Adopting technology is ‘key to the survival of companies in the digital age’

Fulfillment and storage in the 21st century

Nattapume Pavaratn, executive committee member and senior vice president of JWD InfoLogistics, said there were many pain points in doing business, such as finding the right sales channel and managing operating costs.

Nattapume, who is also president of the Warehouse Silo and Cold Storage Business Association, said that consumer sentiment towards brands presents a challenge for companies.

Adopting technology is 'key to the survival of companies in the digital age'

To meet these challenges, he advised businessmen to improve warehouse management and be flexible so that they can meet consumer demands effectively. He also advised small business owners to embrace technology as it can solve their pain points effectively.

“Although technology can help entrepreneurs with warehouse management, they need to pay attention to many factors, such as company size and investments,” he said.

He also called on businessmen to pay attention to the environment, as the green economy is part of the 21st century megatrends, along with robotic automation, fintech, data-driven business and e-commerce.

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Jamie Ko, director of regional public affairs and policy at Grab, said the digital economy has brought benefits and opportunities to entrepreneurs, especially when it comes to finding customers.

Adopting technology is 'key to the survival of companies in the digital age'

As the digital economy in Southeast Asia has grown significantly during the COVID-19 crisis, he said, entrepreneurs need to collaborate with partners to reap maximum benefits from the digital economy.

“The question is how do we work together across all stakeholder groups to reap benefits from the digital economy,” he said.

E-commerce, cross-border impact on the ASEAN logistics industry

Cecile Barayre-El Shami, head of the Digital Economy Capacity Building Section at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), said many e-commerce platforms have benefited during the pandemic.

He explained that e-commerce sales have increased exponentially from US$2.5 trillion in 2019 to US$3.9 trillion in 2021, with the top three platforms being Alibaba, Amazon and

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Adopting technology is 'key to the survival of companies in the digital age'

He went on to say that ASEAN countries are working on the development of e-commerce, focusing on cross-border trade, business facilitation and consumer satisfaction by 2025.

However, he added, many countries in the region are less prepared to participate and benefit from electronic commerce, such as Internet access, logistics, availability of skills and government strategies.

To make digital trade more sustainable and inclusive, he said, ASEAN countries need to develop affordable and reliable ICT connectivity, develop digital skills to ensure everyone can access digital trade, and improve the regulatory framework and measurement.

“The e-commerce ecosystem needs the cooperation of all sectors, such as the government, the digital commission and non-governmental organizations,” he said.

Collaboration at the heart of eCommerce logistics

Behzad Goudarzian, logistics manager at United Arab Emirates supply chain solutions provider ISS Global Forwarding, said that collaboration is at the heart of e-commerce logistics.

He said that all sectors including consumer, market, seller, international freight, customs clearance, fulfillment and delivery must work together, otherwise the operation will face difficulties.

“All the gears should move relatively on the same page. If one gear stops, all the gears stop,” he said.

He also advised related agencies in the e-commerce and logistics industries to focus more on data integration, ease customs procedures, streamline processes and use reliable digital payments.

Adopting technology is 'key to the survival of companies in the digital age'

Meanwhile, Pravin Shetty, regional IT manager at ISS Global Forwarding, said that technology also plays an important role in the e-commerce and logistics industries, as it can ease many problems, such as system integration, secure transactions and mitigation. of risks.

He advised related agencies to apply four technologies to logistics and e-commerce operations, namely application programming interface, blockchain, internet of things and big data.

“Related agencies need to streamline rules, improve delivery, ensure the country’s infrastructure is in place, and make use of equipment and resources,” he said.

Logistics market platform time in the Mekong region

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Piyanoot Sumrith, president of the Thailand Transport and Logistics Association, said the Mekong region is well prepared to adopt the logistics market platform.

He added that people were now familiar with online shopping, thanks to the Covid-19 crisis in the last two years, as well as government incentives such as the Khon La Khrueng (Let’s go to half) copay scheme.

Piyanoot, who is also the managing director of delivery service WeMove Platform, expects the logistics market platform to meet customer demand once factors such as logistics and customs procedures become more fluid.

“It is a good time to build the logistics market platform as everything is ready, especially the technology,” he said.

Adopting technology is 'key to the survival of companies in the digital age'

James Marchant, Director of Logistics at Lazada Express (Thailand), said that although the Covid-19 crisis has changed the behavior of customers, their expectation of the best service never changes.

He said it’s only a matter of time before technology plays a big role in bringing a different experience to customers, such as drones and robots.

“There are a lot of trends that continue to accelerate, like how quickly and cheaply you can deliver and how strong your returns process is,” he said.

Rachelle Alexis Lim, executive director of strategy and business development at payment platform 2C2P, said that people prefer to shop online not only because of its convenience but also because their demands have changed.

Echoing Marchant, he said online adoption will help drive market efficiency in delivering experiences to customers, adding that many people prefer online payment over cash on delivery.

“Many companies have moved from brick-and-mortar commerce to e-commerce even after the pandemic,” he said.

The panelists also urged the government to collaborate with related agencies to develop a logistics market platform in the Mekong region and tackle it from various aspects, such as facilitating customs procedures and promoting the adoption of technology for sustainable growth.

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