Casper Shipping has successfully navigated the challenges of Brexit and the COVID-19 pandemic through a strategic combination of people and technology. Faced with a 2000% increase in customs declarations, Casper Shipping took the initiative to establish Casper Customs, headed up by Nikki Sayer from the Middlesbrough Head Office, as a division focused on customs advisory and consultancy services, providing guidance to businesses in the ever-changing regulatory landscape.
While some other businesses delayed their Brexit plans, Casper Customs embraced a blended approach, investing in both people and technology. They trained individuals with no previous customs experience as Customs Operators, adapting to social distancing measures with remote training methods.
In addition to investing in people, Casper Customs also invested in systems and technology. They collaborated with HMRC-trusted software suppliers ASM Sequoia, to automate customs clearance processes, resulting in a consistent turnaround time of one hour. The company provided a 24/7, 365-day customs service, preparing and delivering a workable plan to ensure business and trade continuity for their customers.
Looking ahead, Casper Customs recognised the need for cross-functional collaboration between their customs and digital teams to achieve further productivity and efficiency gains. They saw the role of customs operatives shifting towards data scientists and analysts rather than traditional data entry clerks. Casper Customs became a pioneer in creating future job opportunities in this evolving landscape.
The development of the automation within Casper Customs moved at such pace that it soon became obvious that a division focused on developing innovative solutions tailoreing to the industry’s needs, needed to be established and Casper Digital was born. Collaborating with partners such as SeerBi (another Teesside born company) a specialist in maritime business intelligence and artificial intelligence, Casper Customs harnessed cutting-edge technologies to better understand their data and streamline workflows. They deployed automated operational analytics and implemented machine learning and natural language processing to offer efficient customer solutions.
Despite the challenges, Casper Customs sees opportunities for customs agents to collaborate with other stakeholders in the trade and technology ecosystem. By staying informed, collaborating effectively, and building solid relationships, customs agents can play a crucial role in ensuring the efficient movement of goods and compliance with regulations. Casper Customs remains committed to digitisation and automation, aiming to enhance internal efficiency and improve service levels for its customer base.