On August 20th, EPICentre hosted Institute for Border Logistics and Security CEO Laurie Tannous to inform our members and the Windsor community on issues related to cross-border business. The sold-out event was a tremendous success, and will be a recurring event at EPICentre.
To strengthen Canada’s economy especially in Ontario; support additional jobs here in Windsor, and ensure long-term sustainable growth, IBLS main initiative is to promote and support economic-wide strategy expanding into Michigan. Particular success stories included the growth of exports to Canada’s free trade agreement partners, record exports for the motor vehicle industry and agricultural products, and a robust travel and tourism sector. There is still more work to do and that is why we are focusing to do everything to support businesses, farmers, manufacturers, and entrepreneurs as they compete in the global marketplace.
The Institute for Border Logistics and Security is located in the heart southern Ontario’s manufacturing industry. From automotive to agriculture, Windsor residents rely heavily on exporting goods in and around North America. A major benefit is our ability to capitalize on our geographic proximity to the United States. Research conducted by the International Trade Administration (ITA) of the U.S. Department of Commerce has shown that workers in export-intensive manufacturing industries earn, on average, 18 percent more than their counterparts in other manufacturing industries. Academic research has also found that employees in export-intensive service industries earn 15-20 percent more than comparable workers in other service industries. The IBLS is dedicated to ensuring safe, secure and smooth border crossing exchanges in order to boost our economy while simultaneously increasing exports to the United States.
There is a lot to consider when it comes to exports, from lawyers to custom brokers and so on. IBLS is fully equipped and prepared to handle the puzzle that is importing/exporting in order to benefit Windsor’s economy. It is said that firms involved in exporting are found to have higher labor productivity and higher total factor productivity than firms not involved in exporting. Reasons for this can include the fact that firms may become more productive due to the pressure provided by increased competition with foreign firms, therefore, seamless exports will not only increase revenue, but productivity among workers.
The IBLS is the first Institute of its kind to integrate the academic, government, and private industries in order to implement ongoing research and every day practical situations in border crossing. Our combined knowledge and experience will allow us to ensure our local businesses get the most out of their exporting experience which, according to The Canadian Trade Commissioner Service are: Increased Sales, Higher Profit, Reduced Vulnerability -by not solely depending on a single marketplace which may cause a company to suffer from domestic downturn, new knowledge and experience and global and domestic competitiveness. By following our guidelines we encourage you to learn more and stay informed about The Canada Border Services Agency’s (CBSA) eManifest visit the their web site regularly and subscribe to the eManifest RSS news feed to receive updates when they happen.
The following principles which IBLS is striving to achieve can guide “you” in pursuing excellence in client service and ensure the client is at the forefront of everything you do. These principles incorporate research and studies to ensure satisfaction, retention, and loyalty.
- Treat each client in a manner that makes the client feel welcomed, valued and respected.
- Be a valuable asset in helping the client develop and fulfill their objectives.
- Capitalize on the organization’s global network by working and communicating openly as a team.
- Build goodwill and loyalty by delivering for your client.
- Take responsibility for your client’s satisfaction.
- Wow the client and increase client loyalty. Exceed client expectations in both delivery and satisfaction.
In terms of growth strategies, businesses are using mergers and acquisitions as a means to grow their geographic reach and service offerings. Others are becoming more niche-focused on particular regions, service offerings, and/or types of clients, while others are vertically integrated offering broad services.
Managing a good business reputation is a priority. This can be achieved by maintaining client satisfaction through the provision of quality services, having strong business and communication skills, focusing on client relationships, and selecting partners strategically.
Human resource strategies are identified as critical to a success as the industry faces a shortage of experienced highly skilled workers. Effective techniques include coaching and mentoring, promoting from within, choosing projects that will develop employee expertise, and employee ownership.
The effects of labour shortages are also apparent in the industry’s trade performance. Industry exports have not changed significantly for quite a while, and interviewees reported that capacity constraints have been a contributing factor. However, Canada is still a significant net exporter of skills and services and is the fourth largest exporter globally.
Canadian firms may engage in international markets by establishing a permanent local presence. This provides firms with local market intelligence as well as a network of suppliers and customers. Alternatively, Canadian firms may operate in a US and foreign market remotely by establishing effective local partnerships. These partners help to understand and overcome various barriers, such as language, cultural and regulatory differences.
Technology plays an important role in the success of industry. Technology is changing continuously and in order to stay competitive, firms are making use of the latest technology such as 3D modelling. Some firms have developed or acquired unique technologies as a means to differentiate themselves from their competitors. They have dedicated time for employees to explore innovative ideas. Smaller firms can also work with academia to find opportunities for developing innovative techniques or products.
-Information provided by Laurie Tannous, edited by Nicole Anderson