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Article: How World Courier Mitigates Risk In The Biopharma Supply Chain

By World Courier

The Importance of Risk Mitigation in Today’s Environment
Even prior to the impact of COVID-19, biopharmaceutical logistics was growing in complexity. With the current (and likely future) global disruptions and requirement for continuity of supply, ensuring confidence in your supply chain has never been more critical. 

This makes specialty logistics more than just another cost to manage. Non-standard cargo demands non-standard processes. Investing in high-performance logistics partnerships provides certainty in your supply chain and contributes to risk reduction.

How World Courier Minimizes Risk and Maximizes Shipment Success

But how do you identify and minimize these risks? Looking specifically at air transport for specialty biopharma shipments, there are five key areas to focus on:

• Organizational objectives and stakeholder priorities 
• Temperature control
• Speed of service
• Transport handling (including human error)
• Customs clearance

One of the core foundations for preventing failures in these areas is collaboration. Potential risks should be evaluated and contingency measures implemented to meet objectives and maintain product integrity. 

After initial discussions with our customers, World Courier initiates the ‘okay to send’ procedure.  

Five Areas for Error Mitigated by The ‘Okay to Send’ Procedure 

1. Documentation: We use our regional expertise to ensure all the correct permits and paperwork are in place and valid for each stage of the journey. This prevents delays in service.

2. Conditioning: If packing is not pre-conditioned appropriately, it can cause temperature excursions, costing customers time and money and impacting patients. World Courier ensures a standardized conditioning process for consistent shipment protection. 

3. Route Planning: The most logical lane for passengers might not be the same for biopharma shipments – especially if airports do not have adequate facilities or handling experience. Using our in-depth knowledge of schedules, connections and locations, World Courier will work out an optimal route to deliver to the specific time requirements. 

4. Service Booking: World Courier maintains a carrier-agnostic approach, allowing us to ensure service continuity through alternative flights, routing and entry points in the case of supply chain disruptions. We also block book airfreight in advance in anticipation of customer requirements to prevent any delays to crucial shipments.

5. Customs Delays: Failure to obtain the right permits or paperwork could cause shipments to be held in customs for weeks, or even returned to sender. Extended, unexpected transit times can cause temperature excursions. World Courier has extensive experience and local knowledge, enabling us to effectively navigate customs regulations and minimize delays.

The Journey in Full

This is just a snapshot of the potential risks involved in biopharma logistics, and the processes in place to avoid them. Every single stage, from the receipt of shipment at the consignee’s location, to the loading at the departure airport and replenishment in transit, has to be mapped out and every eventuality accounted for. To give you a sense of the processes involved in creating a journey free from transport incidents, we’ve developed an infographic that depicts each stage. Take a look now to see the level of planning, and contingency planning, required for every shipment. 

Conclusion: It’s All in The Preparation

A customs delay or breakdown of temperature control can have serious consequences for businesses, and more importantly, people’s health. This is logistics that really matters.

Risk identification is vital, but mitigation procedures are often a true measure of a logistics organization’s worth. Because of our on-the-ground local knowledge and expertise in the intricacies of the biopharma supply chain, World Courier excels with high-stakes shipments.

From maintaining temperature-controlled environments to ensuring the right people with the right security clearances are handling the goods, we uphold exceptional standards – which in turn helps us retain a non-excursion rate of 99.9%. Biopharma organizations avoid the cost and complexity of logistics incidents, while patients receive the treatments they need. 

Discover the True Cost of Logistics Incidents

The human impact of excursion management in biopharma logistics is evident. But what are the financial implications? It can often be a challenge to put a dollar value on it. In our latest whitepaper, ‘How To Calculate The Cost Of Excursions In Your Pharmaceutical Supply Chain’, we’ve examined the direct and opportunity costs involved with excursions to uncover the true financial consequences of supply chain failures. Work out what this means for your own organization by reading it today. Download your free copy of the whitepaper now.