The present day highly globalized world is still seeking answers to the problem of shipping delays disrupting the smooth functioning of the global supply chain. Shipping delays are caused due to a number of reasons and unfavorable weather conditions are the most common cause for it. Extraordinary situations like the pandemic wreaked havoc on the global supply chain. Suez canal blockage was also one such circumstance when hundreds of ships got blocked, alarming the shipping industry. A shipping delay due to an obvious cause is neglected as the inevitable and nothing is done to alter the status quo. A proactive logistic department could do wonders in such a scenario if they applied predictive analytics to find alternative shipping routes. There are numerous loopholes in the shipping industry that paves way for shipping delays.
Reasons for shipping delay
- Unfavourable weather conditions:Bad weather is a major reason for shipments not reaching the destination on time.
- Port Congestion:Port congestion has been a long-standing problem causing shipping delays and continues to affect the shipping industry till this day.
- Container shortages: Container shortage is a major concern for the shipping that can seriously affect import- export.
- Alterations in service schedules : Changes in service schedule can delay a ship’s departure, arrival, loading and unloading.
- Overbooking and rollovers: Shipping sector is known to overbook carriers in anticipation of last-minute cancellations.
This can result in roll over causing delay of shipment.
- Space shortage: Late bookings may cause you to miss the slot forcing you to delay the shipment.
- Rate fluctuations: Sudden rate increase due to high demands may lead you to hold your shipment in expectation of a rate decrease.
- Peak season: Carrier space is tight and prices high during the peak season when traders are aiming to cash in on holiday shopping season.
- Delayed Customs Clearance: False cargo information and incomplete documentation can lead to your containers being held up for customs inspection and examination.
- Vessel sharing: There are instances where two or more shipping lines share vessels on a specific route to expand their service network. When you make a booking with one such company, your cargo is transported part of the way by another company. The two might not use the same routes and your shipment might end up on a ship with a longer route.
- External factors: Some external conditions such as wars, terrorist attacks, piracy, natural disasters, vessel collisions, and lost or stolen cargo can cause a long delay.
How does shipping delay impact business?
Any kind of shipping delay is seriously bad for business. A shipment delay can affect various aspects of your business.
- Unhappy customers: Delayed shipment can seriously hurt customer loyalty. An importer is less likely to buy from an exporter who cannot deliver shipment on time.
- Disrupting cash flow: If you don’t deliver your goods on time, you don’t get paid on time. This creates cash flow problems that affect your day-to-day operations.
- Manufacturing : Delayed shipment can even halt manufacturing.
- Extra expenses: If your shipment is delayed for an extended period of time it will invite a lot of additional expenses.
- Reduction of cargo value: An extended transit time can be disastrous for perishable cargo causing huge loss to the stakeholders.
How to overcome shipping delays?
- Specific time limit: Set realistic delivery time goals that are appealing to the customer.
- Inventory updation: Regular updation of inventory helps in timely shipment delivery.
- Warehouse maintenance: A well maintained warehouse is easier to manage and aids in time management.
- Usage of latest technology: Turning to automated logistic software helps to avoid delivery delays.
- Proactive measures: Proactive measures applied by shipping companies like finding alternative routes, advance planning to accommodate peak season demands etc could prevent shipping delays to a great extent.
Shipping is extremely crucial to the global economy as it directly affects business. The expertise of a seasoned shipping company could save companies from the issue of delayed shipment. Dunes Cargo and Shipping is considered as a global standard in shipping and is determined to provide hassle free timely delivery of shipments.