The Merton Oil Buying Club…What Next…?

For a long time I have noted that Club orders have been getting larger and delivery periods extended as a result. If we have inclement weather then these problems are exacerbated.
This is not good for many reasons and the main ones are delayed orders/deliveries and the risk of running out; perceived poor Customer Service due to delays; risk of price changes during the extended periods of delivery – the price of oil could be more expensive or cheaper during the delivery period; ties in the Supplier for too long, etc.
Reducing the order volumes is a relatively easy task especially with the online ordering system in that I can simply increase the frequency of oil orders. However, this is a quick, and temporary ‘semi-fix’ to this problem as the Club orders could potentially become more fragmented over a wider area making the proposition less appealing to Suppliers and we may not necessarily get the best deal.
My actual and ultimate aim is to look at devolving the MOBC into geographical areas that still maintain the historical link to Merton and could be something along the lines of say; Merton North, Merton East, Merton West and Merton South.
All of us would be exclusive Club Members of one of those geographical Clubs. The whole proposition will require careful consideration and with the use of the online system, hopefully be the equivalent of ‘shifting of a dataset’ from one part of the database to another new part of the database…seamless integration?!?
More on that later, the benefits will: –
• reduce the overall Club order volumes and delivery times and the associated adverse effects of these;
• allow more local Suppliers to price the Club orders as the deliveries will be within their ‘delivery area’
• allow for a dedicated ‘baby tanker’ Club
• allow for Red Diesel (gas oil, 35 second kerosene, etc.) Club orders
• grow the MOBC in each area without adversely affecting the overall operation of the Club
In achieving the above I firmly believe that we will all benefit from this including the Suppliers as currently not all smaller Suppliers can deliver to the large area that the MOBC currently serves; this has never been my intention to alienate any Supplier.


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