Tag: Oman

DHL Oman: ‘We want to be everybody’s first choice’

As DHL completes 30 years, its Country Operations Manager, Oman, Geoff Walsh explains to OER’s Visvas Paul D Karra the reasons that have made DHL a trusted name for its customers

Can you shed light on some of DHL’s pioneering services?
I think the biggest thing we have pioneered is the use of ease. We are present all over Oman in 16 locations, which includes all the major towns. One of the biggest initiatives in the Middle East is our Import Express, so you can have an account here and request for a collection from Timbuktu or from Sydney. We take care of all the paper work and ensure that you get your shipment. You can have one user account and you can do export, import and even door-to-door freight service.

Since the past couple of years, we are also doing the time definite pre-nine, pre-12. If you want a shipment to be sent to the UAE by 9 am the next day, you pay a small premium and we guarantee to deliver it before 9 am otherwise you get your premium back. So, it gives a scale of prices and scale of services.

How do you view your competitors in Oman?
There are the usual global competitors like Fedex, TNT, UPS, etc, and then the local ones like Aramex, besides other small players. Our advantage lies in our knowledge of Middle East customers because we are here since the last 30 years and that stands us in very good stead. We have to give the best service and best performance consistently. I think that is what separates us. All our competitors get business but if a customer has got something important to be delivered and needs to guarantee it reaches there, they will come to us.

DHL’s logistics chain has acquired a global reputation. What accounts for this?
We have 250 trailers moving around the Middle East and these go into Africa and Europe. Sometimes 10-15 of them pull automotive parts. And then, we charter an aircraft if it is needed. We are also the only company in the Middle East which has an airline of its own. We have a plane based in Bahrain.

And then we have our couriers, they are not just delivery or collection boys. They do the scanning, they know the importance of the shipment and they get to know the customers because of the training we give them. It is a whole package oriented towards the ‘first choice’ motto.

What is your opinion about Oman as a market?
Oman is diversifying from oil to non-oil revenues. This is attracting a lot of investments and the country is growing. We have been a significant cog in the growth. The big multinational companies, like banks and other manufacturers who come into Oman, need infrastructure and DHL can help and support them to get it. Being here and supporting the growth is important. It is what I said about providing solutions. We want to be everywhere and everything for everybody. We want to be everybody’s first choice.

What are your expansion plans in the Sultanate of Oman?
Our investment in Oman is increasing. At the moment I am drawing up the budget plan and I know that what I am going to invest now is more than what has been invested in the last 10 years.

We are going to have a brand new country office in Seeb in the final quarter of 2009. We are looking for a larger warehouse facility in Ghala area. On other locations, we have Express centres where people can just walk into, like a shop. This is what I call the retail strategy. We want it to be easy to use DHL, as easy as walking into a supermarket or a store to buy milk. To be a customer’s first choice, we have to be easy to use, we need to be reliable, and have quality and consistency.

How secure is a parcel sent by DHL?
We do everything to make sure that every shipment is secure. Every shipment is treated exactly the same way. Similarly, all our offices and express centres have CCTVs and all our courier boys are vetted and trained to follow strict security procedures. Therefore, our shipments are as safe as you carry your own luggage on a holiday.

Has there been any major inciden

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