In August of 2011, Dean Wrigley founded Freight Assist Australia. A year later, the company officially opened for business and started operating out of a shared warehouse facility located in Altona North. Since then, the company has experienced significant growth and adapted its operations to suit its needs accordingly. In fact, Dean says that the company’s revenue has doubled in the last three years and all future projections look equally promising.
As a startup, Freight Assist has adopted an aggressive stance that aims to solidify its place in the market. For instance, moving into a shared depot upon commencement in 2013 was purely a financial decision. Of course, the company was also able to move into an independent depot a mere year later due to its considerable growth during that period.
Metropolitan and interstate transports
Freight Assist offers a variety of different services to its clients, its core business being interstate LTL Palletised freight and full-load consignments offering both express and general service to each state daily. The company also offers a wide range of additional services including warehousing and distribution, metropolitan, regional transport services to serve a wide clientele.
For national transport solutions, the company provides a national interstate and intrastate Express and General freight distribution network which offers door-to-door delivery services on various goods. Anyone that gets in business with Freight Assist instantly knows that the company takes care of every aspect of its business. Its trucks are new, well-maintained, and always clean. Its staff is highly experienced in the sector and properly certified and trained to handle a variety of circumstances. Furthermore, every single piece of equipment is tagged with a GPS so that nothing ever gets lost and detailed records can always be kept.
The transportation of dangerous goods is another area which Freight Assist excels at. This part of the business grew out of a specific demand as several clients required the transportation of dangerous goods. The company responded quickly and efficiently with a detailed and safe plan that ensures all dangerous goods are handled correctly. Freight Assist puts administrative staff and drivers through a tailored dangerous goods awareness course and both local and interstate drivers hold the appropriate licenses required for such transports.
Having everything in control
Keeping track of everything that happens within the company is another important part of the business. Freight Assist is extremely careful in keeping detailed logs of everything that goes through their hands so that the clients can always rest easy knowing that their products are safe. The management system allows the company to maintain a high level of detail and the trained staff does not let anything slip away from the system.
Developing great relationships with clients
Though a single recipe for success is virtually impossible, Freight Assist has a few very clear goals, objectives, and corporate ideals that have contributed to its significant growth and great reputation over the years. Dean has a lot of experience in the sector as he has been involved with the transportation industry for years even before he founded Freight Assist. In fact, a considerable portion of his current clients have actually followed him over, once again confirming that building trusting relationships with customers is always beneficial.
In fact, Dean places a huge emphasis in customer and supplier relationships.
“Without customers you can’t provide a service and without the service you can’t retain customers”, he rightfully says.
For Freight Assist, this idea lives at the core of the business. Each person that the company interacts with is treated with respect because a working relationship is vital in every aspect of the business. The agents that the company uses, for instance, maintain a great relationship with Freight Assist because they know that it works both ways. When both sides reap the benefits of a great business then it’s only reasonable to assume that both sides will treat each other with trust and integrity. Professional courtesy is an art that has not been lost yet and companies like Freight Assist prove it every day.
And as far as clients are concerned, this philosophy becomes even more apparent. Everything starts with being professional. When Freight Assist makes a claim, such as promising delivery on a certain time, clients expect it to be fulfilled to the letter. If something goes wrong and the company cannot actually deliver, communication is key. Clients understand that the world is not error-free so keeping everyone up-to-date is crucial. In fact, Dean believes that these two aspects have largely contributed to the success of his business.
“One of the things that has contributed to our success is that we deliver on our promises. We sell a service and make sure that our customers can receive that service. More importantly, if there is a delay in transit times for whatever reason which may compromise delivery deadlines, our customers are notified immediately the next morning. Although customers are understanding and obliging, sometimes we will go above and beyond and make arrangement to ensure time critical deliveries are maintained where necessary, maintaining communication is a big part of our business as well as relationships with clients”, suggests Dean.
Facing challenges with great staff
Of course, the staff plays a very important role here. Almost everyone working for Freight Assist is closely related to Dean, either through family or friendly bonds. This business requires people who care about what they do and the company that they work for. Everyone is a professional but they also maintain a sense of community. Standards of ethics have to be maintained and everyone is always on the same page to make sure that the business is operating as smoothly as possible without any hiccups that can be easily avoided.
After all, the transportation industry already faces enough real challenges without adding any unnecessary complications in the mix. As Dean explains it, the regulations of the trade are often contradictory and hinder progress. For instance, companies are encouraged to employ people yet are also penalized for it with increased taxes such as payroll Tax. Work-cover premium charges at the highest rates for our industry and although there are various fees associated specifically with the freight industry, there’s little aid in helping startup businesses get up and running. Dean commented on the fact that his company was fortunate enough to overcome these obstacles and break through the barriers to be financially sound in a very short time.
Growing without compromising
As for the future, Dean is adamant that growing the business should not compromise the quality of their services. He wants to continue the company’s growth but not when it could affect their existing customers.
“One of the important aspects is growth. For the last two years, there’s been an average of 25% growth which is quite significant. I would like to continue along those lines but I don’t want to go to a point where we compromise our existing business. The objective is to keep growing autonomously”, says Dean.
This includes looking after the customers, the staff, and the equipment and, of course introducing new things as required. Another aspect according to Dean is generating new leads and introducing new customers without losing current ones who are helpful to the business as a whole. With such clear ideals and well-defined objectives in sight, there’s no doubt that Freight Assist is looking at a bright future indeed objectives in sight, there’s no doubt that Freight Assist is looking at a bright future indeed.
AT A GLANCE
WHO: Freight Assist Australia
WHAT: Transportation, warehousing and distribution services in covering both metropolitan and interstate freight.
WHERE: B8 / 63 – 69 Pipe Road, Laverton North, VIC 3026