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Cross-Docking (also called Pool Distribution) is the process of unloading goods from containers or trailers, sorting them and re-loading onto the outbound trailers for delivery. Simply saying, cross-docking means receiving goods at one door and shipping out through the other door immediately without putting them in storage.
In the LTL trucking industry, cross-docking becomes possible by moving cargo from one transport vehicle directly into another, with minimal warehousing. In retail business, cross-docking operations use staging areas where inbound materials are consolidated and stored until the outbound shipment is complete.
Benefits of cross-docking
Reduced inventory
Reduced operating costs
Increased throughput
Shorter transit times
Reduced risk of goods damage
Disadvantages of cross-docking
1.Partners don't have storage-capacities
2.An adequate transport fleet to operate Cross-Docking
3.Need of adequate IT-System
4.Additional freight handling leads to goods damage

Cross docking improves service, giving stores greater efficiencies:
Deliveries are regularly scheduled.
Deliveries are made by skilled drivers who accommodate the receiving requirements of the individual stores.
The cross dock helps easily transfer merchandise between stores or to process vendor returns.
Generally saying, cross dock distribution is a simple idea. It requires a thorough understanding of carrier services and rates, wide-reaching carrier connections; and technology in place to facilitate each step.

Crossdock facility design
Cross-docks in practice are generally designed in an "I" configuration. The goal in using this shape is to maximize the number of inbound and outbound doors that can be added to the facility while keeping the amount of floor space inside the facility to a minimum.

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