“Over the last decade, we have invested billions in technology development and infrastructure to make doing business globally just as easy as it is domestically,” says Khayat. “The enhancements save customers time and money by streamlining the preparation, management and tracking of multiple types of shipments, whether domestic or international, small package or heavy freight.”
With the region cottoning on to the long-term benefits of innovation in express logistics, experts are hoping that evolution in the way the Middle East frees up the innovative process will gain momentum. “Innovation is important in every nature, sector and area of business,” says Alexander Borg, regional director and co-ordinator for the UAE Chartered Institute for Logistics & Transport (CILT). “In recent years the logistics industry has continued to evolve and ICT Innovation has been a key contributor in this evolution.”
Borg believes that there must be growing recognition that companies operate in a market driven environment, which means that the customer is demanding more from the provider. In turn, innovation must be customer-focused and have the qualities that customers value over others such as technological advancement and sustainability. “Technology is the driving force behind the environment which makes this innovation happen and sustainability is the foundation upon which we have to build our business on long-term,” Borg emphasises.
Furthermore, as Jones from Innovation Leaders points out, the winners in a competitive global industry such as express logistics will be those that innovate internally around improved efficiency and externally with new services for their customers that make a tangible difference to the experience they get. “Like all sectors, complacency and assumptions that tomorrow will be similar to today are the main barriers to innovation,” he says. “Change is happening both within and outside the sector and that will act as a catalyst for innovation. Companies need to see the changes early and act on the associated opportunities.”