIP! Put processes in place to ensure on-time shipment of all orders. Shipping labels for late shipments will be voided, and the cost of new express shipping labels will be charged to CFPs to ensure on-time delivery (see the Performance Violations and Resolutions Policy).
5. CFPs are responsible for ensuring all Cahoot shipments receive carrier scans before packages leave the warehouse. It is not acceptable for drivers to scan them when they return to the hub. Saturday shipments are no exception.
6. CFPs must scan the Cahoot End of Day SCAN forms every shipping day. Failure to do so is a performance violation. They are provided automatically by 2:45p local time daily and should be scanned AFTER packages are handed to carriers, not when created/printed. Cahoot tracks all timestamps and can see when it's scanned before carrier pickup/origin scans.
7. Please notify Cahoot Support immediately if there are any issues with carrier pickups. It is rare, but CFPs are responsible for dropping off packages at local hubs if drivers don't show. Cahoot will pay for the time, (simply create an invoice in Cahoot), but we need to make sure orders are shipped on time. Please make your Account Manager aware of any issues with carrier pickups.
8. Often, carriers will ship Undeliverable Packages to Cahoot HQ. Cahoot inspects these returned shipments for quality control purposes. We also perform "test buys" for the same purposes; to ensure shipments are being prepared according to these Fulfillment Partner Operating Instructions, and that any required services were included (packing slips, bubble wrap, inserts, etc.).
*Cahoot reserves the right to make changes to this schedule based on shifts in the ecommerce industry, changing consumer expectations, etc.
1. CFPs must maintain an error rate for order defects below the maximum stated in your Fulfillment Partner Agreement. The error rate measures the percentage of services incorrectly performed, which includes, but is not limited to:
- Orders shipped after the “Cahoot Ship By Date”
- Orders shipped without Scan Verification
- Cahoot End of Day SCAN form is skipped
- Wrong item is shipped
- Wrong quantity is shipped
- Late Receiving/Putaway
- Missed SLAs for Inventory Removal, Inventory Prep (ex. barcoding), Inventory Cycle Counts, etc.
2. Failure to maintain below-maximum error rate for 2 consecutive weeks or any 4 weeks in a calendar year may result in adjustment or forfeiture of payments as per your Fulfillment Partner Agreement.
1. Special projects include, but are not limited to, inventory barcoding, returns processing, and pallet prep for freight forwarding.
2. CFPs will be compensated for the successful completion of prep services and special projects according to the Fulfillment Partner Agreement. Such fees will be reported separately from payable fulfillment fees. Please consult your Fulfillment Partner Agreement for more details.
Occasionally, Cahoot may request a removal of inventory. CFPs will be requested to prep the shipment safely for either large parcel or LTL pickup. Cahoot will compensate CFPs for the removal as well as any shipping materials used.
CFPs must submit an invoice after completing Receiving/Putaway, Inventory Removal, and Special Projects. Please submit your invoices promptly to avoid delays in payment processing. Notify your Account Manager if there is anything unusual about the invoice being submitted.
Inventory Counts & Losses
1. Immediately report any issues with Seller inventory. This includes but is not limited to: loss, spoilage, theft, or damage. CFPs will be held accountable for improper storage or improper handling of inventory in their possession that results in spoilage, theft, delays, loss, or damages.
2. CFPs must report any returned shipments (return to sender by carriers) within 24 hours of receipt.
3. CFPs are expected to provide Cycle Counts for a small number of Cahoot SKUs every 2 weeks, and respond to ad hoc requests within 2 business days. An ad hoc request typically occurs when Cahoot discovers a discrepancy between regularly scheduled Cycle Count numbers reported compared to quantities expected. All recounts should be performed AFTER all Cahoot fulfillments are successfully processed on the counting day to ensure accurate Quantity on Hand.
Payments for the time spent on Cycle Counts is automatically added to your monthly statement, no need to create an invoice.
4. Cahoot may, at its own discretion, plan site visits to CFP locations for facility and inventory inspection. Cahoot will provide at least one business day notice prior to the visit.
5. In the rare chance that a CFP has lost or misplaced inventory, they will be held responsible for 100% of the item retail price plus receive a performance violation that lowers their Cahoot Rating.
Conflict of Interest
Fulfillment Partner's are strictly prohibited from adding Cahoot inventory to its product catalog, directly or indirectly selling the same items, or marketing them for sale on any platform (whether online or offline). This restriction applies for the duration that a CFP participates in the program plus the 18 months that follow departure from the program. Please refer to your Fulfillment Partner Agreement for more information.
Cahoot Fulfillment Partners are expected to maintain the following metrics:
Ship On Time
Late Shipment Rate: < 1%
Shipment Cancellation Rate: < 0.5%
Shipment Defect Rate: < 1%
Last Updated: 5/16/2022