CeBIT 2012: Will NBN speed up freight delivery times?

DB Schenker ANZ chief executive says the NBN will reduce tardy supply chain processes, ensure customers receive goods faster

The National Broadband Network (NBN) is vital for the Australian logistics industry as it will cut delays in business to business data exchange and speed up freight delivery times, according to DB Schenker Australia and New Zealand chief executive, Ron Koehler.

Speaking at CeBIT, Koehler told delegates that the logistics company currently faces challenges when customers attempt to transmit very large client order files, including high resolution images, to its online exchange, leading to delays in order processing.

“Customers have to stop all other data processing activities in order to ensure sufficient network bandwidth when transmitting to the company,” he said.

“We are a heavy user of bandwidth and some of those high speed broadband services are not currently available where we have our warehouse locations around Australia."

Koehler cited a report from Forrester Consulting, Australian E-commerce 2010, conducted with 54 Australian online retailers which found that 20 per cent of respondents identified logistics and delivery delays as the single biggest barrier to retail growth.

“In the age of shopping online and promises of fast delivery turn around, we need to make sure the supply chain is engineered towards meeting expectations,” he said.

According to Koehler, the NBN will allow it to deliver full electronic monitoring and reporting of goods to all of Australia which would reduce the need for order paper work.

DB Schenker currently tracks goods online and sends SMS messages to retail customers when their order has left the factory. On the day of the delivery another SMS will be sent with the estimated delivery time.

Koehler said Australian corporations have “extremely high” benchmarks when it comes to the supply chain.

“These benchmarks are often in the high 90 per cent. We meet these benchmarks now, but the speed and capacity of the NBN will allow us to take those metrics up another notch,” he said.

“The outcomes [of the NBN] for clients and consumers should mean cost savings throughout the supply chain network and greater efficiencies and profitability.”

DB Schenker Australia operates out of 17 locations including Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane.

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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