Northeast Asia: ISO certification is taking huge steps forward

Hong Kong with three offices including warehousing marks important milestone in roll-out project.

More and more of a. hartrodt's offices in Northeast Asia can prove in black and white that they have an effective quality management system. In October, all three operative Hong Kong offices received ISO 9001 certification for various forwarding services – international general cargo, food & beverage logistics, and local warehousing logistics. Crystal Lam, General Manager Operations Northeast Asia at a. hartrodt in Hong Kong, is leading the extensive project in the region. "I have to ensure that we get the qualifications in the specified time frame and are able to meet the ISO requirements", she outlines her job.

More sites certified in China and South Korea

Crystal Lam, who has years of experience with ISO requirements and procedures, in October and November also obtained ISO certifications for the Chinese sites in Shanghai, Shenzhen, Qingdao and Tianjin, as well as in Busan and Seoul in South Korea. In view of the competition and the global economic crisis, this brings decisive competitive advantages, according to her: "Nowadays, global customers in particular expect their partner to be ISO-qualified."

In Hong Kong, a. hartrodt covers the whole transport chain

"The certification confirms for customers that our offices achieve standards for handling business," Crystal Lam explains. In Hong Kong, she spent almost six months with the department heads to cover all the requirements. A challenge meant "standardizing rules and policies" as well as monitoring the teams "to ensure we were following the ISO rules as well". This was complex in Hong Kong because a. hartrodt covers the whole transport chain there, including warehousing, pick & pack and delivery. Due to the special customs status, e-commerce with local distribution at B2C level has also been established as a business.

At the end of the year, Crystal Lam expects ISO 9001 certification in Xiamen in mid December. In February 2024, it is set to be ready in Taiwan and in March 2024, she is preparing Japan with offices in Tokyo and Osaka.