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Why It’s Time for Logistics to Embrace Digital Transformation

December 2, 2020 Leo Expert advice

Like many industries, the logistics industry once depended on pen and paper. While technology has advanced dramatically in recent years, many logistics firms continue to rely on tried-and-tested processes. It’s the classic “if it ain’t broke, why fix it?” approach.

As the industry’s roots go back thousands of years (goods have always needed transporting), this isn’t too surprising. However, in a world that’s increasingly dependent on digital transformation, the risks of employing traditional methods far outweigh the rewards.

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The challenges facing logistics companies

Beyond the challenges of Brexit and Covid-19, haulage and logistics companies have the daily task of coordinating the movement of multiple consignments, whether across the UK or worldwide. And with more transactions taking place online than ever before, watertight processes and infrastructure are essential to ensure goods consistently arrive on time.

From vessel tracking and workforce planning to warehouse management and customs clearance, innumerable activities need to work in tandem. To remain competitive, logistics companies have little choice but to explore digital solutions for the above, as well as internal processes such as payroll, accounting and HR.

This isn’t to mention the move towards remote working, a trend that has affected companies in all industries. While logistics firms have long been used to managing staff in multiple locations, many have now had to find virtual alternatives to face-to-face meetings, both with customers and colleagues.

What are the barriers to digital transformation?

Despite the benefits of digital, a fear of change can hold logistics companies back. To a large extent, the changes brought about by Covid-19 have been a matter of necessity rather than choice. From our own experience, we see an industry where many businesses are not quite ready to take that leap and fully embrace technology.

Cost is undoubtedly one of the biggest barriers for companies. The sense of investing in something that they can’t physically “see” or hold can seem daunting. A lack of digital education also plays its part; it can be a steep learning curve for people who have only ever known the “old ways”. They struggle to see how they could use technology proficiently, or find the time to train themselves, so they revert to what has always worked. 

However, whilst technology can be a big investment, the long-term benefits far outweigh the initial cost. In many cases, the biggest saving is time. Digitising processes that would otherwise take hours (e.g. invoicing) or incorporating real-time vehicle tracking to minimise phone calls can deliver greater efficiency and free up time to focus on business-critical activities such as sales, marketing or product development.

Working with an IT and telecoms consultant can allay any fears around technical knowledge, training or expertise. You don’t need to know which technology you need. As long as you understand the problems facing your business, they’ll be able to identify and implement the solutions that will solve them, while providing training and ongoing support.

At Comms Unite, we offer a fully-managed IT and telecoms service to companies operating in the logistics sector. With over 15 years’ experience in logistics and haulage, we understand the challenges and opportunities in the sector, and how digital transformation can help businesses thrive in an increasingly competitive market.

As your IT and telecoms partner, we’ll put the needs of your business first. This will determine whether you require a whole new digital infrastructure or a simple upgrade to your existing systems. Our established relationships with telecoms suppliers and software houses enable us to secure the best deal for customers, while continuing to manage those relationships on their behalf.

We know how quickly things can change in haulage. That’s why all of our solutions are designed to future-proof businesses, saving them additional time and cost down the line. On hand 24/7 to support with any troubleshooting, technical queries or upgrades, you’ll be able to grow your business, safe in the knowledge that your IT & telecoms are in expert hands.

To find out how we can help your haulage or logistics company, please don’t hesitate to get in touch today. No matter the problem, you can trust us to find a solution. 

October 19, 2020 By Nick
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