The unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 pandemic along with the need for social distancing for prevention and containment has also significantly affected business operations and customers’ priorities. COVID-19 care and safety, contactless deliveries to the extent possible, and implementation of all necessary precautions has come to the forefront.
For most businesses across the world, the COVID-19 outbreak has thrown a spanner in the works. The ensuing lockdowns and restrictions on the inflow of good and people in a number of countries have disrupted business supply chains and impacted global trade, LCL, FCL, ocean freight, air freight and other logistics services
Being part of the essential services, the logistics industry in India has continued to be operational throughout the crisis. So when it comes to an industry-leading logistics company like Allcargo Logistics, at Container Freight Stations, Inland Container Depots (ICD), project logistics sites and facilities, as well as offices, numerous safety and precautionary measures have already been in place and continue to be actioned. In addition, with consumer-facing industry sectors like e-commerce now resorting to changing their packaging and delivery processes to make them safer, the warehousing sector – that plays a key role in managing operations at the back end - has also had to step up and ensure the same levels of COVID-19 care and safety.
Dedicated COVID-19 Task Force
What is of essential importance during a crisis like this is taking focused, informed decisions, having a holistic perspective while ensuring safety and security at all levels - individuals, physical and tangible assets, as well as systems and processes.
At Allcargo, a central COVID-19 Task Force convenes regularly to discuss and deliberate on key issues and take decisions in the interest of the organisation and its employees. The Task Force, led by a COVID-19 General, comprises of representatives of various departments like HR, Administration, Corporate Social Responsibility, and regional heads, all of who collaborate to arrive at the most effective solutions.
After all, a prerequisite to offering customers with seamless logistics services is making sure employees are aware, healthy and well-equipped to take care of all COVID-19 related safety measures.
Just like the impact and spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has not been uniform throughout, even COVID-19 relief measures cannot have a one-size-fits-all approach. For a global organisation like Allcargo that operates through multiple sites and offices in India along with a network of over 300 offices in more than 160 countries, it is vital that decisions are decentralized.
In accordance and with guidance from the central COVID-19 Task Force, offices take decisions and actions in terms of local hospital tie-ups, suppliers for sanitizers and other requirements, as well as attendance policies based on the government regulations and directives issued in their respective locations. Consequently, decisions are swift, efficient and effective.
Keeping employees, customers and all stakeholders safe
A leading industry player with rich experience and expertise across a range of logistics business verticals, Allcargo has always given due importance to safety and security. Equipment operators, handlers, drivers, labourers, receive timely and regular safety training. Now, even COVID-19 awareness and guidelines are included as part of their training. In addition, across CFS’s, warehouses, project sites and facilities, a number of COVID-19 care and safety measures have been implemented.
• Social distancing practiced in offices and common areas like cafeterias and washrooms
• Use of face masks is compulsory
• Temperature checks for staff members and visitors
• Regular sanitization and disinfection of premises
• Auto sanitization at entry gates of CFS’s
• Appropriate signages to ensure employees and customers practice social distancing
• Getting regular updates from supervisors on the medical conditions of all the labourers and equipment operators
• Documents that come through courier are properly sanitized
Collaborate and communicate
While mitigating a crisis the world hasn’t seen before, collaboration is the best way forward. Whether it was managing space constraints at CFS’s to stop ports from getting choked, or maintaining cranes and equipment when they weren’t functional, Allcargo coordinated with players across the logistics system to understand each other’s challenges, analyse the situations and come up with feasible solutions.
Even with the restrictions of social distancing preventing meetings, Allcargo’s team kept in touch with customers. Through advisories, newsletters email responses, messaging platforms, video conferencing, customers were apprised of the changing situation, safety measures being taken and also received responses to their queries. Even today, equipped to operate remotely and work from home, teams across the world continue to not just communicate among themselves, but also effectively support customers with cargo transportation and business solutions.
Taking customer-centricity a step ahead, Allcargo has also helped its customers to conduct business 24x7 and ship with a click through ECU360, its state-of-the-art platform that has been launched in some countries.
Adapting to the new normal
In the new normal, safety is of paramount importance and needs to be treated as such. Since social distancing is the only plausible way to say safe, a definite shift towards more digital tools, automation and adoption of innovative technology is in the offing. And organisations that will succeed in future are those that unlearn, relearn and adapt.
Collective efforts towards COVID-19 care and safety will continue. Because each one may not know it all, but together, we can surely know enough to tide over.