In a candid conversation with Economic Times Global Logistics Show team, Dr. Rakesh Sinha shares the transformational growth and success behind Godrej international expansions and the challenges that is faced by him and his team in creating the brand that it is today. He talks about the current market scenario of Logistics in India and new technological developments in Supply Chain industry. Dr. Rakesh Sinha has decades of diversified and rich experience in Strategic Planning, Information Systems and Marketing. Dr. Sinha has also served on the Board of Governors of the Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts of India (ICFAI) and is actively involved in several key initiatives within the company like E-Commerce and Efficient Consumer Response (ECR). He is also a member of the Academic Council of National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE), Mumbai and the Academic Board of the Welingkar Institute, Mumbai.
Q.1 What is the current market scenario of Logistics sector in India?
Logistics sector has been going through a huge transformation in recent years with new players trying to consolidate and create a market place for goods vehicles. The industry is currently grappling with the implications of GST roll-out expected later this year. GST will open up new opportunities for the sector in terms of consolidating freight and warehousing requirements of various companies. Overall, the scenario looks bright for new innovations in terms of emerging business models.
Q.2 What is the success behind Godrej international expansions?
Our international expansions are part of our 3x3 strategy. We are focused on serving the needs of consumers in emerging markets of Asia, Africa and Latin America. We have also been quite disciplined in terms of the 3 categories (Hair care, Personal care, Home care) we choose to operate in these geographies. Discipline in terms of category & geography choices and focus on local consumer needs have been the key reasons for our success so far. Besides, the local management in each country is empowered to make day-to-day operational choices to best serve the local consumers.
Q.3 Describe a time you worked on a complex project with your team. How did you overcome these challenges?
There have been many complex projects over the years. The ones having the highest impact, however, relate to TOC (Theory of Constraints) implementation in every new country that we expand to. TOC implementation aims at improving agility of our operations by aligning the entire product supply strategy with the ever-changing consumer demand. The main challenge in TOC implementation is to stop depending on sales forecast and instead run the supply chain on the basis of continuous demand signals from the market. It requires a lot of guts to snap the link with forecast and learn new ways of running the entire operations. In some cases, it is indeed a leap of faith. We have managed this challenge by handholding the teams during the transition to get some quick wins in the initial stages itself. Once the team sees substantial improvement in customer service levels as a result of TOC implementation, they become staunch advocates of TOC.
Q.4 What are the new technological developments in Supply Chain industry?
New technologies like Bar coding at shipper level, RFID and IOT have started making inroads in the Supply Chain applications. These help in terms of improved identification, traceability and inventory control processes. We have also seen improved adoption of automation tools like pick-and-place, sorters and robotics in certain industry verticals managing large product assortments and huge order traffic.
Q.5 What kind of transportation logistics and warehouse management solutions that Godrej uses?
Besides using the standard transportation and warehouse solutions, we have recently implemented shipper level bar coding across the entire product portfolio. Each shipper is now uniquely identified through its own serial number. Its movement is traced along the entire journey from the production line till it reaches the customer. We are now able to implement strict inventory control policies like FIFO across all our warehouses, thereby resulting in fresh products to the market and reduced obsolescence.
Q.6 What do you think about platforms such as 'Global Logistics Show' contribution to the growth of the logistics industry in India?
‘Global Logistics Show’ is a unique platform to bring together the latest technologies, innovations, new business models as well as leading thought leaders at one place. I am sure it will help in accelerating growth of the logistics industry in India.