Logistics firms strengthen workforce to tackle the growing e-commerce demand


As the outbreak of the pandemic pushes the brick and mortar to the back seat and accelerates the demand for shipment and delivery services by pushing online shopping to top gear, many logistics companies strengthen their workforce by hiring tens of thousands of people in recent months and plan to employ more people.

The third-party logistics (3PL) companies such as Ecom Express, Shadowfax, XpressBees have been on a hiring spree across functions, including delivery partners, in recent months.

Shadowfax, in the last few months, has onboarded about 30,000 delivery partners per month and is expanding its operations owing to the spike in growth.

The logistics provider plans to further onboard another 100,000 delivery partners to its network in the coming months.
Other 3PL providers have also been expanding their workforce. In Recent times, Ecom Express has hired over 16,000 people this year, while Xpressbees has added 4,000-5,000 people in the past few months, and Shiprocket hired 539 employees in the January-March quarter.

As the pandemic fast forwards, the shift from traditional to online sales, among all the benefits it has also brought a pocket full of challenges. The increased demand along with the pandemic curbs has indeed made it challenging for the companies to reach their consumer while maintaining the same speed and reliability in deliveries.

According to a recent report by consulting firm RedSeer, third-party logistics players, which currently account for 0.85 billion e-commerce shipments in the country out of overall 3 billion shipments (in 2020), are expected to fulfill 3 billion shipments by 2024.

Companies are seen aggressively increasing their horizons of operations and deepening their reach to tier III and beyond towns as well.

Apart from 3PL players, E-commerce companies have also been expanding their workforce to ensure uninterrupted transportation of essentials across the nation.

While the acceleration in the hiring of the workforce by the 3PL players is attributed to the increased demand, other reasons like reverse migration and illness of staff have also steered the process.

Flipkart, for instance, inducted 23,000 employees in the last three months to keep up with the heightened demand for e-commerce services across the country. Others such as BigBasket, Grofers also have ramped up hiring in recent months.

In these times many retail, FMCG, consumer durables companies have been taking the direct-to-consumer route as social distancing norms and the lockdown continues to impact the offline channels. Companies such as Marico, ITC, Emami, Shoppers Stop have been pushing their D2C channels in the wake of the pandemic.

The trend of online and D2C channels is expected to sustain even post the pandemic indicating an exponential growth for the Indian e-commerce segment. RedSeer report says, E-commerce shipments in the country, are slated to grow four times to 12 billion by 2024.

Other factors such as the expansion of e-commerce to tier II and beyond cities, and growth of new segments as demand-side are the drivers of this surge. E-commerce is expected to grow to up to $140 billion by 2025, as per the consulting firm.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *