Advanced automation, cost optimization and high-quality customer service are critical factors for success, says Sean Crook, Director of freight forwarding business NEOLINK.

“Our advantage is that we started the company with a technology first focus. The business plan was predicated on the fact that if done correctly, automation and technological integration with skilled people could provide an incredible point of difference in a saturated freight forwarding market,” explains Sean.

NEOLINK needed a platform that could integrate across the business – from accounting and HR, through to warehousing, freight forwarding and customs – and provide the ability to automate processes and improve productivity.

“We chose CargoWise because we knew it was ahead of the game in this space and would be a key partner for us to work with and achieve our business goals.”

Sean explains that using CargoWise means no more manila folders, heavily departmentalized teams, menial tasks for workers to complete or unnecessary offshoring to cut costs.

Through workflow automation, tasks and processes are fine-tuned and configured, meaning NEOLINK has optimized its operating costs and has been able to invest savings back into the business to deliver more tailored, value-added solutions for its clients.

“CargoWise’s workflow and productivity tools have dramatically increased the operational efficiencies in our business. Entering data into the system once, setting up workflows and triggers for tasks and processes, online tracking of cargo, easy-to-produce reporting – CargoWise is one integrated system that provides insights across the supply chain and our business operations,” says Sean.

With more time and resource freed up, NEOLINK can now focus on providing clients with value-added services. “With CargoWise, we’ve been able to remove menial administrative tasks which allows our Customer Operations team to process more with less. In turn, this has allowed us to be extremely competitive in the marketplace against bigger competitors. And as a result, we’re able to invest more in our people, invest more in our systems and technology and build our presence across international freight network associations.

“It’s also allowed our people to take ownership and empowered them to spend more time engaging with our customers and really understanding their business needs so they can make better decisions, quicker and earlier.”

With the impact of COVID-19 across the supply chain, Sean says one of the benefits of using cloud-based CargoWise is that it allows the business to continue to function without interruption during times of uncertainty. “Implementing CargoWise across the business has allowed us to be very agile and adapt quickly to changing situations, like COVID-19. We've got a system that's automated and a mobile workforce where everyone has a laptop, mobile phone and can work remotely through the cloud. And our business model allows us to engage and move quickly to meet our customer needs.

“One recent example was supporting one of our clients that needed to urgently airfreight high level disinfection systems from France to Australia. These disinfection systems are assisting our hospital emergency rooms, intensive care units and theatres to cope with COVID-19. With the added challenges of France being in lockdown, Tina from our Customer Operations Team was able to move quickly, efficiently and provide a tailored solution in a timely manner that delivered a win/win outcome for all key stakeholders. Without the additional investments made into CargoWise, we would have moved slower, inefficiently and would have taken up a lot more resource hours away from other clients, potentially not providing the best possible solution”.

Investing in continuous improvement is business as usual for NEOLINK, with all staff having completed CargoWise accreditation. As for what the future holds, Sean says online shopping and smaller parcel shipping is becoming an increasingly important component of the industry mix. “We will continue to invest in our business infrastructure and CargoWise to support our future in the e-commerce space. We need to be ready not just for today, but also the next 5-10 years as we work closer with our customers and how we can add value to their B2C supply chains.”

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