SMEs have a larger stake in Indian manufacturing output and total exports, with nearly 40% of India’s workforce. Almost every SME across all industry verticals depend on logistics and shipping for their business establishment and growth. Logistics, which is the backbone of every industry vertical, has become quintessential in the growth and success of SMEs as well. Today, when the wheels of technological evolution are churning continually, even SMEs are leveraging technological advancements to automate shipping and excel their logistics divisions.
A World Bank Group study showcased that there are between 365 and 445 million Small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) in emerging global markets. Further, Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises of India highlights the stronghold of SMEs in the Indian market with nearly 42.5 million establishments. Although the Indian shipping sector has been slower in adopting digitization and automation yet the steady development in technology has helped India to improve its LPI (Logistics Performance Index) to 35 in 2016.
Automation in Shipping – Essentiality for modern SMEs
The last decade concluded the fiery debate about the sprouting of automation across the global business landscape. The success of automation in rocketing business growth and achieving targets has set the path for the future. When the majority of international players and industry giants are investing in automation to enhance the overall consumer experience, even SMEs are stepping ahead to shell out waves of cash to leverage automation in their fields.
Moreover, today’s business world has become customer-centric, where companies have waged cut-throat competition to deliver the best-in-class customer experience. In such a scenario, SMEs despite having benefits of agility and innovation also need to deliver consistent quality service as offered by the large competitors. This is where automation has come as the savior for SMEs and helped in stepping up the industry.
SMEs harnessing the Power of Shipping Automation
In today’s digital age, a myriad of applications is available to help SMEs achieve their objectives and deliver value to their customers. With the standardization of Cloud Technology and APIs (Application Programming Interfaces), companies can easily integrate automation. Automation is the future and right from CRMs to Email systems, this technology has proven its success.
Shipping costs, delivery time, and processes are completely driven by consumer expectations. Consumers also look forward to paying minimum charges for shipping with sufficient flexibility in the delivery models. Automation has made the complete end-to-end shipping process easier for SMEs by streamlining all the steps involved from packaging of the product to the last-mile delivery.
The best advantage that automation has brought to SMEs is ‘effective time management’. Companies can easily eliminate manual tasks and speed up the processes by adding automation rules. SMEs can manage customers’ orders in minimum possible time with ease of – pick, pack, and ship with the help of automation. SMEs can effectively manage each order received, set up a shipping method with priority, and regulate the deliverables with every detail of packing and shipping.
Automation has done more than just printing the customized receipts for the packages. Apart from setting shipping options, the modern shipping automation tech also allows companies to create their personalized set of instructions for packaging, shipping addresses, assigning the delivery to specific teams and others. In fact, SMEs can also set rules for specific orders that require insurance or signatures.
Whether it is an in-house arrangement of 3PL (Third Party Logistics) tie-ups for shipping, SMEs can ensure satisfactory customer fulfillment. The integration of shipping automation also helps companies in availing inexpensive and fast shipping options across e-commerce platforms.
The Positive Prospects of Shipping Automation
Automation has provided a litany of tools for the SMEs to ensure smooth shipping of their products and services. With the increasing adoption of shipping automation, the Indian SME sector is expected to cross the current growth rate of 10%, as observed by MSME India. With the optimistic approach that SMEs will integrate their organizational frameworks with shipping automation, the future of SME sector seems bright and great.
Mr Gaurav Gupta Founder EzySlips