The last few years have been hectic for businesses in the UK. With Brexit causing a lot of commotion and uncertainty for businesses in almost every industry of the UK, especially those in the logistics industry.
With the date pushed back again to 31st January 2020, organisations are still left in the dark without a clear-cut answer about everything that’s going to change and how exactly to adapt and change to remain successful throughout it all. In this blog post, we will be looking at 5 challenges we’ve noticed in the Third-Party Logistics (3PL) industry during the uncertain times of Brexit.
1. Lack of reporting & analytics
When you’ve got multiple orders of multiple products from multiple vendors going out to multiple end-customers, it can get very confusing when tracking and understanding your business performance. As the whole world essentially runs on data nowadays, a lack of reporting & analytics tools for your 3PL business can be a big disadvantage—not just for you as you’re unable to understand your business performance, but also for your customers. Customers want to understand important metrics such as delivery times, but this is impossible if you don’t have an analytics/reporting system in place. For you as a business you also want to be observing any bottlenecks or inconsistencies in performance, so you can make data-backed decisions to improve your overall business performance.
Maybe looking into a powerful reporting system that accurately links your WMS & other back end systems is a good idea?
2. Rising customer expectations
Retaining your customers and keeping all their requirements met is essential for 3PL, but with custom expectations continually rising it can be difficult for businesses to keep up and provide the service that is expected. Costs and delivery times are trying to be driven down by your customers as well as a necessity for reliability in your operation, especially with the problems of Brexit looming over. Customers want visibility into your processes and an easy way to understand what’s going on and contact you. Using old technology and legacy systems can be a hindrance to your customer service as you may not be able to provide the information that customers need, so it’s important to be using appropriate technology that can ensure your customer service is first-rate.
3. Regulations & Customs
The changes to regulations and customs are probably one of the biggest challenges being faced by the 3PL industry in recent times, thanks to Brexit. As there are still no conclusive answers for what’s going to happen once/if we leave on the 31st January—it’s very difficult to judge what’s going to have to change for business in 3PL and importing/exporting from the UK to the EU. What we do know however is that things are going to change, so it’s important to understand before whether the systems you currently run your business with can evolve and adjust positively to the changes—or will investments into newer technology be necessary to keep your operations running smoothly and business remain successful.
4. Supply Chain Management
Having a well-functioning supply chain is essential for the 3PL industry, with collaborating being necessary between customers, vendors, shippers and others you want there to be visibility throughout it all. Without it, the supply chain can get convoluted and this is when can be mistakes made, having an adverse effect on the smooth running of it. Modern, intelligent back-end systems can be utilised to ensure your supply chain maintains visibility and enables collaboration throughout it all.
5. Enhancing productivity
Time is money and having a workforce than can’t be productive means money is being wasted. With Brexit getting in the way of everything, processes should be streamlined to ensure you can keep up with any changes and have your workforce working at 100%. Using legacy systems with long, multi-step processes that can easily be automated will be hindering your employee’s productivity. To remain successful during these challenging times, your workforce need suitable, intelligent technology that works efficiently and allows them to be productive in the busy, demanding industry of Third-Party logistics
The aim of this blog post was to bring awareness to businesses working in the third-party logistics industry about some pain points you may be facing, but possibly unaware of. If you can relate to any of these points mentioned earlier in the post, please feel free to contact us using the link or details listed below for a no-obligation chat about your business and how Mercurius IT can help to eliminate any troubles you may be having.
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