Let’s face it – logistics companies are among the ones experiencing the worst of the COVID-19 whip. With many countries closing borders, and others placed on lockdowns, movement of cargo is limited.
However, the pandemic has caused a rise in the demand for medical equipment worldwide. Logistics companies, especially those dealing with medical deliveries, are, therefore, tasked with going the extra mile to ensure business as usual. While at it, these companies are careful not to compromise customer satisfaction.
The new wake of COVID-19 has seen come companies adopt the just-in-time system to ensure continuity with minimal losses. Take a look at other steps logistics companies are using to survive the pandemic.
1. Crisis Management Plan
Many logistics companies develop emergency plans way before crises, just in case they happen. However, the current pandemic was highly unpredictable. But still, logistics companies work around their plans to counter interruptions in the supply chain.
Local, regional, and expedited delivery services require large teams of drivers, who are often independent contractors. Since they have many touchpoints with people and go to numerous locations during a day, there is a clear risk to their health and safety during a viral outbreak. Many may not wish to take the risk at all, leaving logistics providers with a dilemma.
Reduction in passenger flights has posed a significant challenge, causing such things as price hikes and difficulty in moving some cargo. Its time for these companies to activate their response plans to counter these situations.
2. Communication –The Mastermind Tool
A sound supply chain depends on different players to work as efficiently as possible. For a smooth run, the customer, manufacturers, distributors, et cetera all have to play their parts well.
This calls for the cooperation between all levels of supply chain calls for a sound flow of communication. This way, companies can quickly identify where their pain points are – defining which parts of the supply chain have weakest links to react promptly.
Such is critical when moving such medical supplies as protective equipment and vaccines. Maintaining excellent communication between the companies and customers helps them respond effectively to their needs.
The current pandemic has seen tech giants working round the clock to introduce and improve tech tools that make work easier in various sectors. Such devices have continued to enable distance learning, virtual meetings, and remote working.
Logistics companies are also adopting these measures to ensure safety, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness, even in these critical times. For instance, some companies have been delivering medical supplies such as PPEs and coronavirus test samples using drones, which deliver to up to 85km away in 30 minutes.
An estimate of 2 Billion people doesn’t have access to critical medical supplies. Some of these people live in remote areas where accessibility is close to impossible. Embracing the latest technology has enabled supplies to these locations.
The adoption of such technological solutions has helped drive automation. With such tools as AI and cloud solutions, customer experience has dramatically improved.
With the pandemic comes endless interruptions to the supply chain. Such is costly, and this will be felt by the customer directly.
Restrictions in the number of cargo flights entering and leaving countries cause a financial strain on logistic companies and severe shortage to the ultimate customers. To curb this, logistics companies need to find ways to recoup their losses without necessarily affecting the standard costing.
Pre-negotiating rates, for instance, is a method delivery companies can use to ensure its operations are not affected during crises.
Wrapping It Up
Logistics companies have received a hard blow, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. But even as this happens, there’s a need to ensure continuity of operations despite all-around uncertainties. The above strategies can help these companies to survive the new normal.