FLS are very pleased to introduce Lukas Kolar who has joined the FLS international freight team as a Freight Forwarder based in our Silverstone office in the Midlands.
A Czech national and speaking several languages including Slovakian and Russian, Lukas joins the International team, boasting extensive experience in international transport with DHL and CLA. He manages international freight and part of our customs and transit team.
Lukas studied International retail, specialising in eastern logistics, after University went traveling extensively before settling in the UK, holding up in Sydney Australia for a number of years working as an Italian chef specialising in Risotto, which we can’t wait to try!
Formally a professional Ice hockey goalkeeper back in Czech Republic Lukas now lives with his wife and 18-month-old son in Northampton and when he’s time enjoys football and cooking.
Gary Murray, Operations Manager – International said “I’ve been fortunate enough to have worked with Lukas in the past and delighted to have him on-board, he has excellent multimodal experience and an amazing eye for detail which is essential in our new post Brexit import export situation – welcome aboard’.
FLS apprentices are the lifeblood of our business, they bring new enthusiasm, new ideas, and new life to the organisation. We are very committed to carefully looking after them and felt it appropriate in this year’s Apprenticeship Week to give you an update on their success.
Finalist in the Wales Transport Awards, and Apprenticeship Awards as Apprentice of the Year, Ben completed his NVQ in record time and works as a transport account handler for one of Freight Logistics Solutions’ tier-one clients.
FLS is a young company and Ben was the first to complete his apprenticeship in Business Admin, combined with FLS’ own Freight Transport apprentice program. Following his apprenticeship, after just six months working in the Key Account Team, Ben was recognised as a future business leader and entered into the FLS Management Development Programme.
The progression pathway is the same for FLS two graduates also on the program. Staff is given 8 business development projects over 2 years, all based on flexible real-life objectives and their success and progression monitored, mentored and evaluated during this period with the longer-term objective to move successful staff into managerial roles.
Bens first project has been to fully migrate all his carriers onto the FLS Carrier Portal for the digital filing of PODs which has been a great success. So it’s likely Ben will lead the rest of the company on the same ‘Perfect PODs’ project, reducing paper submissions and utilising learnings from his own project and developing his management skills.
Since starting the program Ben has had his responsibilities stepped up and now almost solely looking after his own multimillion pound customer account with great confidence and success.
Ben commented “ I tried college, it wasn’t for me, since the day I started 4 years ago I’ve always had to learn new skills, and that’s how I like it, it is very rewarding. FLS has been fantastic ANYONE will help me at any time, it is a very supportive environment where they push you to do well with the financial incentives to back it up, I’m very happy.”
Emily started with Freight Logistics Solutions nearly four years ago as a junior accounts clerk before progressing through the then newly constructed FLS Supply Chain training program on which she was exposed to senior-level support work as a personal assistant to the Managing Director. She then moved on to Accounts Clerk in the finance team where she completed her NVQ business administration nearly a year ago. After 6 months ‘on the job’ with the finance team, Emily has now started her professional qualifications with the AAT in Advanced Bookkeeping level 3 which she is thoroughly enjoying.
Emily has her first exam soon and will be tested on accruals, taxes and end-of-month accounts. She’ll be then expected to progress through levels 4 and 5 and eventually into a manager’s position in accounts payable within the finance team.
Emily commented. “I love working in the freight transport sector, it’s so interesting with different challenges every day, vie no intention of leaving it,
FLS have been like family to me, they’ve given me so much support in, and outside or work, in fact anytime day or night, they just couldn’t do enough for me, they have really brought me out of my shell, and helped me develop into the very different person I am today, I’m so grateful, there is nothing I would change about my journey and really looking forward to the future and being part of FLS’ growth and success.
NEW SERVICES NEW WEBSITE AT Freight Logistics Solutions
Things have changed a lot over the past year at award-winning welsh-based freight transport and supply chain management company FLS.
The Pandemic arrived and FLS like many other companies focussed on digital working requirements, making sure as many of their processes and administration was as slick and easy to use as possible.
As part of their ongoing commitment to their digital strategy FLS started the year totally focussed on enhancing their online offer and the delivery of their award-nominated Client Portal, which was the final component in their digital freight solution, providing clients with branded, bespoke online spaces to make bookings, view jobs placed and their status, see an archive of monthly jobs and costs, view insight into all freight movements, cost analysis and access completed PODs and customs documentation.
The use of dedicated vehicles increased, smaller express loads increased, and frequency increased. Sectors changed, volumes changed, and customer usage changed. The volume of transport being delivering in sectors such as automotive, hospitality and retail took a dramatic dip, whilst almost simultaneously we saw increased in transport volumes in Industrial Engineering, FMCG, and especially with the NHS, pharma, and Medical and unexpectedly the Construction sector.
Across the board there has been a large uplift it demand at the same time as a reduction in availability from a combination of factors. We have seen the massive rise in domestic deliveries, no new HGV drivers able to enter the sector, many leavers and isolators, and a huge reduction of European carriers entering the UK, both through COVID fears and unattractive port delays, taking their capacity elsewhere. Add to the situation Brexit changes to work process’, new customs and transit requirements has meant the UK freight sector has been under enormous pressure keeping the country running.
To mitigate the drop in availability and price increases FLS focused on securing business resilience by extending its large data base of carriers across Europe the UK, making sure all customers had the maximum amount of vehicle options for their loads. Also, FLS released a new version of their Carrier Portal, where registered van and truck owners can view available loads, quote for them, receive bookings, submit the job status and location, plan routes, maintain fleet profile, post future availability, submit their PODs and even invoice.
Great relationships with carriers are the corner stone of the business. With around 80% of all commercial transport vehicles on the road in a fleet of 20 or less, FLS see this as their primary resource for securing freight partners for their clients, and this has proven safe practice with some major UK hauliers sadly disappearing during the pandemic leaving some manufacturers in some very tight spots.
Groupage services particularly have suffered the most at the start of 2021 with many major European providers suspending these services. With the reduction of available vehicles, shortage of customs agents and complex customs issues demand has been transferring onto dedicated services. So the end of the year saw FLS focusing their expertise on dedicated full vehicle loads, maintaining quality service for customers and deploying its customs service for clients whilst mitigating empty journeys, reducing carbon and offering seamless movement of goods in and out of the UK
Ieuan Rosser, Managing Director at Freight Logistics Solutions said “what a 12 months! We have had huge shifts in our client base which has been exciting, but the enormous pressure of the pandemic, Brexit and the challenges that customs and its restrictions have had, hasn’t made 2020 easy.
We opened a new office in Silverstone, locked down, delivered over 15,000 lines of PPE for the NHS, taken on 9 new members of staff, many to bolster our customs agent service. In November we were the second fasted growing company in Wales for the second year running, and we are on course for a record year, and busting all our targets. I have been delighted with our focus on ‘seamless freight movement’ and with our enhanced digital offer, especially with the success of our Carrier and Client portals. The team has worked hard and shown incredible commitment and perseverance during the most difficult of times.
I am really looking forward to the ‘bounce back’ needed for many of our customers and certainly, vaccination will help us towards the return of face-to-face meetings with clients and carriers.
As with everyone, 2020 changed us and our new website reflects the new slicker, confident, tighter, more digital version of us and I hope you like it.”
FLS are a fantastic team of people, from the top management down. Every member of the team I have had the pleasure to work with has been extremely helpful and has provided a fast effective solution to the requirement I have given them