Worldwide, businesses were re-examining the status quo of their industry survival in the COVID times. For the logistics arena, the resuscitation was through supply chain optimization, investment in new-age tech, and geographical diversification. However, more mind-boggling changes and enduring traces are in the making. For starters, it’s important to reckon that the estimated shipment volume for 2026 now seems to be plausible by 2023. The COVID timeline, on the one hand, influenced customers to resort to their buying behaviours online. On the other, the COVID afterlife is a heavy lift for logistics companies snared in deciphering the new customer equation by stretching their resources to the maximum. It was an eye-opener for businesses to invest in new concepts, digital enablers that could promise them a shorter yet broader runway for growth. Companies had a new white space to innovate and win an edge over other players in the battle of securing higher customer mindshare.
Here’s a closer look at how COVID rejigged the priorities of MENA’s logistics with newer checkboxes for the region’s players:
Time to reemphasize the most promising cliche: Customer is King With ecommerce activity skyrocketing in the wake of COVID, online appetite increased three- to- four-fold. The first piece of advice could be to keep up with the demand and handle shipments for delivery against all the odds.
However, catering to volume is half the ballgame. For one thing, COVID has highlighted the importance of building a more consumer-facing and goal-driven supply network. Research reveals that over 80% of UAE and KSA customers have moved to online buying. It dialled up the weight on businesses for meeting service levels (on-time delivery performance, customer satisfaction) with exuberance.
To achieve this, investing in prediction, identification, and monitoring of all the events in a logistics journey is a prerequisite to assess and shape customer value proposition. This sets the ideal stage for advanced technologies like data science, artificial intelligence, or machine learning to bolster the end-to-end supply link. Just like our TruKKer platform that foresees truckload demands and pre-empts by assigning the most efficient transport. Our prediction capability sets the base of routing any load request to a freeloader, while our allocation algorithm clubs multiple deliveries into a single booking in real-time. Not only smooth on-time deliveries for seamless customer experience, but this also helps us increase productivity by up to 20%.
Tech uprise is the best fix
Only technology can single-handedly empower MENA’s businesses to heed their customers demand proactively while ensuring digital enablement. Prompt usage of technology is poised to give companies a strong position. Through the latest solutions, they can expect huge yields in increasing margins along with productivity. All in all, the technology uproar will accelerate the already underway supply chain transformation.
On a closer inspection of the Middle East, there is a strong undercurrent of a tech-led revolution as many emirate countries want to do away with their sole dependence on oil. In the same light, the Saudi Vision 2030 is a great proponent of digitization and is poised to drive economic and social growth. The natural upshots will be increased funding for tech-driven projects and spurring of hyper-local or localized supply networks with end-to-end digitization.
TruKKer is MENA’s largest digital freight network and was an early cognizant of digital power and its contribution to creating an innately robust inland connectivity. Our platform, in the background, constantly tracks all interactions and feeds a dynamic data lake built upon years of historical shipping data. The proprietary data lake allows us to improve last-mile deliveries by foretelling transit times for each customer with pinpoint accuracy. This repository of data hosts big data infrastructure that runs advanced data analytics and AI-enabled algorithms to generate accurate decisions.
Extraordinary support from leadership
Change is imminent but implementing is difficult. Unwithering support from the leadership and at the management level will be critical to ensure this paradigm shift. It might involve allocation of funds for improving technology and talent or develop more consumer-centric offerings.
From a business standpoint, companies ought to run several anecdotal and “what if” scenarios to perform a reality check on their resilience stance. Probably, ran on a digital twin – a digital model of a company’s operation, this trial-and-error approach will increase a company’s readiness for future-proofing. This is where the leadership team’s years of domain expertise and hands-on experience come in and go a long way to determine the process, design efficiency of those models. The more realistic the exceptions are in the scenario, the more tangible the outcomes. As the journey to new recovery starts, companies need to start making significant investments in online endeavours, people, and resources to stand up to demands.