Skip to main content Skip to Footer


Rethinking customs solutions for a changing world

Learn the five must dos to avoid extinction.


Trade, the lifeblood of the global economy, is rapidly evolving. Volume is set to double over the next decade, traditional trade routes are shifting, and with the onset of digital trade—the very concepts of borders and goods are changing.

To survive and thrive, customs agencies will need to change their core operations and follow these five must dos:

  1. Go digital

  2. Predict future behavior

  3. Redesign processes

  4. Optimize revenue streams

  5. Develop a more dynamic workforce

Doing so will help them facilitate the legitimate trade of goods and digital services, limit criminal activity, adapt to changing legislation, and improve the overall effectiveness of their customs solutions— delivering public service for the future.


Go digital
Citizens and traders increasingly expect a seamless, captivating digital experience that is multichannel, mobile and always accessible.

Predict future behavior
Reacting to criminal activity such as terrorism, smuggling and counterfeiting is too costly and no longer enough in the fight to secure borders. With limited resources agencies must use customs solutions to effectively predict and prevent potentially illicit behavior and non-compliance.

Redesign processes
Economies rely on the smooth and secure flow of goods and services - each day that goods are delayed in moving from buyer to seller can account for a 1 percent reduction in trade. As trade volume grows and becomes more complex, the tracking and clearing of goods through customs must work seamlessly and the operational processes that support these activities must be able to adapt to this changing world.

Optimize revenue streams
With investment under the microscope, agencies must find money to adapt and effectively serve stakeholders.

Develop a more dynamic workforce
Volumes are up, resources down. Knowledge leakage due to an aging workforce and attrition has taken its toll and endangers organizational performance. The customs workforce threatens to be the weak link in the global supply chain.


Go digital
Agencies need to quickly upgrade legacy technology and customs solutions with systems that support greater collaboration among government agencies and with the private sector.

Predict future behavior
Insight-driven risk-management, powered by predictive analytics and modelling can spot suspicious behavior patterns, flagging potential cases for further investigation and prevention.

Redesign processes
Customs agencies must prepare for the future and design processes with analytics in mind, ensuring they are flexible and able to adapt as their understanding of data and its collection evolve.

Optimize revenue streams
A phased, self-funding approach, with predictive analytics at its core, can help agencies identify untapped pockets of revenue. By starting small—where the return outweighs a modest initial investment—agencies can fund the subsequent phases.

Develop a more dynamic workforce
Customs’ workforce strategies and structures need to put people with the right skills and knowledge on the right career track. Agencies can establish innovative competency driven staffing models to attract and retain the right skill sets.