Broker Check

The Last Mile

August 26, 2021

When is delivered really 'delivered'?

Let's say you order an item online that ships from Amazon's corporate headquarters in Seattle, WA for delivery to our office at 7410 Bluffton Road in Fort Wayne, IN.  That package travels 2,229 miles.  Shipping that package might cost $5 and take 2 days, an incredible bargain for such a long journey.

While you're on your way to our office to pick up your package, you get an email saying that your item is ready for pickup at the new Amazon Fulfillment Center on Flaugh Road 9 miles away from our office.  Would you say Amazon delivered your package? 

Most would say no (myself included).  Aren't we being greedy?  They did take your package 99.59% and 2,220 miles of the way to you!  They would certainly prefer for you to pick up the item at the fulfillment center - between 50-60% (an accepted generalization from my research) of that $5 you paid for shipping is spent on what's called 'The Last Mile', or the distance between their last shipping point and the front door of our building.  

If you do the math, that's $0.01/mile for the first 2,220 miles, and $0.27/mile for the last 9 miles.  Why are the last few miles so expensive? Because the main journey is completed in bulk, by train and long haul tractor trailers loaded and unloaded with machines, which operate in a HIGHLY efficient manner.  The last 9 miles are completed by a smaller truck, driving around winding streets in traffic, with a delivery driver stopping constantly to get out, grab a package, and run it to your front door.  While every package makes the first 2,220 miles of that journey in a fairly standard way, the last 9 miles are unique to each destination.

The same is true in modern finance.  There's no shortage of access to rules-of-thumb, basic financial calculators, and widely available 'for the masses' advice. Financial technology has also never been better; from lower transaction costs to automatic rebalancing portfolios and everything in between, the modern investor has more tools in their toolbox than ever before.  

Good financial advice is a 'last mile' service.  Investment Advisors can leverage today's technology to minimize the amount of time spent on administrative functions allowing them to focus efforts helping clients evaluate, design, and implement highly customized strategies unique to their own set of circumstances.

It's easy to make it the first 2,220 miles. Wise Wealth is here to help take you the last, and most important, 9 miles of your journey.