In conversations with customers, "transparency" is a word that frequently comes up, says Arganese. Customers often complain about a lack of transparency. In some cases, this derives from not having enough information. But even when they have sufficient or excessive amounts of data, customers still feel that they lack visibility to critical information that could help them make decisions, Arganese says.
One reason for this lack of transparency is the complexity of supply chain relationships, he says. Few companies use only one provider with simple, one-to-one relationships. Instead they have to deal with multiple providers, creating complex one-to-many relationships. "Such relationships are complicated to manage with a lot of complicated processes to administer and very difficult reporting and invoicing," he says.
The Lead Logistics Provider (LLP) model addresses this problem by taking a customer's one-to-many relationships and effectively converting them into a one-to-one relationship, with the LLP becoming the customer's sole point of contact, Arganese explains. "We manage all of the customer's logistics and transportation providers on their behalf. They decide with whom to work, but we manage and basically create the interfaces with the providers, one of whom typically is DHL Freight. It feels like they are dealing with one company, but in reality they have all the advantages of dealing with many."
DHL recently launched a new LLP service called GreenLink. "We have been doing LLP at DHL since the early 2000s and have developed this business over all regions," he says. "We developed a TMS software called Plato to manage all the complex LLP relationships with carriers and 3PLs on one side and the customer on other side." Consolidating all current and future LLP accounts across the world under the GreenLink umbrella will enable DHL to leverage this infrastructure and the expertise from dozens of customers on three continents, he says.
The name represents savings both in dollars and to the environment. "One of the ways the LLP model saves money for our customers is by optimizing flows so we transport less air and more freight," says Arganese. "It has very good financial effects and also beneficial effects for the environment, so GreenLink is a name that fits well."
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