Why does FedEx operational delay occur?

Federal Express, better known as FedEx, is a package transportation company, currently one of the main contractors of the United States Government, for its delivery service to the United States Postal Service. This makes it a fairly reliable company in the country.

However, despite being one of the most widely used by the American community, package delivery may experience delays. The tracking system may notify the user of an “operational delay” without explaining what it is and why it happens. We’re here to explain a little about the process and what to expect.

What does Operational delay in FedEx mean?

If you get the message “operational delay” in your tracking guide, your package is delayed due to some logistical problem for FedEx. Typically, this is associated with complications in the shipping transit of the package.

An operational delay in the FedEx package tracking information does not specify the delay problem. Still, it could occur either at the origin of the shipment due to an error, at the routing centers, or at the destination facility of the package.

The operational delay is directly associated with FedEx as a company, not the recipient or the sender. It is an infrastructure inconvenience.

In short, the FedEx operational delay is a problem with its delivery infrastructure, not something the sender or recipient has done wrong. However, it is also possible that the delay is due to an external FedEx event.

What should I do if I get an operational delay in FedEx?

If the operational delay message appears, there is nothing the sender or recipient can do to fix the problem. They must wait for FedEx to resolve the issue with the shipment and get the package back into the normal delivery process.

All you can do is keep an eye on the shipment tracking waybill to see if the company updated the package status and if it is no longer in operational delay status. If you would like more information, you can also call 1.800.463.3339 for customer service.

What are the causes of an operational delay at FedEx?

As mentioned above, the package tracking page will not explain the causes of the operational delay on FedEx. However, some common problems may cause operational delays for FedEx.

When calling FedEx customer service, the agent may not be able to share the delay information and will ask you to be patient and check your package tracking page to find out when the delay will end. However, we will tell you the most common causes of delay.

Weather and other service disruptions

The most common cause of operational delay is due to bad weather. Seasonal weather phenomena such as winter storms, torrential rains, or forest fires are the most common in the country.

These phenomena generate power outages or national emergencies. These interruptions generate delays in both the departure and receipt of packages at post offices.

FedEx, as a company, is concerned about the safety and well-being of its personnel to offer the best service to its customers. Therefore, in the event of a meteorological event, it is very likely that they will call off the work day and send their employees home.

Shipment awaiting

With the increase in demand for shipments, there can be a hold-up on the route waiting for the next ship, plane, or car. This is generated by the congestion of packages at ports or loading points, so you must wait for the next means of transport, generating a delay.

If this is the case, it will be marked as an operational delay until the cargo can make the connection to be sent to the designated post office.

Heavy package volume

This problem began to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, creating heavy package volumes at FedEx. Online shopping became more frequent and with very heavy packages, creating more traffic that FedEx did not previously handle.

Shipment volumes have increased so much that more freight trips must be generated to avoid jeopardizing the transportation and packages on the trip, creating an operational delay across the board.

Lack of staff

FedEx is currently attempting to operate at the same pace as it did before the pandemic. However, they are understaffed. The relationship between the demand for shipments is not directly proportional to the number of workers.

The lack of necessary personnel generates fatigue among workers, representing operational errors that reoccur in the post offices. One example is the lack of operations managers; a delay automatically occurs if they do not supervise the cargo manifest.

Any inconvenience in handling cargo or the supervision of shipments will be reflected as an operational delay in tracking the package.

Delay in Transfer to Local Courier

Once the package has been delivered to the post office determined by the sender, a delay may occur from the local depot to the carrier. In these cases, the tracking waybill will show that it is already at the depot, but there has been an operational delay.

The package has not been delivered to the local delivery truck or shipping locker service. If this is the situation, the recipient must wait for the shipment’s status to be updated and tracked when it arrives at its destination.

This kind of operational delay usually translates to a maximum of one day delay for the arrival of the package, simply because FedEx is waiting for the next truckload to ship more safely.