Over the past week, Qantas’ freight division suffered an IT catastrophe that sent cargo operations into disarray.
On September 24th, Qantas attempted to change to a “new, fully integrated cloud-based” management system. However, things did not go according to plan.
The new system was designed to streamline the cargo process; however, the system went into meltdown, with the airline urgently prioritising the movement of human remains and medical supplies. The transport of some perishable items, including flowers and fruit, has been impacted significantly.
A Qantas spokesperson said the staff are working with those customers directly. “We are working around the clock to make sure all outstanding items get where they need to go as quickly as possible,”.
With the IT system down, employees were forced to process shipments manually, which caused backlogs in deliveries at some of the nation’s largest airports including Melbourne, Sydney, and Brisbane.
“We recently experienced an outage during an update to our freight handling system which has led to some delays for customers,” the spokesperson said.
A Qantas spokesperson stated the IT issues were resolved on Tuesday and the domestic backlog had been cleared, but that international deliveries continue to be affected.
“We are working around the clock to make sure all outstanding items get where they need to go as quickly as possible,”. Urgent medical supplies and human remains had been prioritised, the spokesperson said.
“We appreciate this has been really frustrating for customers and we are sorry that this outage impacted them over the past couple of weeks. We’ve been posting regular website updates and getting in touch with customers directly.”
Qantas is one of only three major terminal operators in Australia that handle air freight movement through airports, meaning the system outage has affected roughly 25 per cent of Australia’s inbound airfreight.
Freight forwarders are still encountering significant delays with inbound cargo arriving through Qantas. These delays have resulted in extensive hold-ups in all departments. Some of the issues faced include:
- Extended Waiting Times: Cargo is taking an extended period of time to become available for collection. The collection process is very manual. Drivers are waiting for hours in the queue to check each and every shipment.
- Availability Issues: Some shipments that show as “ready for collection” cannot be located promptly, leading to delays.
- Unprocessed Units: Many units are not being broken down upon arrival. While they may have landed, they remain intact, waiting for processing. There is no specific order in the release of cargo, whether based on arrival dates, loose freight, or unitised freight.
For more information, Qantas has released an update on the delays, which can be found by pressing the link below.
Should you have any further questions or require any additional information please do not hesitate to contact us at Gava Australia.