Agility & Manufacturing on the Move
Muscat – Have you noticed the number of trucks travelling up and down Oman’s highways? If they do their work properly, then the seamless transport of goods in and around the country goes almost completely unnoticed. But if they make a mistake, there is the potential for businesses at every part of the supply chain, from the raw material providers to the manufacturers to the end sales points, to be affected. In simple terms, if somebody makes a mistake your favourite shampoo won’t be on the supermarket shelves.
The Middle East is fortunate to be sitting right at the crossroads of the major Asia-to-Europe and Asia-to-Africa trade routes, making the region an attractive transhipment point. However, according to Chris Clark, Country Manager for Agility in Oman, one of the region’s leading logistics providers and main sponsor of PEIE’s Smart Manufacturing Conference, 15 – 16 April, Crown Plaza Hotel (http://www.peie.om/smartman.asp) "the Middle East is not merely a stopover for freight on its way to and from elsewhere.”
“As a leading global logistics firm we have to ensure everything is planned in advance and that there are no surprises. Our customers who we treat as our partners have very high expectations of Agility; we strive hard to meet those expectations." What makes this even more difficult for companies like Agility is that every project is different and can have a hundred variations as per the needs of the client, so there is no fixed formula to follow. "Some customers will only use us at one point in their supply chain, so we'll only be responsible for taking things from their warehouses to stores or the port while other firms involve us in the entire supply chain process. For example, taking products from the factory, packaging and shipping, then moving them through customs to warehouses and then to stores. The customers specify a date and we speak to the manufacturers, plan shipments and make sure it arrives on time.”
Clark also emphasized the role of technology in today’s logistics business. He highlighted: “Instantaneous global data transmission opens up the supply chain to near full visibility. With access to the Internet, our customers can track the position of their shipments at any given time. Not only does this ensure the smooth flow of goods as per schedule but also allows for alarms to be raised if shipments are delayed or do not arrive as expected.” He added: “Technology is helping Agility push back the boundaries. We’re working harder than ever to ensure our customers’ schedules are met. In today’s inter-connected world, logistics is at the very heart of business and as one of the leading logistics companies in the region, we have a lot to offer.”
Speaking about their participation in the event, Clark explained: “Logistics has become extremely important to the manufacturing sector and we have key knowledge and experience that can benefit Omani firms operating in this sector. We’re delighted to be supporting PEIE’s Smart Manufacturing Conference and the soon-to-be-launched Oman Manufacturing Group (OMG) and we look forward to sharing our logistics know-how with attendees. By supporting PEIE’s Smart Manufacturing Conference and the OMG Agility is also contributing to the development of Oman’s national economy.”