January 26, 2022
FedEx and Microsoft announced an expansion to their partnership, introducing a cross-platform “logistics as a service” for retailers, merchants, and brands. According to the press release:
“The companies announced plans to introduce a unique data integration coupling data insights from FedEx with Dynamics 365 Intelligent Order Management to help brands access new information and capabilities to better fulfill, ship, and service customer orders while easily integrating with their existing ecommerce platforms.
This cross-platform approach helps brands deliver modern, high-value experiences directly to their customers including faster, more cost-effective delivery; near real-time delivery status communications; and convenient, frictionless returns with approximately 60,000 drop-off locations and printerless QR codes.
For brands facing increased pressure to build affinity while managing higher order volumes, ensuring cost-effective fulfillment, and reducing costly customer service calls, this new technology brings unprecedented opportunity to leverage existing systems of record, optimize fulfillment, and deliver on their order promises with increased precision, while benefiting from a more complete view of their customer.”
The partnership is a signal the industry continues to seek creative ways to ease the pressures of exploding e-commerce volumes and rising customer expectations coupled with growing challenges associated with the global pandemic, including capacity limitations, rising costs, staff shortages, and supply chain delays (see carrier updates below).
While the new FedEx and Microsoft partnership is a step in the right direction, it lacks one very important component to managing these issues: multi-carrier shipping handled via carrier capacity management. Moving to a multi-carrier shipping network untethers shippers from single carriers and enables them to select the best carrier and service based on cost, capacity availability, and shipper-established business rules.