May 17, 2020

Building a brand and sustainable measures

Going Green
Building your Brand
Sustainable Initiatives
Freddie Pierce
2 min
Green and sustainable initiatives in your supply chain goes beyond not doing harm
Greening your business and your supply chain not only does wonders for the environment, but it also helps with your brands image, which can spike sales...

Greening your business and your supply chain not only does wonders for the environment, but it also helps with your brand’s image, which can spike sales.

An interesting blog in The Guardian suggested that companies such as Levi Strauss are able to build impeccable brand images thanks to its green and sustainable measures.

However, joining the green and sustainable initiative goes well beyond not doing harm, as the piece makes the case that companies must “actively do good” to secure a positive image.

Levi Strauss has contract factories that will be supporting programs in line with the UN Millennium Development Goals, a global action plan designed to basically make the world a better place.

The goals include eradicating extreme poverty, eliminating child mortality, fighting disease and ensuring environment sustainability.

Levi last week announced that they were calling for new improvements in factory conditions, saying that “worker’s lives – not just their workplaces – need improving.”

The company has put in place independent verifiers to check out its factories, which the results so far are showing modest gains in improvement.


Cleaning up your supply chain

Going Green: The sustainable supply chain

Sustainable procurement starts with eProcurement

Check out May’s issue of Supply Chain Digital!

Levi had been accused in the past of encouraging (or ignoring) abusive employment practices in its supply chain, which included accusations of low wages and poor factory conditions. Being featured in the negative limelight certainly has changed Levi Strauss as a company, or at the very least, the denim giant figured out that bad press hurts sales.

Heed the word, as the article states that not doing so can have an adverse effect on your business (Think WalMart Watch and Exxpose Exxon).

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Jun 15, 2021

FedEx is Reshaping Last Mile with Autonomous Vehicles

3 min
FedEx is expanding a trial of autonomous vehicles in its last-mile logistics process with partner Nuro, including multi-stop and appointment deliveries

FedEx is embarking on an expanded test of autonomous, driver-less delivery vehicles to develop its last-mile logistics. 

The US logistics firm piloted autonomous vehicles from Nuro in April this year, and the pair will now explore that further in a multi-year partnership. Cosimo Leipold, Nuro’s head of partnerships, said the collaboration "will enable innovative, industry-first product offerings that will better everyday life and help make communities safer and greener". 

FedEx will explore a variety of on-road use cases for the autonomous fleet, including multi-stop and appointment-based deliveries, going beyond more traditional applications of the technology in single-route movement of goods from A-B. Exponential growth in ecommerce is spurring its broader experimentation in new autonomy solutions, Fed-Ex says, both in-warehouse and on-road. 

“FedEx was built on innovation, and it continues to be an integral part of our culture and business strategy,” said Rebecca Yeung, Vice President, Advanced Technology and Innovation, FedEx Corporation. “We are excited to collaborate with an industry leader like Nuro as we continue to explore the use of autonomous technologies within our operations.”


The changing role of couriers 

Unlike structured delivery networks, operating under long-term partnerships and contracts, agility is where couriers deliver true value - and their ability to deftly solve last-mile fulfilment has most acutely been felt during the pandemic. For the billions of people around the world forced to stay at home to protect themselves and their communities from the spreading COVID-19 virus, couriers have been a constant. They may have been the only knock at the door some people experienced for weeks or months at a time. 

But the last-mile has been uprooted by a boom in ecommerce, a shift that has been most apparent in the UK, US, China and Japan, according to the Global Parcel Delivery Market Insight Report 2021 by Apex Insight. These are markets with dominant economies and populations used to running their lives with a tap of a screen or double-click of a mouse. 

“Getting last mile delivery right has long been a challenge for retailers,” says Kees Jacobs, Vice President, Consumer Goods and Retail at Capgemini. “In 2019, 97% of retail organisations felt their last-mile delivery models were not sustainable for full-scale implementation across all locations. Despite increasing demand from customers, companies were struggling to make the last mile profitable and efficient.”

Jacobs says that the pandemic alleviated some of these stresses in the short term. With no other option, consumers were understanding and tolerant, if not entirely happy, with longer delivery times and less transparent tracking. “But, as extremely high delivery demand continues to be normal, customers will expect brands to contract their delivery times,” he adds. 

Last mile's role in ESG

Demand and volume weren’t the only things that have changed during the pandemic - businesses looked closer to home and as a result became more sustainable. Bricks and mortar stores were transformed from mini-showrooms to quasi-fulfilment centres. Online retailers and other businesses sought local solutions to ship more faster. In densely populated London, UK alone, Accenture found that delivery van emissions dropped by 17%, while Chicago, USA and Sydney, Australia saw similar emissions savings. 

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