INEFFICIENT supply chains and miscommunication in air and ocean freight are costing British businesses GBP1.5 billion (US$1.9 billion) a year, according to a study by digital freight forwarder Zencargo.
The study found that processing each shipment takes on average three hours, with 50,000 jobs tied up in procurement, managing suppliers and freight administration, reported London's Air Cargo News.
Red tape and faulty verbal and written communications result in a five per cent inefficiency levy on exporters, while the UK's departure from the European Union could make matters worse as trading with non-EU countries is judged to be 17 per cent less efficient.
The study also claimed that 'simple technology adoption' can deliver five per cent of the annual UK digitisation productivity target.
Zencargo said that the sampled shipments were taken over a four-month period from suppliers who process both air and seafreight.
The sample was taken from a range of industries, across consumer goods, some of which were goods typically air freighted and raw materials.
'Detailed analysis of over 100 shipments from a cross section of UK industries suggests that UK businesses that trade internationally are wasting over three hours on average per individual shipment,' the study said.
'In particular, they found employees are spending time on phone calls and emails to request and funnel data back and forth between their trade partners, the majority of whom already exists in partner systems.
Said Zencargo founding CEU Alex Hersham: 'Technology is the main building block to bridge the productivity gap in the UK. Lack of communication harms productivity in any business, factor in complicated and often outdated supply chains and problems very quickly escalate.'