Stuart Mann, Global
Implementation Manager, knows there’s no longer any excuse for compliance
With the development
of new markets and new products, global trade continues to generate new
opportunities for those in the logistics industry. Our reliance on these trade
flows and the cost of getting them wrong create enormous challenges for those
managing the supply chain. As international trade and national security
increasingly go in hand in hand, the spotlight shines brightly on compliance.
The policies, procedures, systems, and tools used to meet the expanding rules
of global trade can be broadly brought together under a Geo-Compliance Strategy
(GSC), and every day logistics companies in more than 100 countries rely on our
software to put geo-compliance at the heart of their operation.
In recent years,
with increasing globalization, everyone involved in international logistics has
become increasingly aware of one geo-compliance regulation or another. It’s
hard to avoid the frequently publicized news stories of companies receiving
massive fines for shipping the wrong thing to the wrong place at the wrong
time, yet, despite the growing awareness, there are still international
logistics organizations that do not have a deep understanding of the regulatory
landscape. Many freight forwarders became worldwide enterprises almost through
the back door, opening up a string of local offices at the request of their
major customers or by making acquisitions without fully understanding all the
local procedures. There are still major international companies operating in
many countries that are only just beginning to understand how to responsibly
manage global compliance.
multi-layered, multi-faceted, and ever-changing. I can understand why companies
might delay or shy away from developing a more effective GCS. After all, the
lack of global standards across the supply chain makes it appear almost
impossible to do so. Despite these obstacles, however, there are proven
software solutions that make compliance as feasible as any other area of
business administration. The logistics industry’s regulatory bodies, like IATA,
have implemented standards within their sphere of influence, but it’s just one
layer. Even within areas of political and economic union, like the EU, members
implement their own interpretation of regulations, and standards vary for just
about everything and are often documented solely in the local languages.
How can you best
manage and mitigate compliance risks? How can compliance be elevated to an
organization-wide strategy? How can you stay ahead of the curve?
Part of any
effective GCS solution must leverage the intelligence and functionality of
advanced supply chain technologies. When choosing a solution, look for a
provider that makes substantial investments annually into research that
analyzes the needs of specific industry sectors as well as global requirements.
comprehensive solutions contain full, multi-language capabilities; financial
accounting and reporting that eases the hassle of international transactions;
tax rates, default rules, and invoice layouts for accurate returns; current customs
regulations and procedures; supply chain security; and considerations of
environmental and carbon compliance. Compliance software should enable
forwarders to focus on what they do best, with the reassurance that local rules
and regulations are covered no matter what country your business operates in.
requirements are admittedly complicated, and the consequences of failing to
meet them are serious. However, the likelihood of a failure can be greatly
reduced through the use of enriched technologies deeply integrated in processes
throughout your enterprise. Not only will you reduce your risk profile, you
will also drive up productivity, thereby improving profit margins. As an added
benefit, you will ultimately qualify for expedited or lighter processing by
certain customs and other authorities.
Successful logistics companies understand
that geo-compliance strategies are dynamic and should be treated as such, and I
have witnessed firsthand how a future-proofed, well-executed GCS can truly set both
company and customer free.
Stuart Mann is Global Implementation Manager for WiseTech Global
Media Contact: Lisa Tree, firstname.lastname@example.org