Professionalizing the Logistics SectorBy Antonio Gozain | Wed, 02/09/2022 - 09:20
Q: What is the main advice you would give to shippers and carriers during negotiations?
A: I would recommend shippers to forget about the old way of negotiating tariffs. Nowadays, negotiations must include clear cost structures that incorporate market knowledge. Tariffs must take into account operators, fuel and tolls.
Q: What is the main area of opportunity PELT sees within companies’ logistics operations?
A: PELT optimizes client’s logistics operations and offers other benefits. We focus on four main indicators: customer service, optimum inventory, forecast assertiveness and logistics cost. As the industry has evolved, so has PELT as a consultant. We have moved to velocity logistics to offer immediate technological results. PELT has proudly implemented sales and operations planning strategies.
Twenty-five years ago, the sector focused on customer service. It later changed to collaborative planning, forecasting and replenishment. Now, we all operate under the customer-centric philosophy.
Q: What role do distribution centers play in logistics chains?
A: Distribution centers are the heart of the logistics chain because everything operates and flows from there. These centers may be the most complicated links in the chain but they are also its most important, even though they are liked the least because they are not pretty. Reducing logistics costs does not mean decreasing tariffs but understanding the exact cost of the whole chain. Defining cost on a per-unit basis is another good practice.
The four indicators PELT follows must be measured throughout the supply chain. Everything must follow clear indicators, numbers, statistics and forecasts. Universities should teach more hard data so young graduates are better prepared. The Mexican sector has not progressed as it should because it needs to become more professional. Shippers and carriers should speak the same language. When companies measure data, as many already do, they stop depending on people and start depending on processes.
Q: What new opportunities has PELT identified in the logistics sector?
A: As a consultancy, we must be the link between shippers and carriers. We are the referee, the coach for both sides. We bring justice to logistics businesses. Despite all the advancements of the last several years, shippers and carriers still use immature processes.
PELT supports projects through the entire transformation. Our minimum project lasts six months and the longest is four years because we truly get involved with our clients.
Q: How do you start a project with a new client?
A: During the first meeting, we diagram our client’s entire chain to identify the pain points in every area. We usually sit down with two representatives from every indicator of the company, including finance.
Human resources departments are also crucial in logistics because they manage crews of loaders, warehouse managers, a complete fleet of operators, specialized mechanics and forklift drivers.
Q: What good practices for distribution centers favor the operation of the entire chain?
A: Good practices center on reducing times and making movements more efficient by adjusting arrivals and optimizing the entrance and exit of merchandise at the warehouse, among other strategies. This is where it is possible to save and automate. The warehouse floor is where great ideas originate.
Q: What are PELT’s priorities and objectives for 2022?
A: Our goal is to have 10 big projects every year. We are a technology company that offers tailor-made tech solutions. PELT has done projects for large companies, such as Chedraui, Milacron, Kellog and Pilgrim´s, but it is sometimes more exciting to work with SMEs. Large companies already have systems that work, so it is only necessary to delineate and optimize. With SMEs, we have to implement new systems from the start.
Profesionales en Logística y Transporte (PELT), founded in 2009, is committed to the professionalization of Mexican logistics based on productivity, savings and a continuous improvement approach to sourcing, demand and forecasting.