Most supply chain and logistics companies map out their operations with best-case scenarios in mind. But what happens when everything doesn’t go perfectly to plan? How easy is it for you to pivot, and make sure you keep things on track as best as possible?
In a world that hinges so much on getting things done in a streamlined and cost-effective way, having proper exception handling processes – and the right communication tools to effectively execute them – can truly make or break your success.
Exception management is where you win or lose customers, keep your drivers and workers safe, and avoid costly incidents.
Common incidents where you need an exception handling plan
There are a number of common exceptions that supply chain and logistics companies should have a plan set in place for, including:
Failed deliveries – do your customers know what to do if they’ve missed a delivery? If you don’t have a clear and streamlined process in place for dealing with failed deliveries, it could have a huge impact on achieving that crucial customer satisfaction.
Incidents on the road – when near misses, accidents, and traffic delays happen on the road, you need to be able to quickly absorb these disruptions and recalibrate delivery times – all while ensuring the safety and wellbeing of your drivers.
Fatigue management –while operational processes should already be in place to reduce the risk of drivers and staff working overtime, there are still times when workers may become fatigued and need additional breaks that aren’t factored in.
Strong exception management begins with strong communication
One of the key ways to handle exceptions as they arise is being able to quickly and efficiently communicate with all stakeholders involved. Having the right communication tools on deck is not just a ‘cost’ or ‘nice-to-have’, but a necessary investment for supply chain and logistics companies.
Some of the ways in which communications can make a huge impact on your exceptional management capabilities include:
Most supply chain and logistics companies have a strong handle on how they communicate with their drivers and workers to get them the information they need, but what about providing a channel to receive communications back?
When things go wrong – like a truck breaks down, or an incident occurs – how easy is it for your staff to send communications back to you? Do they have to pick up the phone and call dispatch, which can be time-consuming and frustrating? Or can they hit a single button on their mobile phone to submit a form or trigger an escalation?
With the right two-way communication sequences built into your processes, you can make sure that when your drivers and workers need to get in touch with you, they can. By driving these two-way conversations using text messaging, you can provide a convenient option for workers to get in touch with you by using a channel they have easy access to.
Automated triggers based on events
With so many moving parts in a supply chain and logistics operation, the more automation you can build in, the better. Because exception management can be stressful, being able to rely on automation rather than manual intervention can make a huge difference.
By setting up triggers, you can ensure that when a certain event occurs, it’s automatically escalated in some way. For example, you can design a trigger so that when a driver reports an incident, a message is sent to a relevant person to alert them. Or, you can design a trigger so that when a driver is running late for a delivery, the end consumer is automatically updated.
In exception management, time is of the essence. So, being able to instantly send accurate messages is incredibly important. Creating a solution for this is usually two-fold:
You need a reliable digital communications platform that will be able to send messages instantly, and en-masse
You need to have pre-built templates for various scenarios so that you can quickly edit and send them out
Templates in particular are a great way of ensuring that messages you send out – even in a rush – are consistent, on-brand, and have a professional feel. With a platform like Whispir, anyone in your team should be able to use your pre-approved templates to edit and send out a message quickly and easily.
See how Whispir can level up your supply chain and logistics communications
Whispir is a multi-channel platform that makes it easy for you to create streamlined, automated, and engaging communications. We’ve worked with a number of supply chain and logistics companies around Australia and the world, and we know the unique challenges that come with this level of organisation and coordination.
We’d love to take you through the platform and explain how our technology can help you effectively manage exceptions and your operations. Book a free demo with us today, and experience the Whispir difference.