Making Last Mile Convenient

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Making Last Mile Convenient

“Last mile delivery as the final touchpoint with the consumer is one of the most important and decisive moments for the merchant. As a Group, we have explored various innovations to enable greater convenience, choice and control for the consumer. In India through Blue Dart, we have piloted parcel lockers to enable convenience for consumers and mobile wallet solutions as cash-on-delivery is the preferred mode of payment here,” remarks Malcolm Monteiro, CEO Asia Pacific, DHL eCommerce, during this exclusive interaction. Read on to get insights into DHL’s innovation expanse and more such interesting express courier trends…

What are the USPs that sets DHL apart from the rest?

Deutsche Post DHL Group is the world’s largest logistics provider with a network of over 220 countries and territories. This allows us to have the scale, expertise and network to provide our customers with end-to-end logistics solutions. Our global standards in quality also ensure we provide best-in-class solutions for our customers.

Kindly share with us some of the innovations done in the express & courier industry by DHL.

As a Group, we have a rich history of innovation and the e-commerce boom represents an excellent opportunity. In fact, our DPDHL Group Strategy 2020 vision clearly states our aim to be a leader in e-commerce related logistics, and we are investing heavily in this exciting sector.

Last mile delivery as the final touch point with the consumer is one of the most important and decisive moments for the merchant. As a Group, we have explored various innovations to enable greater convenience, choice and control for the consumer. For instance, in India through Blue Dart, we have piloted parcel lockers to enable convenience for consumers and Mobile Wallet solutions as cash-on-delivery is the preferred mode of payment here. In Europe, we have also piloted solutions such as car trunk deliveries and smart locks that would allow deliveries to be made to the consumer when they are not available to receive parcels in person; or drone deliveries to reach out to inaccessible areas.

How are you planning to leverage the e-commerce industry?

E-commerce is currently the most talked about sector, with the global B2C e-commerce market size set to reach USD 1 trillion by 2020. There is a huge opportunity in this fast-changing landscape, and Asia Pacific is the fastest growing region for e-commerce and an important focus for us. We see logistics as the game changer for the industry, and the brands and e-tailers who get this right and are able to deliver the best experience for consumers will win in this exciting space. Over the years, we have made significant investments in the region to help enable our customers leverage the opportunities in the e-commerce industry, and we will continue to expand our service offering along our three product pillars: cross border delivery, fulfillment and last mile delivery.

How do you keep your employees motivated?

At DHL, we place great focus on employee engagement and strongly believe that an engaged employee base will not only spur growth, innovation and productivity in our business, but also deliver the best customer experience and financial performance for the company. We aim to be the Employer of Choice and have set ourselves goals to ensure we score high in the areas of employee engagement and active leadership, in our annual employee opinion survey.

Personally, I spend a lot of time ‘walking the floor’ or ‘GEMBA walk’as part of our company’s First Choice culture. I make it a point to regularly meet employees through town halls, one-on-one meetings as well as casual sessions. I believe in the importance of open, regular communication, as well as active listening to get opinions and encourage feedback from all employees.

DHL works a lot with young minds and empower them to think unconventionally. How are you planning to mold their minds in bringing about game changing innovations?

We have a strong focus on innovation and I understand the need to encourage creativity and out-of-the-box ideas with teams. With the rapidly-changing nature of e-commerce, this is exceptionally important. At DHL eCommerce, I work closely with a number of young people and they often come up with different and insightful perspectives.

For instance, recently, we set up an Asia Pacific Innovation Steering Committee aimed at brainstorming ideas for new innovations for the business. We appointed a young intern to lead this project and encouraged her to bring fresh ideas to the table. I believe the new generation of young minds or the ‘millennial generation’ is not short of ideas and creativity. As the management team, it’s more important for us to focus on empowering and enabling them by providing them with guidance, support and space to innovate.

What are the challenges in the path to progress?

The challenge for e-commerce merchants is how they can quickly adapt to rising consumer needs and make it simple and easy for their consumers to shop. This means being agile and flexible in their operations – DHL eCommerce aims to be a strategic partner to take care of their logistics so that merchants can focus on growing their business.

What are your future plans in place?

Our aim is to become a leader in global e-commerce related logistics activities focused on three areas: fulfillment, cross border delivery and domestic delivery. In order to do this, DHL eCommerce aims to expand internationally and focus on growth opportunities in selected B2C markets. In Asia Pacific, we will expand across the region in China and India as the biggest markets, and also in Southeast Asia where we see huge potential.

How do you view India as far as global strategic vision is concerned?

India is a key market for Deutsche Post DHL Group and we have developed a strategic roadmap for India as one of our key focus markets in the group. In India, we will focus on maintaining our market leading position in the B2B segment through our subsidiary Blue Dart, and further add B2C capabilities by reducing last mile costs, adding lots of consumer convenience options, improve service levels and expand our reach in the country. We will also focus on enabling merchants in India to sell via e-commerce to the world through our DHL network. We will continue to develop capabilities and infrastructure in India through all our DHL business units – DHL Express, DHL Supply Chain, DHL Global Forwarding and DHL eCommerce through Blue Dart.

Your views on changing business paradigms and how can one become successful.

Digitization has the power to disrupt existing business models. Recognizing this, being innovative, even more customer-centric, entrepreneurial, embracing change and enjoying the challenge, builds a culture of sustainable success.

What are the qualities in today’s youth that you find quite appealing to lead the next wave of growth?

Today’s youth are highly adaptable, innovative and entrepreneurial. With the rise of the on-demand economy, e-commerce and technology, this creates a lot more possibilities for today’s youth. I also see a growing trend in youths wanting to contribute to the wider society and environment and a strong sense of purpose.


What keeps you motivated? Having a sense of purpose and achievement while knowing and liking that I am making a difference keeps me motivated. More importantly I enjoy the journey and ensure I stay fit to lead by being in a state of balance physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. While success is the destination everyone strives to reach, the journey is more important. I believe that if you enjoy the journey and put your heart into it, the destination is a given.

Who’s an exceptional leader according to you and what’s your leadership style? An exceptional leader builds relationships of trust across the organization, has personal credibility, energizes the team and is results oriented. I strive to instill in my team a sense of purpose and trust to enable them give their best and realize their full potential. The journey to success is a journey of many small steps to enjoy, learn from and celebrate.

Which book you have read recently and how has it impacted you? The Fourth Industrial Revolution by Klaus Schwab – a very thought provoking book that explores how new technologies are merging the physical, digital and biological worlds. For me, the key message is to embrace this change as it holds huge opportunities and can significantly alter current business paradigms.

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