24 Nov 2015

RESEARCH: Fair and Responsible Logistics - A DHL perspective on how to create lasting competitive advantage


DHL has issued a new study titled 'Fair and Responsible Logistics', reporting on a trend that is transforming the way businesses operate by ensuring profits grow hand in hand with sustainability, and value creation is shared by all stakeholders. The report has been developed by the DHL Trend Research team as an on-going initiative within Deutsche Post DHL Group to accelerate sustainability and responsibility in the logistics industry.

In the report, the key drivers of the fairness and responsibility transformation are analyzed, most importantly the growing expectations of consumers to 'go fair'. It also highlights that while many companies today are relying on digitalization and new technologies as key sources of business rejuvenation, they should not overlook the movement toward fair and responsible business as this is becoming an important source of future growth and lasting competitive advantage.

The report describes 15 potential use cases to show how logistics companies can facilitate the circular economy and enable fair access, production and trade. From these potential use cases, DHL plans to develop proofs of concept to accelerate the drive towards fair and responsible logistics.

Logistics can lead the fairness and responsibility transformation
In today's climate, ensuring a sustainable future is proving more challenging than ever before, with mass production and consumption causing imbalances in global societies and the environment. An underlying theme in the report is that 'doing well comes from doing good'. By adopting this approach, logistics can leverage its position in managing global trade networks and supply chains to also accelerate fair and responsible business in other industries.

"We see a growing demand for fair and responsible business practices from all stakeholders, and we believe logistics can accelerate the adoption of this trend", explains Dr. Markus Kückelhaus, Vice President Innovation and Trend Research, DHL Customer Solutions and Innovation. "Logistics is a network business with a global reach that can play a key role in helping businesses to 'go fair' and in improving transparency across the entire supply chain. By placing fair and responsible logistics at the core of our own business, new revenue streams can be generated, as well as new social and environmental value for all stakeholders."

Logistics providers for example, can establish recycling-friendly warehouses and trucks that provide the infrastructure for both logistics and recycling to increase recycling volumes and reduce waste. This use case envisages delivery trucks equipped with flexible interiors that adjust during delivery; the section for delivery reduces as parcels are offloaded and the collection area increases as recyclables are collected on the return journey.

Fair and responsible packaging solutions can help to cope with burgeoning parcel volumes. These would utilize bio-degradable and other eco-friendly materials that can be composted in gardens after delivery. A second innovation is "logistics unverpackt", a concept that completely eliminates the need for online delivery packaging; items would be delivered in reusable containers, achieving a zero-waste approach.

A further example aims to propel fair production and trade. It proposes that logistics providers leverage their global reach and expertise to support companies in mapping out complex end-to-end supply chains. This information can then be used to establish transparency and to expose areas where there are risks and opportunities for fair and responsible business.





           Circular Economy     Industry 4.0     Blockchain 

     Internet of Things     Omni Channel 

Join us on

News & Trends

Last update 5 Jan 2021
Operating conditions improve at fastest pace since September 2014
   Source: Markit US Manufacturing PMI   -  IHS Markit
United States 

Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals

Maximum safety and reliability and reducing the costs for our customers at the same time: we are able to offer the chemical industry an extensive range of chemical logistics services that hardly any other logistics specialist can match. It is our goal to harmonise our services with your specifications in s...

Five 2021 technology trends for the food & beverage industry

Food and beverage companies faced a pivotal year in 2020 as the effects of the coronavirus pandemic forced businesses to reevaluate their supply chain and operations strategy. To combat the challenges of supply chain ...


Erema: Gaining a competitive edge through preferential exports

Erema, an Austrian manufacturer of recycling systems, uses AEB software to accelerate the proper classification of its components, manage supplier’s declarations, and ensure compliance in its exports. Erema ship...

Five steps to cost justify a warehouse management system in today's omni-channel world

In the past five years, the rapidly emerging omni-channel marketplace has impacted warehousing operations resulting in a need for systems with increased capabilities and flexibility that are adaptable, configurable, a...

International Agenda