David Lewis (pictured right) and his business partner Mike Hosking run the Cargocall franchise in Swansea South Wales and on this page David provides a snapshot of a typical day in the life of their Cargocall business:
8.30am – I start the day by checking emails for overnight responses from our US and Chinese agents concerning air and sea freight costs for one of our customers. I like to respond early with our quotation to the customer so they have everything they need as soon as they arrive in the office. There are other emails to attend to so these are also answered by 9am. I also check all current bookings to ensure things are running to plan.
9.50am – Good news, two of our quotations from a couple of days ago have been confirmed as bookings so I begin contacting our suppliers to begin the shipping process. One of these items is a 40ft container to Singapore and the other is for several pallets to Moscow. Good communication with our customers is paramount so I will be confirming all collection times etc and arranging any export documents.
10am – Mike is just going into an appointment with a pharmaceutical exporter who is shipping goods between Italy and the USA. It’s a complicated logistics requirement needing temperature control but we have a solution and a proposal to present.
10.25am – A couple of requests for quotations have been emailed to us – one for a 40ft container to Dubai, the other a very large airfreight shipment to South Africa. I call the Cargocall support team for some advice on the airfreight shipment. They always provide a great service in guiding us on the technical issues and also ensure we get the best deal. Having this support is invaluable.
11.40am – My quotes are now up to date and I check and follow up on the earlier bookings to ensure all those involved are aware of times/dates etc. In between all these jobs we take calls from customers and suppliers.
12.30pm – Time for a spot of lunch. I always try and take a proper lunch break – it’s good practice to make sure you’re recharged for the afternoon. If I’m out of the office, Cargocall’s head office can take calls and also keep track of any shipments via our in-house system.
1.30pm – I return to my desk, where I have a couple of messages from Cargocall head office to attend to and a few more emails to answer before dealing with some invoices. I like the fact that Cargocall franchise owners have control over the invoicing process because I can be absolutely certain the invoices are correct and I know exactly what’s going on with my business.
2.45pm – I have three bookings to make for some small courier parcels being imported from China, a regular customer who has come to rely on Cargocall for much of their shipping.
3pm – Mike is on his third appointment of the day. This time it’s an engineering components company, which ships worldwide. We have a tariff and service that suits their needs. They have given us trial shipments, which have all gone well so this meeting should be the ‘clincher’.
3.30pm – When I’ve got time I like to call a few prospects and give them an introduction to Cargocall. It’s always good to keep the new contacts coming through and it’s interesting to learn what companies are importing or exporting and how we might help.
4.30pm – I begin planning for tomorrow’s tasks, making sure job files are up to date and that I have the various documents from customers. I also take the time to make a few payments to suppliers. As always between these tasks there are emails to answer as well as the phone. It’s busy but that’s how I like it.
5.15pm – I have a few emails to send to overseas agents in Asia and the US – due to the time difference they will no doubt have answers for me tomorrow when we start all over again.