Going the extra mile (again!)

One year on from winning a trade award for supporting GANT’s eCommerce channel, MIQ Logistics are in the frame again, this time for supporting New Era Cap’s NFL Wembley match-day delivery.

BIFA_FSA_WIN_EM_COL smallLast year the British International Freight Association (BIFA) recognised the unique contribution MIQ Logistics made to the success of GANT’s eCommerce channel, by awarding their Extra Mile Award at the annual Freight Service Awards.

See the GANT case study

The 2017 BIFA Freight Service Awards are being hosted in London next Thursday and MIQ Logistics have been short-listed again in the BIFA Extra Mile category, this time for exceptional customer support for New Era Cap.

MIQ Logistics are committed to delivering the highest levels of customer care and service, at the most challenging times for their customers.

MIQ Logistics client New Era Cap faced a potential disaster with their longest and most high-profile customer. A commercial and publicity nightmare, that they turned to MIQ Logistics to rescue them from.

The American football league – the NFL – has been an economic powerhouse for a hundred years.NEC-logo

In 2016 it generated $13bn in revenue. $3bn more than its closest rival and nearly $9bn more than the Premier League.

A typical NFL team will make in excess of $5m from direct merchandise sales, while global sales move into the billions.

Simply put; the value of team accessories cannot be overstated.

MIQ Logistics client, New Era Cap (NEC) is the official on-field cap supplier to the NFL.

So when New Era Cap (NEC) discovered that their consignment of team caps for the weekend’s Miami Dolphins and New Orleans Saints at Wembley were NOT going to arrive in time for the match, they turned to MIQ Logistics to make sure the teams had their hats when they ran onto the Wembley pitch in front of 85,000 fans and 15m viewers around the world.

At times of crisis, like this NFL situation, an intensive and focused customer service operation, that clients will not even be aware they have benefited from, called internally the ‘Critical Freight Audit’ is initiated.NFL

The international supply chain is full of hazards just waiting to cause disruption.

Disruption that is almost inevitable when goods require special handling, or when there is a challenging schedule, like this Wembley match day, to keep to.

The Critical Freight Audit (CFA) is triggered by MIQ Logistics account managers who identify or are advised of an unusual, demanding, or critical need.

Typically this will be a time-critical shipment(s), with profound implications for the clients operational, financial, or nervous well-being.

The over-arching objective of the CFA is to beat the deadline and communicate continuous updates to ensure that the client is kept informed and constantly reassured that everything remains on target.NEC-Web

Each CFA is scoped, planned and operated individually. It ensures that what should be done, is done; by the right person, in the right place, at the right time.

Central to the CFA’s success is the auditing process that plans out the physical and information critical paths as time-scaled milestones, identifying key actions and participants.

Responsibilities, required actions and deadlines are shared with participants in the supply chain and monitored as the shipments’ progress to point of delivery.

Participant performance, milestone clearance and the journey along the critical path is monitored, recorded and reported each step of the way to the client, who will be unaware that each move and update is being carefully orchestrated.

Shipments that are being monitored under a CFA are still processed through the MIQ operations system and visible online on the web tracking tools.

For the NFL match day consignment 15 milestones were identified and time-scaled to be completed 48 hours before kick-off at Wembley.

The first set of actions surrounded the intervention of the delayed consignment, which was on a vessel from Asia to Northern Europe.

The situation was communicated to the carrier Hapag Lloyd and an intervention team despatched to meet the vessel in Hamburg on Matchday -4.

With the container positioned in the vessel stack for a later delivery, multiple containers had to be removed, under the masters supervision, until the NEC container was identified and lifted off the vessel.

The team removed the container off Hamburg port under T1 to a bonded facility on Matchday -4,

At this point the container was devanned and the cargo sifted until the four cartons destined for the Miami Dolphins and New Orleans Saints teams were isolated.

The cartons were immediately cleared for Customs and despatched by courier for hand delivery to NEC Matchday -3.

At the same time that the Critical Freight Audit planned and expedited the delivery of the match-day team hats, the balance of the consignment was reloaded and transported with equal urgency, delivering into the NEC distribution centre on Matchday -2, which meant that the merchandise was available in stock for the game in the stadium on Matchday.

“With MIQ it’s a good partnership – they really do support our business”
New Era Caps