Competent Couriers

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Competent Couriers's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Competent Couriers is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

www.competentcouriers.com

BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
44 | H2GLENFERN
place to deal with their most material
impacts, they also need to avoid time-
consuming analysis and reporting of
immaterial issues.
We have developed a fifth part
to our offering, designed to help
corporates adapt to this new operating
environment. It will assist them in
understanding the demands of the
asset owners, and the cultural shifts
required to run a more sustainable
business. This involves a full audit of
their primary material ESG issues and
the creation of targets and timelines
for their improvement.
This will enable companies to control
their ESG agenda and ensure that
investors and asset owners have
peace of mind that their investments
remain financially attractive while
simultaneously making the world a
better place.
We hope this will herald a new era
for capitalism; one where companies
grow profitably by developing more
sustainable products and services
that are attractive to consumers by
dint of their reduced impact on our
increasingly fragile environment.
Embracing this change
These are two dramatic changes
to the area in which we operate.
While change can be unsettling for
a business, we always believe in
embracing it, and are very excited
about the business opportunities we
can currently see.
While some elements of MiFID II
legislation might seem detrimental
to the efficient running of our capital
markets, anything that has the
potential to bring corporates and their
shareholders closer together can only
be a positive development.
In addition, if the increasing awareness
of ESG issues moves the agenda from
one of defensive risk management to
the development of more sustainable
business models, then there is still
hope for both the capitalist approach
and the planet we live on.
If we can play even a small role
in helping to facilitate permanent
positive change in these areas, we
will go a long way to fulfilling our
financial and non-financial purpose as
anorganisation.
There is still
hope for both
the capitalist
approach and
the planet
Collaborative
45COMPETENT COURIERS |
BUSINESS SERVICES
Director Sarma Franklyn
Freight arriving
from the hub
A
courier service providing same-day delivery for time-
sensitive packages across London, Competent Couriers
prides itself on a professional, cost-effective and efficient
service. Director Sarma Franklyn tells
The Parliamentary Review
that from the company’s Northolt headquarters, it delivers
competent logistics services to businesses and private clients
alike. With more than 15 years’ experience in the transport and
logistics sector, Sarma explains that his team have their finger
on the pulse when it comes to an ever-changing market.
After five years in the logistics sector, working for some of the biggest household
names, I decided to leave the multinational conglomerates in late 2014 and go it
alone, taking with me the invaluable experience and knowledge that I had acquired
in this time. I established my business with a keen and determined attitude to
provide seamless and efficient transport solutions for local businesses within the
west London area.
After speaking to customers who were fed up of dealing with transport companies
who didn’t understand their businesses’ structure, needs or requirements,
Competent Couriers was founded.
With a fleet of seven vehicles and two warehouse staff, we operate from
northwest London and primarily focus on what is the priority for the customer.
Transporting anything from envelopes containing urgent documents to pallets
for just-in-time supply chains, the business has become an integral part of our
customers’infrastructure.
FACTS ABOUT
COMPETENT COURIERS
»Director: Sarma Franklyn
»Established in 2014
»Based in Northolt
»Services: Courier and logistics
services
»No. of employees: 9
Competent Couriers
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
46 | COMPETENT COURIERS
Small enough to thoroughly engage
with all of our customers on a personal
level, but big enough to accommodate
any request through our network of
trusted and reliable contacts, we have
a reputation for reliability, punctuality
and competitive pricing.
Going green
We operate daily in the Ultra-Low
Emissions Zone in central London
and recently took advantage of the
mayor of London’s scrappage scheme,
which allowed us to trade in three
of our older vehicles and receive a
government grant in order to upgrade
to EURO 6 vehicles, which are far less
polluting. The remaining four vehicles
have recently been updated as well so
the entire fleet is as efficient and clean
as possible.
We are hoping to cut our carbon
footprint further, with the
introduction of electric vehicles, but
are still waiting for manufacturers to
produce vans that have a similar range
to petroleum engines, and that also
can transport the same capacity, as
electric vans are still only available in
smaller models.
We have a great team who work
as one unit. Our seven drivers are
from diverse backgrounds, and
their ages range from early thirties
to late fifties. The environment
around the warehouse is one of
jest and banter. Obviously this is
a place of employment, and the
primary objective is to deliver for
our customers every time on time,
but the atmosphere created is not
an unpleasant or hostile one, and I
strongly believe this is an essential
part of maintaining a productive
workingenvironment.
The difficulty of securing
funding
Funding was a huge challenge in
the initial stage, as with any start-
up business. Originally starting with
just two vans, bought with personal
savings, our relationship with our bank
was essential in order to expand and
acquire more vehicles and equipment
in order to carry out our day-to-
daytasks.
Having no history of accounts, or
previous bank statements, was
particularly difficult in trying to
secure vehicles via hire purchase
or even leasing for a fixed term, as
lenders were not confident that we
were a viable business. After two
years with steady cash flow and
filed accounts, lenders began to
see the value in our business, and
Warehouse
Our relationship
with our bank
was essential in
order to expand
and acquire
more vehicles
and equipment
in order to carry
out our day-to-
day tasks
BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
46 | COMPETENT COURIERS
Small enough to thoroughly engage
with all of our customers on a personal
level, but big enough to accommodate
any request through our network of
trusted and reliable contacts, we have
a reputation for reliability, punctuality
and competitive pricing.
Going green
We operate daily in the Ultra-Low
Emissions Zone in central London
and recently took advantage of the
mayor of London’s scrappage scheme,
which allowed us to trade in three
of our older vehicles and receive a
government grant in order to upgrade
to EURO 6 vehicles, which are far less
polluting. The remaining four vehicles
have recently been updated as well so
the entire fleet is as efficient and clean
as possible.
We are hoping to cut our carbon
footprint further, with the
introduction of electric vehicles, but
are still waiting for manufacturers to
produce vans that have a similar range
to petroleum engines, and that also
can transport the same capacity, as
electric vans are still only available in
smaller models.
We have a great team who work
as one unit. Our seven drivers are
from diverse backgrounds, and
their ages range from early thirties
to late fifties. The environment
around the warehouse is one of
jest and banter. Obviously this is
a place of employment, and the
primary objective is to deliver for
our customers every time on time,
but the atmosphere created is not
an unpleasant or hostile one, and I
strongly believe this is an essential
part of maintaining a productive
workingenvironment.
The difficulty of securing
funding
Funding was a huge challenge in
the initial stage, as with any start-
up business. Originally starting with
just two vans, bought with personal
savings, our relationship with our bank
was essential in order to expand and
acquire more vehicles and equipment
in order to carry out our day-to-
daytasks.
Having no history of accounts, or
previous bank statements, was
particularly difficult in trying to
secure vehicles via hire purchase
or even leasing for a fixed term, as
lenders were not confident that we
were a viable business. After two
years with steady cash flow and
filed accounts, lenders began to
see the value in our business, and
Warehouse
Our relationship
with our bank
was essential in
order to expand
and acquire
more vehicles
and equipment
in order to carry
out our day-to-
day tasks
47COMPETENT COURIERS |
BUSINESS SERVICES
this led us to be able to secure a
loan that helped us with general
running costs as well as to provide
a higher standard of service to our
customers through better equipment.
Finance and leasing companies also
became more welcoming, and three
additional vans were taken out on
lease, which dramatically changed the
number of contracts we were able to
accept. A year later, after continued
steady growth, another two vans
were added, and there is potential
to add one or two more in the
comingmonths.
Although we mainly deliver to the
UK mainland same day or overnight,
we have one eye on Brexit, as it may
have adverse effects for some of our
customers, especially those in the just-
in-time supply chain. Whatever the
outcome, we are positive that we will
continue to provide the kind of service
that we have become known for in the
transport sector.
The next five years
The last five years have been a
fascinating journey. One of the most
important things we have learnt in
business is that customer service and
reliability is paramount. The strength
of your brand in the marketplace,
something which differentiates you
from your competitors, is something
that you cannot purchase. Going
forward, we intend to continue
providing the services that have
served us well to this point, but in
this ever-changing transport space,
the demand for products purchased
online to be delivered same day within
a couple of hours from clicking, either
on a smartphone or on a desktop PC,
is undeniably the direction that the
logistic sector is proceeding towards.
We will be focusing on digital
platforms that will enable our
customers to control their entire
logistical requirements from an
app, therefore having everything
streamlined through a central location
and eliminating the need for excessive
paperwork. This would be particularly
of use to our regular customers who
have recurring orders every day or
week as there would be less admin
involved. We are also looking to
double our fleet in order to service
more customers but also scale the
values that have allowed us to grow
steadily. We are confident that if the
next five years are as productive as
the initial five years, we are on track
to be one of the leading independent
courier companies within the west
Londonarea.
Although we
mainly deliver
to the UK
mainland
same day or
overnight, we
have one eye
on Brexit
Pallets on the way to
customer

