Tips for Entrepreneurs: How Logistics Platforms can ensure Business Continuity Amid Crises Planning and devising strategies in advance will help your business sustain in the long run especially during a crisis

By Saahil Goel

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In a bid to contain the transmission of the novel coronavirus, governments across the world have placed countries under complete or partial lockdown. The outbreak, which has been declared a pandemic, has wreaked havoc on the world's economy. Businesses across verticals are facing the heat, with some businesses even closing temporarily. Sectors such as travel, hospitality, retail and transport have grounded to a halt.

The e-commerce and logistics sectors, at the same time, have been able to sustain their business; though they are also majorly impacted. During such times, the primary focus for e-commerce and logistics aggregators should be to keep the business afloat until the scenario stabilizes. Here are some tips for entrepreneurs to maintain business continuity for your logistics platform.

Stay digitally connected

For logistics and e-commerce businesses, delivery executives and on-field employees are crucial. However, employees who work out of an office must not be excluded. With technological advancements enabling us to communicate with anyone in any part of the world, staying digitally connected with your team is important. Times like these are when your organization will look up to you for guidance and support. It is necessary to communicate with them clearly and transparently. You can make use of tools such as Zoom, Skype, Slack, or Google Duo to schedule virtual meetings and have a discussion with your teams.

Contactless deliveries

With social distancing being advised strongly, one mustn't come in close contact with any other individual for the risk of transmitting the virus. In such as case, the contactless delivery feature will make for minimal contact and will ensure the safety of the customer as well as the delivery person. Brands such as Swiggy, Zomato, Dunzo, Shiprocket, and even restaurant chains such as Dominos and McDonald's are encouraging contactless deliveries to stop the coronavirus from being transmitted whilst delivering goods to a customer.

Delivery of essential items

The lockdown in India has been placed with the exception of essential services leading to an increased demand for essential items such as groceries, food items, and pharmaceuticals such as sanitizers and hand wash liquids, among others. Delivering essential items to your customers' doorsteps will help retain your customer base, which automatically paves the way for your business to weather the storm. Apart from this, it will also allow your customers to have access to essential items without a hunt at the supermarket.

Necessary precautions for delivery executives

Precautionary measures are a must for everyone, and more so for those who are out on the field such as delivery executives. Thus, it is important to ensure that your delivery executives are provided with sufficient hygiene-ware like masks and sanitizers to protect themselves while out on the field. This will allow the workflow to be continued in a seamless manner and delivery of items to customers will be accomplished efficiently.

Customer engagement and behavior

Customers are the heart of any business. Without them, the business would not exist. You need to regularly engage with your customers and note the changing consumer behaviour. In such uncertain and challenging times, people are bound to experience fear or panic, and staying connected with your customers through social media platforms can offer assurance. This will also help you to retain your existing customers and build professional relationships with new ones.

Though the world is currently reeling under the impact of the pandemic, with vaccination trials underway and relentless efforts by governments to contain the virus, hope is not far from home. The only effective suggestion is to maximize your efforts to help your logistics business stay afloat in the market.

Saahil Goel

CEO and Co-Founder, Shiprocket

Saahil Goel is the CEO and co-founder of ShipRocket (BigFoot Retail Solutions Pvt. Ltd.)

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