David Stock – UPS focus on the customer experience

Category: Operations
David Stock - UPS focus on the customer experience

Speaking to David Stock, UPS Vice President Marketing, at the The Delivery Conference, he explains how their service is all about the customer and the experience for the recipient. With a day definite delivery confirmed at despatch, the focus on the recipient goes right down to making a photo of the final mile driver available. This is a pan European approach to ensure customer satisfaction.

With continued supply chain disruption, what are the best tactics to ensure stock is in the right place at the right time?

With geopolitical and capacity impacts from China, supply chain disruption has been very real. David emphasises that retailers need to build some resilience into their supply chains and part of that is to choose a trusted 3rd party logistics partners. Don’t just have a Plan A, David says, have a Plan B and a Plan C. That’s what UPS do and have to maintain as they know challenges will occur and to maintain their day definite delivery they must remain agile and be prepared to switch routes. The UPS ground network is the fastest in Europe with a day definite delivery network.

Sustainability is perhaps the most important metric in 2023, how can UPS assist retailers in their eco-journey

UPS have an aggressive CO2 approach and aim to reduce 50% by 2035 per package, supported by schemes such as their programme of rolling out e-cycles for the final mile delivery. By 2050 they have a target to be fully carbon neutral.

Access Points perform an important part of their sustainability approach, not just to reduce deliveries but also to eliminate 2nd deliveries when the first fails. It’s significantly better for a consumer to collect from a local Access Point than for the parcel to be transports 10s of miles back to a depot just to be taken out again the following day.

Which territories around the world do you see the most potential for UK exports for retailers?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, The US, and Europe, particularly Germany are seen as prime target territories for export. However David also suggests taking a look at the recent UK Trade Agreements struck with countries around the world. They not only suggest an appetite for consuming goods from the UK, but the trading conditions should be more favourable.

Aisa is also a particular opportunity that shouldn’t be ignored.

With unprecedented disruption from strikes and other external factors impacting on all carriers in Q4, how can retailers plan for 2023?

Be resilient, plan to be agile and pivot quickly is David’s top advice for retailers when considering potential future disruption. We’ve seen in recent times how impacts from one carrier can have a knock on effect across the industry so having back up plans and acting swiftly is key.

UPS plan for network contingencies and while they are alway unpredictably they’ve a 115 year history during which they’ve become known to be relied upon. It’s only by planning for the unexpected and being ready to act at a moments notice that they are able to maintain this reputation,

In a world where there’s not just one crisis, but multiple events appearing not only one after the other but increasingly of late another starts before the first crisis subsides, agileness and Plan B and Plan C are perhaps the biggest lesson retailers can learn to emulate from UPS. Expect the unexpected and be ready to act.


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