IT professionals seem to need a little knowledge about everything. This post is about receiving large or heavy items (freight) rather than smaller packages delivered by parcel carriers. Even small items like UPS units that exceed 100 pounds are often shipped on a pallet as freight. Pre-assembled four-post racks are also a common IT item to receive by freight.
ONE IMPORTANT NOTE, it is the CUSTOMER RESPONSIBILITY TO UNLOAD THE PRODUCT FROM THE TRUCK. If you don’t have a loading dock, you should request lift gate service to receive the product at ground level. If you want the product unloaded from the truck for you, make arrangements with the shipper for inside delivery service. All of the unloading services come with additional charges from the freight service provider. Some freight providers may also offer the option to hold your pallets or crates at a freight terminal and pick them up yourself.
When ordering, try to specify instructions to call ahead to schedule delivery so that you (or a receiving team) can be available to meet the truck at the dock. If you have not pre-arranged for inside delivery, you should have a dock plate and pallet truck on hand to unload your pallet(s) from the trailer. If your facility provides a receiving service, these details should be taken care of by the dock receiving team. Once the pallet is received, you may need a basic tool set to unbolt / remove your items from the shipping pallet or crate. Make sure to use extreme care and require a safe number of people for any lifting or moving of large or heavy items received.
Always inspect received items for damage and make arrangements as soon as possible for replacement or reimbursement if you receive defective or damaged items. MAKE A NOTE OF ANY PACKAGE DAMAGE on the shipment receipt before signing AND TAKE PICTURES as evidence in case you need to make a claim about shipping damage.
Dock plates and pallet trucks are available from most industrial suppliers, one popular manufacturer is Uline.
This quick note is not enough detail to properly introduce freight receiving. I recommend that you read other articles like What you need to know about freight shipping (Greg Smith Equipment).