Digital is the New Normal: Freight Forwarders & Customs during COVID 19 & Beyond
Without a doubt, the outbreak of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and efforts to contain the spread of the virus through travel restrictions, social distancing and working from home, has disrupted the way we live and do business. The coronavirus pandemic has forced most businesses and organizations to work remotely and freight forwarders are no exception.
There is no denying of the fact that the freight forwarders and customs brokers have evolved over the years and adapted many changes including technology; the early adaptors have always been the gainers. But off course this panadamic has shown that cloud-based freight management software is something that has become the need of the hour to sustain in the business. But still many are raising questions if Cloud Solutions can help the freight Forwarders to manage their business from home?
The answer is a big YES
So, let us try to understand how?
Logistics and Freight Forwarding Industry is considered to be the lifeline of the global supply chain for connecting various markets, suppliers and customers thus it is crucial for the industry not to stop working. The businesses are forced to adapt to work from home to manage their logistics & freight operations, the only possible way to fulfill this is by implementing the right technology to run the business easily and efficiently.
Investing in technology is always a long-term commitment that involves huge investment and the freight forwarders must consider various factors while implanting technology otherwise, it may certainly backfire if it’s not in sync with the requirement of the organization. The logistics companies are just acquiring any cloud-based or web-based software to fulfill their current needs like filing documentation, billing and few others without forseeing their future business requirements once the emergency situation passes.
Let us understand the factors that freight forwarders should consider before implementing any cloud based freight forwarding management or customs management software.
Managing Employees - For any organization its workforce is its core asset, the employees in the logistics industry is very unique such as documentation staff, field staff, customs filing staff, data entry personnel, support and implementation. To enable all of them to work remotely is a tremendous task, the only solution is a single system where every employee can follow the communication strategy of maker/ checker / approver concept in operations to seamlessly flow of data while working from home. The auto alerts from the software shall notify the staff on their daily responsibilities and duties, while the management can have complete visibility on the progress of business through system generated reports to monitor day to day productivity.
Driving customers Experience – For any business gaining trust of their customers is of utmost importance and customer experience is going to be largely driven by technology. The right logistics technology can facilitate high level of collaboration and coordination within the organisation and across stakeholder with comprehensive customer service capabilities digitally. The modern single software enables logistics and freight to share information across departments from sales, operations, accounting & finance to customer service. Quick response, informed decision making and efficient collaboration is made possible using the logistics software. Alerts and Notifications received on important milestones can make it easier for field personnel and management to access and update information. Online access to reports and information in real time can help managers and management in informed decision making on their shipments.
Managing operation and finance – The situation has put businesses under tremendous financial pressure and all the predictions, expectations are becoming challenging day by day to keep the logistics business wheel rotating. The way to safeguard the business is by enabling with modern digital systems which can provide ample information, accuracy and real-time visibility to operate from anywhere. The freight software ensures that a single dashboard can manage receivables, payable, documentation, managing, and tracking revenue flows/ cash-flow like payment, outstanding with a real-time interface with operations. Also, the cloud software enables freight forwarders and customs to create invoices from operations, tracking freight rates, quotation, consolidation, billing, and actual expenses with auto calculation of applicable tax tracking freight rates, quotation, consolidation, billing.
Customer support and service – The only way you consider successful is when your customers are happy and satisfied, and as digital freight forwarderit is important to ensure continuous uninterrupted support to sail them through this difficult time. Now it become critical to handle the customers query, update them with real-time information and provide them with upgrade to not only keep them afloat, but also give them leverage over their competitors. The logistics operators serving into any domain, must be technologically empowered to give business insights on finances, operations and update the customers like simply updating them on shipments through mobile or email, this is only possible when there is seamless flow of information on a single system.
Logi-Sys is one such Single integrated cloud platform for Logistics & Freight Forwarders to manage the entire operations of a freight forwarder, Import & Export / Air & Sea online from anywhere, anytime with any device.The system is designed with the latest technology to ensure simplified operations & enhanced productivity for the Logistics & Freight Forwarding Industry by helping them to overcome their Business Challenges and manage their Growth. During the COVID 19, lockdown period understanding the challenges of the work from home, the freight forwarding software has introduced features like Enhanced Workflow engine, Internal Messaging System, Digital, or E-Signature on Invoices, Employee Visibility & Monitoring, Digital Approval Mechanism and many more.
Thus, the freight forwarders should consider the various factors as mentioned before investing in any new technology that will enable them not only to work from home during this crisis period but also have long-term usability to fulfill the long-term business requirements since digital is going to be the the new normal.
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