Cargo 2000 plans to raise the bar for airfreight quality standards
By Karen E. Thuermer
After some bumps and bruises getting it off the ground, Cargo 2000 is gaining momentum in setting standards to boost reliability, scheduling and the transparency of all processes in the airfreight sector. This includes all steps of moving freight by air from the consignor to consignee, as well as enhancing customer service at all levels.
Just recently, ABX Logistics Worldwide, one of Europe’s 10 leading transport and logistics groups, has become a full member of Cargo 2000. ABX Logistics Worldwide CEO Laurent Levaux, recently commented, “This will allow us to offer our customers greater transparency and precision, thanks to simpler, more harmonized procedures. We are happy to encourage all efforts to enhance the quality of the services delivered to our customers.”
ABX Logistics joins an impressive line-up of airlines, forwarders, and industry associates that have already signed up for Cargo 2000. Among the airlines are: Air Canada, Air France, Alitalia, American Airlines, Austrian Airlines, British Airways, Cargolux, Cathay Pacific, Delta, KLM, Korean Air, Lufthansa Cargo, NCA, Polar Air, SAS, Singapore Airlines, Swiss, and United. Forwarder members are ABX, DHL Danzas, Excel, GeoLogistics, Kuehne & Nagel, Panalpina, Schenker AG, SDV/SCAC, Trans-Trade and Yusen. Industry associates include: AF Logistik, Aviapartenr, Cargonaut, Menzies Aviation, Riege Software, Rutges, Swiissport, and Worldwide Flight Services.
Cargo 2000’s ongoing mantra is to improve the reliability and predictability of air cargo for shippers, and to enhance customer service and reduce costs for all participants. Driving the effort is a lack of industry standards. Those that are in place, such as cargo messaging, are being applied loosely.
“Another thing, there is no data whatsoever about how this industry is doing,” says Ron Cesana, Project Director of Cargo 2000. According to Cesana, shippers have continually asked this industry to improve.
“So we have added a system to what we are doing,” he says. “Everyone we talk to is looking for standards. Consignees also need some standard way of operating so that they not to have to adapt to each individual system or impose their own.”
Based on detailed customer research and with the assistance of leading IT companies, Cargo 2000 has re-engineered the air cargo transportation process from shipper to consignee through the creation of a ‘Master Operating Plan.’ The key to the group’s Master Operating Plan is the creation of a unique ‘route map’ for individual shipments that is monitored and measured throughout the delivery cycle of each shipment. This sits at the heart of an industry-wide process control and reporting system that in turn drives data management and corrective action systems.
By reducing the number of individual processes in the air cargo supply chain from 40 to just 19, Cargo 2000 is less labor intensive and improves the processes for managing shipments in a paperless environment. It substantially reduces time spent managing irregularities, such as service failures, cuts the time required for manual track and trace procedures and leads to a reduction is service recovery costs.
Cargo 2000’s quality management system is being implemented in three distinct phases. Phase 1 manages airport-to-airport movements - shipment planning and tracking at Master air waybill level. Once a booking is made, a plan is automatically created with a series of checkpoints against which the transportation of every air cargo shipment is managed and measured. This enables the system to alert Cargo 2000 members to any exceptions to the plan, allowing them to respond pro-actively to fulfill their customers’ expectations.
Phase 2 is responsible for shipment planning and tracking at the House air waybill level, and provides interactive monitoring of the door-to-door movement. The third and final phase of Cargo 2000 manages shipment planning and