Logistics Giant Aramex Innovates Their Last Mile Delivery with Nexmo APIs
ChallengeAramex needed to heighten the effectiveness of its delivery process and enhance the customer experience. The solution needed to be implemented quickly.
SolutionThe WhatsApp Business solution through Nexmo's Messages API
ResultsIn the first six months of integrating WhatsApp:
- 1M+ customers served through WhatsApp
- 19% decrease in inbound calls after transitioning inquiries to WhatsApp
- 41% of shipment inquiries processed by WhatsApp
The growth of digital transformation throughout a variety of global industries has been astounding. But, nowhere has the transition to digitization been more pronounced than within global logistics and transportation companies. As more and more purchasing power shifts to e-commerce, a seamless last mile experience becomes crucial to satisfying consumers’ needs. The resulting surge of shipments has made digital transformation and last mile innovation imperative to streamline logistics and transportation processes.
A 2018 industry report has predicted that digital transformation spending in the global logistics market will reach nearly US$ 95 million by 2026. Savvy businesses are recognizing the game-changing benefits that come with digital transformation, such as:
- heightened efficiency and consumer experiences
- broader awareness and reach of products and services
- higher productivity
- innovative business models
To realize these benefits, companies must adopt new practices and deploy innovative technologies to support them.
Just ask Mohammed Sleeq, Chief Digital Officer at Aramex. The company has been around for over 35 years and is today a logistics and transportation solutions leader and innovator. Based in Dubai, Aramex operates in over 65 countries with 16,500+ employees. During recent years, Sleeq and his team have been key contributors to the company’s ongoing digital transformation.
“Since its foundation in 1982, Aramex has grown to become a global leader in the logistics and transportation industry, recognized for its customized and innovative services for businesses and consumers. Our breadth of services includes International and Domestic Express Delivery, Freight-forwarding, Logistics and Supply Chain Management, e-Commerce, and Record Management,” said Sleeq.
“While we continue to compete with the traditional global logistics operators, the rise of a new breed of competition, fueled by the growth of global e-commerce, is changing the competitive landscape. In order to remain competitive, we need to upgrade our technology-enabled solutions to allow for faster and more efficient delivery of parcels from point A to point B.”
Sleeq explained that what is disrupting the industry more than anything else today are the new “Last Mile” technologies used by both large and small e-tailers and the new digital logistics operators. In the journey from warehouse shelf to customer doorstep, the “last mile” of delivery is the final and most important step of the process— it’s when the package is delivered to the consumer. Although this step is critical in terms of providing a positive customer experience, Last Mile delivery has traditionally been the most expensive and time-consuming part of the fulfillment process. Innovation is changing that.
New, advanced technology-enabled fulfillment solutions are at the heart of this digital transformation. “We’re talking about everything from autonomous vehicles and drones, all the way to applying data science to enhance the customer experience, or finding the location of a customer and their last mile preferences and almost eliminating the need to contact them via phone,” said Sleeq. “We can today identify and deploy the best communications solutions to ease and expedite delivery. What happens in that last mile will continue to be the primary differentiation factor for companies such as Aramex, and this is where the company has been focusing its resources over the last year and where it will continue to in the future.”
Nexmo Delivers Speed-to-Market for WhatsApp Launch
With so much at stake, Sleeq and his team needed to ensure that the technology platforms selected to support their digital transition enabled the highest level of efficiency. Aramex started by choosing Nexmo’s SMS API for its two-factor authentication capabilities, as well as its fundamental communication tools for Last Mile delivery. With this choice, the foundation was laid for an enduring technology and business relationship between the two companies.
The next major milestone in the relationship would be opening up an important new channel for Aramex customer communications, WhatsApp. Aramex was able to use the new WhatsApp Business solution enabled by Nexmo’s Messages API.
“The more mobile we become and the more digital we become, we need to access as many channels as possible to connect with our customers,” said Sleeq. “We need to communicate with them through the apps that they currently use and enjoy. Our integration with Nexmo not only enables us to use WhatsApp, but the Nexmo Messages API also allows us to give our customers the ability to use other preferred communications apps.”
Through Nexmo’s Messages API, customers are able to choose from SMS, MMS, the WhatsApp Business solution, Facebook Messenger, Viber, and more. According to Sleeq, “Instead of having to integrate each channel or communication center separately, Nexmo provides the access we need to use a variety of different communications channels, leaving the choice in the hands of the consumer.”
Sleeq goes on to say that since Nexmo was one of the first providers to offer seamless integration with the WhatsApp Business solution, his team jumped on the opportunity to work with Nexmo as quickly as possible. “Impressively, we were able to deliver our Nexmo-enabled solution in less than one month. Speed-to-market is extremely important to us because the market is highly competitive. I wanted Aramex to be one of the first logistics companies to launch the WhatsApp Business solution globally, and with Nexmo we were able to accomplish this.”
After integrating the WhatsApp Business API into its customer experience in October 2018, Aramex was able to handle phone inquiries on a larger scale as well as schedule deliveries and shipping items faster. Between October 2018 and April 2019, the following results were achieved:
drop in inbound calls
of shipment inquiries processed
Improving Customer Experience and Eliminating Last Mile Inefficiencies
The Aramex-WhatsApp Business solution service, supported by Nexmo, will provide customers with a highly integrated communication and messaging channel. The features Aramex currently offers are “find the nearest Aramex location” and a “track and trace” functionality. Future digital enhancements will include “on-demand and customized customer interaction for shipment notifications”.
Over the last couple of years, Aramex has been focusing its efforts on digitizing and streamlining its processes and minimizing the number of delivery attempts that need to be made. The company is also innovating the way they navigate through various regions and major markets where they deliver shipments. With Nexmo’s Messages API, Aramex is able to enhance its customer service through the WhatsApp Business solution by increasing the speed, accuracy, and efficiency of deliveries.
“The integration with the WhatsApp Business solution through Nexmo’s Messages API enables us to communicate with our customers and receive precise delivery instructions on time and in an efficient manner,” said Sleeq. “This allows us to become more effective on the ground and improve the quality of service. The more channels we are able to offer and the more AI based intelligence we can provide through those channels, the better we’ll be able to enhance our delivery processes and navigate through the Last Mile.
“Nexmo APIs help Aramex ensure that our Last Mile infrastructure becomes more efficient. We will now be able to reach our customers in a variety of convenient ways and minimize the number of delivery attempts made. It’s all about enhancing the customer experience and improving the customer’s journey. Nexmo is an important component in helping us achieve these goals.”
“The more mobile we become and the more digital we become, we need to access as many channels as possible to connect with our customers. We need to communicate with them through the apps that they currently use and enjoy. Our integration with Nexmo not only enables us to offer WhatsApp, but the Nexmo Messages API also allows us to give our customers the ability to use other preferred communications apps.”