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Supply Chain Seeking New Technology

Supply chains are relying more and more on digital technology, which has led to the air cargo industry looking beyond the electronic air waybill.

Markus Flacke, managing director at CHAMP Cargosystems said one of his reasons for attending an IATA e-AWB workshop in Atlanta, was to promote the idea that the industry needed to look beyond the e-AWB.

“We need to think already about the digitisation of this industry. We already see a lot of electronic data exchange happening in this industry.” he said

The e-AWB is only the first step into connectivity. Once this connectivity has been made, a lot of items and discussions may become a lot easier. The information flow of the air cargo supply chain can be linked from a shipper all the way through to the consignee.

Flack said that since joining CHAMP, he has noticed a major increase in data volumes being pushed through its systems. He said the logistics and air cargo industries would secure the benefits of digitisation and there would be rapid adoption of digital systems over the next five years because of the benefits it can bring.

However, he admitted that companies needed to change they react towards IT if they were to fund its development.

“We are the beginning of what I would describe as a digital battle and in order to be successful in a digital battle you need to understand and make IT core of all your activities. 

“It is important that these companies engage in digital transformation and really champion IT in their whole thinking, they need to rethink processes and really need to start not only ask ‘how do I take my air waybill into the digital world?’ but ‘how do I make my whole workflow more digital?’.”

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