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How OCEANAIR is upgrading its technology and taking care of its employees to give its customers the best possible experience.
Exceptional customer service without exceptions. Any company that could offer you a service or product under this motto would have a customer for life. OCEANAIR, an international transportation company based out of Boston, has been in business for over 30 years and sends a clear message to its clients with its longevity.
“We provide tailored solutions to our customers, something that sets us apart from the big three logistics companies,” shared Matt Kaplan, General Manager. “We’re one of the largest independent logistics businesses in the region, and yet we still have a flat level of management. OCEANAIR is flexible in ways other companies just can’t be.”
The company has three distinct divisions to its logistics business: its core business of dry cargo, a perishable unit that addresses foodstuffs, and a pharmaceutical-geared division. Each is very different from the next, with endless challenges and variables. However, OCEANAIR has invested in its facilities, its people, and its company as a whole to meet the goals of its customers.
Even from the beginning of its three-decade history, OCEANAIR has been offering technology on the export side of its business that no one else could. The company started as an air export company, and evolved and grew as new opportunities presented themselves.
The company’s new technology is called TOD (Tracking OCEANAIR Data) and its implementation began in trial phases last fall.
It addresses one big demand that comes up in most customer service situations: clients want clear supply chain visibility and also an observable picture of the financial impact of the supply chain.
“We never stop looking for new technology,” said Kaplan. “Our recent investments in tech have been based on customer demand and address upgrades in pricing and estimating transit time. This way, we can provide the client with new ways, like through the client portal, to get data and use it in real time.”
The industry is driving the changes and upgrades in technology as well. With U.S. Customs putting in new systems, like the Automated Commercial Environment platform, individual carriers are having to change the way they've done things for years. OCEANAIR is seeing influences for change beyond the desires of its customers.
“Technology is the future for us as a company and for the industry,” Tim Dooner, Director of Business Development, shared. “New generations are making Boston one of the top cityfor startups in this country. Their demand for access to this technology is what will shape our future.”
As the competition begins to embrace new tech platforms such as client portals like the one OCEANAIR uses, the company is committed to staying ahead of the curve by entering the data capture and share phase of their business before others in the marketplace. This is allowing customers to access their data and information faster and in more ways (like on mobile devices) than ever before.
“All companies in this business use the same types of ships and planes,” Kaplan shared. “So the difference makers have to come from somewhere else. Customers are looking for a solution-driven approach rather than a B2B transaction. We build our solutions around customers’ needs.”
The brand and customers both benefit from the high-tech solutions, but as Paul Rawate, Digital Marketing Manager shared, the brand is truly built through OCEANAIR’s employees. The goal in-house is to develop a culture all members of staff can buy into, so customer’s needs and wants can be satisfied by the company as a team.
“It’s very much a team concept instead of a silo concept at OCEANAIR,” said Kaplan. “People are the biggest commodity in this industry. It’s one of our biggest challenges to finding good people to bring on.”
Industry connections, college interns, and hiring people out of college have led to the stellar workforce at OCEANAIR, but there are very few transportation programs at the university level. Luckily, when this company hires, it often hires for life.
“We retain people for a really long time, decades even. And we continue to make changes internally—like moving from an assembly line way of completing orders to a door-to-door system for our teams—that endear our employees to the brand.”
The brand saw the need to service customers in the best possible way. So now, when someone is assigned a shipment, they oversee it from start to finish.
“Passion is what sets you apart as leaders,” said Ed Kaplan, CEO. “We employ the best—people who are passionate and self-motivated.”
“This is a family-owned business in many ways,” Paul Falewicz, CFO shared. “The feedback from our customers has always been that they don’t feel like a customer, they feel like part of the OCEANAIR family.”
OCEANAIR is the global leader in international transportation logistics. As one of the largest independent service providers and freight forwarders in New England, OCEANAIR's extensive network and global reach delivers value in all aspects of the supply chain regardless of size, weight, or location.
Whether your needs are air or ocean freight, perishables or pharmaceuticals, export compliance and customs brokerage, you can trust OCEANAIR.
186A Lee Burbank Highway
Revere, MA 02151