Speed's the word
Expedited bidding process results in increased orders and satisfied customers for DHL Global Forwarding in Costa Rica
Speed is an important competitive advantage in the global marketplace. It's no longer the best or lowest-priced supplier that wins the bid - it's the one that submits it first. It's a lesson that the air and ocean freight people at DHL Global Forwarding (DGF) in Costa Rica had to learn the hard way.
One of the customer surveys conducted regularly by the company showed DGF's bidding process pulling in a mere 62 points out of a possible 100.
Whereas price levels and comprehensibility received positive ratings, customers showed clear dissatisfaction with the offer process. Offers from DHL simply took too long, and as a result, of the 300-some offers submitted monthly by DGF Costa Rica, only 40 per cent of them resulted in actual orders. It was a clear case for First Choice.
Achieving success through systematic analysis and development of solutions
A team of DGF employees, using various First Choice methods, analyzed previous bidding processes and found that it took an average of 30 hours to process ocean freight offers. This is unacceptable for most customers, who say that their patience runs thin after eight hours. The goal set by the Costa Rican team was an ambitious one - no more than four hours were to pass between receipt of request and submitting an offer.
After a thorough analysis of work flows and processes in sales, the First Choice team developed a series of measures geared toward reaching their targets:
- The Web site was fitted with an online request tool and a dedicated e-mail address. These additions provided customers with an alternative way to request and obtain an offer.
- The team developed automated Excel sheets for Sales to both simplify and accelerate the calculation of freight costs.
- A monitor now provides the sales team with data on the status of the various offer processes, allowing them to intervene where necessary.
A win-win situation for both DHL and its customers
The results: 92 times out of 100 DGF Costa Rica is turning around bids and submitting offers within three hours. That's even faster than the original target. Customers now get a taste of DHL efficiency right from the start during the bidding process. And it pays to be the first in line. On average DHL Global Forwarding wins 63 percent of its bids in Costa Rica. The benefits of the new procedure do not stop there, however. Thanks to continuous data collection and analysis, the sales team has been able to gather key information on the competitiveness of DHL prices. This means customers receive not only fast but competitively-priced offers as well.