Participate in the next Q-Rally

Megha Palkar, Assistant Manager, Cargo iQ


Twice a year the Cargo iQ community gathers for a week for Working Groups in some corner of the world where member subject matter experts get into the nitty-gritties of SMAMS (Specifications, Master Operating Plan, Audit, Messaging and Data Exchange, Systems) to bring the air cargo industry to new realms. In the midst of all the sessions, one evening is reserved to celebrate and share members’ success stories from an initiative we like to call the Quality Rally.


Our version of the Q-Rally lacks the muddy roads, but the time-limited element is still very much there. Two or more members with different core businesses, act as drivers and co-drivers, such as forwarders, airlines, ground handlers, trucking companies, and IT companies, and they have six months to work together on an industry challenge, and present the results of their models at the next Working Group meeting.


Member groups work on specific issues at micro levels, track improvements, and once successful, apply the model to all affected areas. The presentations given ensure that other members who were not part of the same initiative do not have to reinvent the wheel and can learn from other teams’ successes and failures. We celebrate with an award ceremony followed by congratulatory drinks.

At the most recent spring Working Group session held in Geneva, Switzerland, forwarder member Kuehne+Nagel took the lead to work with seven airline partners and one IT services provider to improve and analyze shipment coverage and quality of messaging. They isolated the shipments that, for one reason or another, were not measured by Cargo iQ standards and dug deeper to identify root causes and subsequent solutions. In some cases, technical modifications were needed, sometimes taking the form of filling gaps between original company and new acquisitions’ IDs; other times it was simply a matter of constantly monitoring KPIs to identify patterns.


The effort saw an overall improvement of more than 12 percentage points in measurements and some obvious ripple effects. The exercise showed that members are working very hard to improve their quality of service, which becomes evident when more shipments can be measured against targets for a result. The exercise is still ongoing and will continue during the next round.


In the past, other members have worked on specific milestones, such as implementation of Freight on Hand (FOH), which helps analyze how much time it takes for cargo to be processed from the point of receipt from forwarder to ground handler. Some have worked on improving their ‘Notified for Delivery’ (NFD) performance, which is an indicator of the promise a carrier keeps with their customer, the forwarder. Others have worked on maintaining the correct offsets (airline-forwarder agreements on delivery timings) in our system ENCORE, which makes measurement easier and more realistic with updated information.


DB Schenker and Lufthansa Cargo won the previous Q-rally at the end of 2021, with their investigation of mismatches in shipment details when information passes from one party to another.

The conclusion of the June Working Groups has seen a few challenges being accepted by members to present by the next session in November. Cargo iQ would like to invite all its members to come forward and work with their partners on things that matter most to them, and in the process, win a trophy!


The Cargo iQ management team is also working on a Q-Rally project to make monthly reporting timely and accurate, and will collaborate with members by providing and receiving regular feedback.


If you find yourself at our working groups, don’t forget to check out this fun session and, better still, participate!


Story edited by meantime.global