The Autonomous Port of Lomé by its size and efficiency is among the top 5 transshipment platforms in Africa. A position which makes this port in deep water a hub of the Togolese economy. In 2019 Zouréatou Lassa Traoré, then Minister of Transport, affirmed that the port alone generated 60% of the State’s revenue ‘.
An impressive percentage which obviously involves several economic activities that overlap or complement each other. In a port, the first idea is that ships come and go with imported or exported goods on board. Even if these two stages are the main axes of the port’s activities, everything does not end there at all.
From dockworkers to handling companies, including customs and Ship Chandling, all contribute to the good health of the Port Autonome de Lomé. This article will focus on this last activity which has good press among professionals in the field but which is even less known to the general public. In general, the Ship Chandlers are therefore these entities that take care of the supply of a ship. Following orders, they buy and group together several products in order to deliver them to the ship that will need them. Most of the needs are forecast and the products delivered by these entities to ships can range from necessary for maritime navigation to food and others. Far from being a simple courier activity, the job of General Ship Chandler in Togo has its share of requirements in terms of knowledge. They are technical, but also legal and economic. All this makes Ship Chandling a complex activity, but several companies are doing brilliantly at the Port Autonome de Lomé. In this lot reigns supreme Uni-Commercial which for several years has allowed several boats to sail in peace. A choice that has nothing to do with chance, but rather the very good references that the company has in the field. But how did she achieve such a level of efficiency?
Knowledge of the environment:
As we mentioned above, a General Ship Chandler in Togo is at a crossroads in the maritime domain and must therefore know a minimum about the activities of each other around. This knowledge can very quickly develop into an aptitude which will have the gift of making people understand the needs of the customers who are the boats. The administrative formalities are also not to be neglected because the Ship Chandler is after all an exporter. As deliveries are made to mostly foreign ships which will sail to other ports, they are therefore subject to a specific legal regime. Since it is also a question of supply and then delivery in the field of Ship Chandlering, knowledge in purchasing and stock management is very necessary to carry out the activities. Uni-Commercial’s workforce, which operates at the Autonomous Port of Lomé, is therefore a concentrate of all its skills, making it the best in the field.
One never goes without the other. While mastering your field may be a part of professionalism, the latter casts an even wider net and requires other skills. We may well have theoretical knowledge on the activity we exercise but be lagging behind in the field. Outside of the Ship Chandling area, the land is just as important as the office space. If these two points are met, we will also speak of competence, an aptitude closely linked to professionalism. We should also be very reliable as a company to talk about professionalism and especially in this area where everything must be respected to the letter; schedules and several other requirements. Several other skills come into play when it comes to appointing a Professional Ship Chandler. These are among others integrity, honesty and above all a sense of a job well done. As the company is a collection of people who work for the same goal, it will take a professional leader to instill professionalism in the whole team. At Uni-Commercial, it has become like second nature.
Attentive listening to the customer
In Ship Chandling more than any other activity, listening to the customer is one of the cornerstones. Ships and their movement on water involve a large number of needs. The people in charge of the management of the vessel are therefore best placed to know the details. These needs are the subject of orders which must be fulfilled by the Ship Chandler. In purchasing and supply management, the General Ship Chandler in Togo must therefore ensure that everything is compliant. From the designations to the references of the items ordered, everything must be in conformity to avoid a disappointment which could be fatal. For the order form to be identical to the delivery note, the Ship Chandler must therefore be constantly listening. This listening can also not be limited to the wishes of the customer but also to the work environment to provide an irreproachable service on all points. This quality is no secret for Uni-Commercial’s partners who benefit from it at every opportunity.
This strategy is in line with the knowledge of notions of the environment. The evolution of time is today conditioned by another evolution. That of technology that spins at high speed. The methods and means of yesterday are now obsolete, hence the need for regular upgrading. This applies to all areas but even more to Ship Chandling. The challenge for the Ship Chandler will be to adapt to new discoveries or developments in terms of fittings, for example. It could also be a question of using new means of communication and other innovations for the complete management of activities. A Ship Chandler behind its time is not clearly a priority choice for the fast-moving customer. But if not, it may sound like a head start. In short, you never stop learning and at Uni-Commercial, the staff is constantly being trained.
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