www.competentcouriers.com

This article was sponsored by Competent Couriers. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss.

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss

Even by the standards of the day –this has been one of the most exciting and unpredictable years in British politics.

The leadership election we’ve just seen marks a huge moment in our country’s history. This government is taking a decisive new direction, embracing the opportunities of Brexit and preparing our country to flourish outside the EU.

As international trade secretary, I’ll be driving forward work on the free trade agreements that are going to be a priority for the government. Free trade isn’t just an abstract concept bandied around by technocrats. It is crucial for a strong economy and for the ability of families to make ends meet. Free trade benefits people in every part of our country, as British firms export to new markets and people doing the weekly shop have access to a wider choice of goods at lower prices.

The essence of free trade is in the title: freedom. It’s about giving people the power to exchange their goods without heavy government taxation or interference. Commerce and free exchange are the engine room of prosperity and social mobility. I’m determined to tackle the forces who want to hold that back.

One of my priorities is agreeing an exciting new free trade deal with the US, building on the great relationship between our two countries and the Prime Minister and US President. But I’ll also be talking to other partners including New Zealand, Australia and fast-growing Asian markets.

And with the EU too, we want a friendly and constructive relationship, as constitutional equals, and as friends and partners in facing the challenges that lie ahead – a relationship based on a deep free trade agreement. Our country produces some of the world’s most successful exports, and the opportunity to bring these to the rest of the world should make us all excited about the future. It is this excitement, optimism and ambition which I believe will come to define this government.

For too long now, we have been told Britain isn’t big or important enough to survive outside the EU – that we have to accept a deal that reflects our reduced circumstances. I say that’s rubbish. With the right policies in place, we can be the most competitive, free-thinking, prosperous nation on Earth exporting to the world and leading in new developments like AI. To do that, we’ll give the brilliant next generation of entrepreneurs the tools they need to succeed. Since 2015, there has been a staggering 85 per cent rise in the number of businesses set up by 18 to 24 year olds – twice the level set up by the same age group in France and Germany. We’ll help them flourish by championing enterprise, cutting taxes and making regulation flexible and responsive to their needs.

As we do that, we’ll level up and unite all parts of the UK with great transport links, fibre broadband in every home and proper school funding, so everyone shares in our country’s success.

2019 has been the year of brewing economic and political revolution. 2020 will be the year when a revitalised Conservative government turbo charges the economy, boosts prospects for people across the country, and catapults Britain back to the forefront of the world stage.



Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss
Secretary of State for International Development