Here at Mercurius IT, we’ve done our homework. It turns out that, heading into 2016, 34% of logistics providers were gaining most of their new business by outbidding or winning contracts from their competitors (eft 2016 Global Logistics Report). That same percentage also admitted that their competitors were their biggest threat to business growth; making this approach a pretty unpredictable one at the best of times.
When asked if they had a solution, 47% said they planned to innovate to create new offerings and solutions in the year ahead…but then most of them admitted to being late majority adopters to cutting-edge technologies and their customers largely agreed that innovation was a weak point. Fast forward a year and we’re about to head into 2017- and, to be honest, not much has changed. After some thought, though, we think we might have a way forward.
Focus on your own business processes
The word innovation can seem quite overwhelming, but breaking it down and focusing inwards on the way you work as a business could be the push you need to get on the path to revolutionary new ideas. A customer’s highest priorities when it comes to their logistics provider are efficiency and customer service. Ultimately, if their order can be processed after a single phone call and they receive automated email alerts when their shipment is on board, they’ll be much happier than if their cargo arrives at the dock and can’t be shipped because the wrong container size has been booked.
So start looking at what you’re great at as a business and what you could improve on. Also, don’t forget to look at it from a customer perspective- yes, you’re providing a service, but great customer service means making the journey from sales to invoicing and beyond as smooth as possible.
Particularly with logistics where there are often legal documents such as Bills of Lading and Letters of Credit involved, it’s key that all the data on a shipment is kept together in one “digital package”. For technologically innovative businesses in 2017, multiple spreadsheets and outdated legacy systems just won’t cut it. You need a fully integrated solution that keeps all the information on the end-to-end process in one place.
In summary, to innovate your business ready for 2017 and stay ahead of the competition, the key is a flawless customer experience from start to finish, supported by a fully-integrated back end system. Luckily for you, we just might have one of those…and the best part is, it adds straight onto your existing ERP without the need for a second software package!