I’ve recently spoken and participated with a few transportation industry events and was reminded of its importance to the supply chain, and so I thought a recap of trends was in order:
- The importance of systems – As supply chains become more complex, leveraging systems becomes more important to optimizing supply chain networks and minimizing transportation costs.
- Consider supply chain disruptions – As supply chain disruptions become commonplace (natural disasters, weather, strikes, etc.), it has become essential to build flexibility and agility into supply chains.
- Alternative fuels – Certainly fuel cost is significant in transportation; thus, selecting the optimal technology is key to success. UPS is expanding its liquefied natural gas vehicle strategy.
- Logistics trending UP – The US Logistics market grew 6% in 2012, led by growth in domestic transportation management according to a study by Armstrong & Associates Inc.
- Panama Canal questions – The Panama Canal expansion (adding a 3rd lane) is scheduled to be completed in 2015 – will it affect the amount of freight going directly to the East Coast? There is much disagreement on this topic.