The Warehouse & Logistics News Annual 2021 is now available, showcasing the leading companies and organisations driving the industry forward!
You can read the interview below and online at page 50!
- What products or services does your company offer?
- Logistics Network Strategy & Cost to Serve Modelling
- Warehouse Operational Design / Improvement
- Transport Modelling & Route to Market Strategy
- 3PL Outsourcing / Tender Management
- Inventory Optimisation & Reviews
- Warehouse Automation Design & Procurement
- International Trade Advisory (Customs, VAT etc.)
- Which industries do your customers operate in?
All sectors that have physical distribution – Retail, FMCG food and non-food, fashion, construction materials, technology and more. In general, we have at least two or three blue-chip clients in any given sector.
- Do you have any examples of a project you have recently completed?
We recently completed a warehouse improvement project where we recommended changes to layout, processes and systems that would simplify the operation and reduce labour requirements by over 15%.
We have also just finished a project where we created web and phone apps to help a client keep track of their production and distribution activities.
Other recent examples include a retail network strategy, multiple 3PL tenders in the UK and Europe, a bakery extension in Cyprus and various new warehouse design projects.
- How did the Covid-19 outbreak and subsequent lockdown affect your business?
As any other business, we had to think fast to be able to continue operating at full pace. A couple of projects were placed on hold by clients. We moved to a higher degree of remote working and won new business with clients such as Carpetright, Tor Coatings, Safeguard Armour and Simbodies, all of which we are very pleased to be working with.
- Did Covid-19 have a negative impact or did the increase in online shopping actually result in a boost to your business?
Clients experiencing a shift in route to market mix did initiate projects with us to help them address this change in their warehousing operations.
- Is your business back to normal following the Covid-19 outbreak?
We are trading at normal levels but there is much less travel going on. We’re still winning international projects but now we’re mostly delivering them remotely as it’s hard to travel to the client sites without requiring quarantine.
- Going forward, will the industry be permanently changed as a result of Covid-19 or will it return to how it was pre-Covid?
We think that pre-existing trends have been accelerated, for example changes to shopping habits. They won’t just snap back to a pre-Covid situation. An increase in remote working and corresponding reduction in business travel are also here to stay.
- What products or services will you be introducing in the next year?
We’re trying to raise awareness of our offer to potential international customers and have introduced a Dutch language website. We may introduce other language websites. We’ve just recruited a new Senior Consultant with great expertise in warehouse automation, so although not a new service as such, it’s likely to become more of a focus.
- In what areas are you making technological advances?
We are always improving our ways of working, making delivery of projects more efficient and trying to innovate on behalf of our clients. A great example from this year would be the grocery home delivery optimisation model that we developed for one of the supermarkets; a bespoke model helping them to increase their number of delivery slots and target capacity at the right areas to maximise sales.
- What training do you provide for your staff?
Mostly ‘on the job’ training and knowledge sharing – consultants need such a mix of skills – analytical and technical, but also an understanding of operations management, people skills, ability to spot and manage risks. There is no substitute for experience, but we also need to keep up to date with the technology side.
- Are you helping customers boost the level of automation in their business?
Yes, we are involved in warehouse automation projects from initial concept design through business case, vendor selection, detailed engineering and implementation management.
- Do you help customers maximise the use of their existing warehouse space?
Yes – this is about so much more than just fitting pallets into space. It’s about the right mix of areas to achieve throughput capacity and fitting storage media to the profile of stock, depending on how much selectivity is required.
- What industries do you believe offer your business the most potential over the next year?
Grocery Home Delivery has expanded a lot in the last year and I believe we have some strong insight into how this can be done most effectively, so I hope we might connect with some more of the retailers in this space. Another area would be brand owners who are starting to scale up Direct to Consumer offers – this is quite different to their usual logistics operations and we can help them to get hit.
- How future proof is your business?
We are working hard all the time to build depth in the team and ensure we are up to date with industry developments, so hopefully SCCG will endure.
- Will you be exhibiting at any major trade shows over the next year?
Yes, next year we’ll be exhibiting at IMHX 2021 in September. We are also enthusiastic sponsors of Cold Chain Federation so, depending on how things play out with Covid-19 restrictions, we expect to be involved in their events.
- How would you sum up your company in three words?
Supply Chain Experts