Probably an area that has been largely forgotten about during the COVID-19 period is logistics. The start of the pandemic was incredibly difficult to navigate for the domestic and European branches of the business especially. As countries & companies reacted, we had to navigate through a whole range of new experiences and way of working.
Drivers and transportation contractors started to perform no-contact deliveries whenever possible. The main issue here being drivers were not signing freight documents, such as Proof of Collections or Proof of Deliveries. This meant we had some customers querying if goods had indeed been collected or delivered. We couldn’t provide them with the POC’s or POD’s. This was because drivers would not sign paperwork nor get it signed because of safety reasons.
As you can imagine for me in logistics, this was a bit of a nightmare scenario.
Logistics and transport issues
The biggest upheaval that we suffered for our international side of the business was when airlines grounded their flights. As a result of this, the airline carriers pushed the air freight rates up. Pardon the pun, but the cost of logistics flew up to full IATA rates to start with. These charges then increased by an additional 300% in some cases shortly after.
Logistics during COVID-19 – products shipped during a pandemic
Rates were changing daily, making it impossible to ship by air as the market was just too volatile and unreliable. The knock-on effect to the sea freight market was huge. This made vessel space an absolute premium and in doing so, the carriers pushed their rates up as a reaction. With such a large demand globally for container space, rates went up, but the service went down initially. In logistics, sometimes poor service is “accepted”. Any other line of business and it would not be acceptable. But what do you do when you need to get products from A to B during a pandemic?!
I suppose though, COVID-19 has shown me one Company that helped Vectair and supported their customers during this exceptional period. We were very lucky to have such a good freight forwarder in Seko Logistics. They kept their costs down without it affecting the usual high standards of service that we are accustomed to.
So I end this by saying “Thank You” to Seko Logistics for being there for us when we needed them. They’ve made our logistics during COVID-19 a lot easier than what it could have been like. Thank you also to our customers for your loyalty, patience and support.
Steve Rhynas | Logistics Manager | Vectair Systems