We follow up our recent articles on air freight modernization and problems facing the various players in the industry in keeping abreast of the times and ensuring that customers really
get value for money.
In this issue, we take a short look at the quality aspect as seen by the shippers.
Too many mistakes happening “on the floor”
Adequate training has become something that freight forwarders, airlines and airport handlers are having to take a closer look at these days.
This especially applies to the handling of temperature sensitive and hi-value shipments which are fast becoming the normal trend.
Another issue is ensuring that shipments are handled properly on the warehouse floor, especially as far as labeling is concerned.
There are reports in the past twelve months that various hi-value temperature sensitive pharma shipments have ended up at wrong destinations due to faulty paperwork and labeling.
Faulty pallet or container build up, although it should never happen, is a nightmare for companies who entrust hi-value, perishables and pharma cargo to airlines.
The mistakes cost shippers a fortune and often end up with cargo having to be destroyed.
The result here is that especially pharma shippers switch back to ocean vessels, claiming that although it takes longer, it’s safer!
Well-trained staff can react faster
Each link in the supply chain should be in the position to cooperate with another so that airfreight handling can get a clean bill of health in the shipper’s eyes.
TIACA’s Shippers Advisory Council (SAC) whose members include various representatives from international shippers, has picked up on this by urging members of the airfreight industry to take a much closer look at how best to introduce and understand enhanced technology in order to make cargo handling easier and safer all round.
Do players understand what a supply chain is?
It’s however, the old story as far as getting a fully functional supply chain.
Getting the individual players to recognise the importance of a watertight supply chain is still a harrowing task.
The debate on this particular issue is being forced by TIACA and one can only hope that future conferences will put this on top of their agendas in a form that most participants can and will understand.
The airfreight industry has come a long way since its inception many decades ago.
What’s wrong is that we are still working with procedures that were put together for the carriage of cargo as a by-product in the bellies of a B707 or DC8 aircraft.
Not enough has changed with regards to quality handling and there is a long way to go - but time is running out.
John Mc Donagh