The world of freight movement has increasingly become more interconnected, with transportation mediums expanding from ocean to road and rail and, more recently, the rising demand for air freight. With disruptions and bottlenecks creating challenges around availability, capacity and on-time delivery, more and more customers are changing their strategy from just-in-time to just-in-case. They are also rapidly more open to the idea of incorporating the use of integrated logistics solutions to get their products delivered in a timely and economical fashion.
The transformation of supply chains has led to a change in the expectations of customers from their logistics partners. Resultingly, logistics providers and agencies have had to expand their resources and services to offer integrated solutions that can cater to this demand.
According to Kim Winter, Founder & Group Managing Director of Logistics Executive Group, the term ‘supply chain’ sometimes seems a bit more linear, and there is a shift to now talking about a supply web.
Current supply chain needs
With more product options available to end consumers, there is an uptick in demand that is driving businesses to seek more refined and reliable logistics operations that can support a seamless and efficient supply chain, thereby driving the needs of businesses for more refined and reliable logistics operations that can support a seamless and efficient supply chain. The expectations of BCOs, manufacturers, cargo owners, etc, have evolved to now needing a partner that can understand their end-to-end supply chain requirements across storage and transportation. Thus, logistics providers need to ensure they have enough assets to cater to this demand from businesses.
Advantages of air freight
- Avoid capacity blockages and delays at ports
- Greater speed than other mediums
- Higher levels of security
- Assured quality due to greater compliance measures
Impact of digitisation
Digitisation is existential right across the entire environment of freight, logistics and supply chain, and has created a whole new ethos in the last 5-10 years. The explosion in demand over the last two years has led to many capacity challenges for both ocean and air freight. Digitisation is enabling rapid movement, compliance, security and visibility across the supply chain and aiding the timely, efficient and economic management of products and cargo from end to end.
Key focus areas of logistics providers
- Shift in mindset to wanting to provide end-to-end logistics solutions throughout the supply chain
- More focus on building products and services as per the needs of the customer
- Main aim is to make the customer journey
- More economic
- Controlled by one source to reduce coordination points
- Secure and hassle-free with digitisation and elimination of paperwork
- Seamless with integrated delivery all the way through the supply chain down to the last mile