The SCALA Annual Logistics Debate is one of the few industry events where the views of the audience are just as important as the speakers on stage.
Below are the responses from the audience on a series of questions set by the speakers and also by leading industry publication The Grocer.
There are a number of useful nuggets of information held within the responses. For example, just under a quarter of the audience stated that the major factor stopping their logistics operation from delivering world class service is a shortage of talent in the industry.
JO CAUSON – Institute of Customer Service
Q1: What will happen to customer satisfaction in the UK in the next 12 months?
• Increase 26%
• Decrease 43%
• Stay the same 31%
Q2: How will your organisation’s investment in customer service change in the next 12 months?
• It will increase 60%
• It will decrease 12%
• It will stay about the same 28%
Q3: What will be your organisation’s priority for investment in the next 12 months?
• Systems and infrastructure 57%
• People development and skills 43%
• Only 26% of respondents feel customer service will improve
• Despite the fact that only 12% believe investment in customer service will decline
SARAH GREENFIELD – Unilever
Q: What are the barriers to creating true collaborative networks in the UK?
• Costs/potential loss of profitability 10%
• Fear of Losing competitive edge 36%
• Lack of Pull from Retailers 10%
• Current network design e.g. lack of shared WH solutions 17%
• Lack of technology and/or forum to forge collaborative partnerships 26%
• Nearly half of the respondents (46%) cited commercial concerns as the main barriers
• A quarter of respondents (26%) believe new technology or organisations are required
GLENN LINDFIELD – Great Bear
Q: What is the major factor which hinders your logistics operation from delivering World Class Service?
• Consumer price pressure 15%
• Restrictive, out of date contracts 11%
• Lack of capital investment 19%
• Shortage of industry talent 24%
• Volatile consumer buying behaviour 32%
• Just under half of respondents (47%) believe consumer pressures are the major factor
• Just under a quarter of respondents believe the logistics sector lacks talent
OLIVER COFLER – Mondelez International
Q: How important is collaboration to your supply chain strategy?
• Unimportant 1%
• Of little importance 7%
• Moderately important 13%
• Important 21%
• Very important 57%
• Only 8% of respondents admitted to collaboration being of little or no importance
TERRY MURPHY – John Lewis
Q: What is the most important supply chain challenge that must be addressed in order to deliver world class service in the omni-channel economy?
• Customer Proposition 21%
• Increased use of Mobile 5%
• 24/7 Operations 12%
• Impact of increased cost to serve 24%
• Managing Inventory effectively to support both Online and Shop demand 38%
• Inventory management considered by far the biggest single development challenge (38%)
• But the customer proposition and its associated cost were cited by just under half (45%)
KEITH DOE – SHUTL
Q: Are you more likely to purchase an item from a retailer that offers a one-hour delivery promise?”
• No, I wouldn’t use that service 11%
• Maybe, but not a lot 23%
• Don’t know 3%
• Yes, a little more likely 32%
• Yes, a lot more likely 32%
• Just under two thirds of people (64%) admitted they would be more likely to buy from a retailer with a one-hour promise
Q: Is the logistics function adequately represented at board level?
• Yes 42%
• No 58%
• Just under 60% believe logistics is not adequately represented – a surprisingly low figure considering the audience?