42% of shipping and freight professionals want to change their supply chain strategies post Covid-19
A recent survey of over 300 shipping and freight professionals across the world has brought out some key indicators that will inform the future course of global supply chains.
One of the most important trends unearthed was the readiness to change supply chain strategies (42.5%). Additionally, answers and a large number of comments on the survey questions point to the overall adaptability of the industry and that a renewed surge in the demand for technology solutions can be expected, with 67.6% of the survey takers indicating they will invest in technology.
The survey, conducted by Shipping and Freight Resource and sponsored by Ocean Insights, the Ocean Freight Tracking System provider, was designed to measure the effect of the coronavirus pandemic on global supply chains. It collected and analysed data on three key aspects – impact, preparedness and recovery.
The survey was answered by carriers, logistics providers, freight forwarders/NVOs, consultants, shippers/BCOs (95.7%) and other (4.3%) industry professionals across job levels – C-Level, director/top management, middle management, and operations.
59% of survey takers said their operations had been significantly affected; 25% were moderately affected while 14% were somewhat affected. Only 1% maintained they were not affected while a negligible number stated they were unsure.
Survey participants were asked to check multiple options with respect to affected operations. 70% experienced volume decline, 61% were hit with transit delays, 50% with delays from port to customers and 40% with lack of capacity.
Furthermore, based on additional comments, operations suffered from other factors such as late or non-payment from clients, cancelled credit lines from physical carriers, inconsistent volume demand and increased costs.
With respect to communications with their shipping and supply chain partner, 35% experienced delayed communications while 10% stated they received scarce communications, while 4% were unsure. Most (51%) were receiving real-time, ongoing communications.
On recovery, a large 42% of survey takers said they would change their shipping and supply chain strategy based on their experience with the coronavirus pandemic, 29% said they may change their strategy, and 29% said they would not.
Survey takers expressed they would invest in technology (67%), employees (33%), assets (26%), acquisitions (13%) and other aspects (12%) as part of their recovery efforts post the pandemic.
Most of the survey takers expect to recover from the hit they have taken due to the pandemic. They were given multiple options to gauge how the recovery from this would be. Only 2% expect not to recover. 43% expect a slow recovery, 38% a moderate recovery, 19% a fast recovery and 3% were unsure.
A statement about the survey summed up “It is realistic to expect a slow recovery from this pandemic, considering the major hit the global economy has taken. However, we expect technologies to play a crucial part. The unusually high number of comments (over 200) by the survey takers strongly reinforced this.”