A large seasonal workforce complicates 3PL compliance with healthcare laws and could mean rate increases for shippers.
Thomas Griffin of DLS Worldwide explains the most important aspects in good vendor management and how manufacturers can deal with increasing regulations and security concerns.
The new de minimis rate allows e-commerce retailers to see faster customs procedures and border clearance, which will accelerate delivery speed.
The booming liquor business has added several layers of complexity to the supply chain with the addition of many new product SKUs. Shippers are using technology, data, and collaboration to keep the supply chain moving efficiently.
From a shipping perspective, manufacturers can best address today’s increasing regulations and demand volatility by outsourcing shipping to a third-party logistics provider.
A look at logistics trends and challenges that affect companies in the chemical industries, and their strategies for dealing with those issues.
Middle East countries show signs of regional collaboration around transportation and logistics; China’s “red supply chain” threatens Taiwanese semiconductor industry; India looks to Korea as both a model and partner for its economic modernization program; U.S. fashion industry supports extension of African Growth & Opportunity Act; Cuba’s Port of Mariel attracts investment from CMA CGM; China looks to replicate U.S. rail freight model
Short-term Highway Trust Fund extension renews call for national transportation strategy; Medical cost inflation and cyber risk are the most prying business concerns; Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach create shared working groups to explore operational efficiencies; GS1 Simple Product Listing creates new standard for e-commerce marketplace
When it came time to face the ACE, HW St. John bet on an automated solution that streamlines processes and deals customers a winning hand.
Mark our words: Legislative and regulatory resolutions could spell trouble for shippers and carriers in 2015.
Smart shippers are already preparing and making changes to their supply chain operations to ensure they will be in compliance with the Food Safety Modernization Act from day one.
To mark SmartWay's 10th anniversary, several shipper partners share their best tactics for getting the most out of the program... Sourcing and procurement functions have become areas of core incompetency says new survey.
The trucking industry faces capacity constraints, but there are solutions available to help shippers minimize the impact.
OSHA issues updates to its Hazard Communication Standard; HP’s Dave Thomas addresses the importance of data quality; Ohio Trucking Association debuts military exhibition class at truck driving competition; Companies fail to use procurement in a strategic way; Shippers planning ahead for labor disruptions.
State of Logistics Report predicts moderate growth for freight industry in 2014; freight brokerage M&A shakes up industry; FMCSA extends comment period for ELD rulemaking; Online consumers willing to pay more for sustainable delivery options; Shippers register growing discontent with parcel carriers and trucking companies; University of Kansas MSB program prepares active-duty military for private sector roles
Cross-border import and export trade between the United States and Canada requires planning and expertise.
Ensuring supply chain security requires that shippers and logistics providers stay one step ahead of thieves.
Big data gathered by materials handling equipment helps warehouse managers improve productivity and safety.
Knowing your global trading partners can help maintain a smooth flow of goods, while ensuring safety and security.
Global dry-bulk commodity trade reveals rate growth, steadying inflation in China; Preparations for 2022 World Cup trigger DC explosion in Qatar; Supplier risk analysis will become more complex as companies expand into new global markets; Pakistani protests force U.S. military drawdown to consider $1 billion airfreight alternative; Asia truck bans taking toll on logistics industry; Africa’s piracy problem shifting to continent’s west coast; Trans-Pacific Partnership pact stalls, 2014 ratification expected; China’s Nicaraguan Canal stirs intrigue; Tesco acquires stake in “Asia’s Amazon”
Shippers must adapt to accommodate federal Hours-of-Service rules affecting the time truck drivers can be on the road.
Today, we face the slow extinction of independent owner-operators. These self-reliant business owners are now dealing with a myriad of regulations that will soon make the owner-operator model impractical, and its survival improbable.
Winter provides a great advantage–time. The hustle and bustle of the holidays is over and colder weather prevails. There’s no better time to hit the books and amp up your knowledge of important logistics and supply chain management issues.
Shippers need to understand the claims process and law since the legal principles are unique to the shipping industry.
Ariens' tailored transportation planning solution from Redwood Logistics has led to efficiency gains, delivery improvements, increased visibility and cost reductions.
To meet the changing needs of today’s manufacturers, third-party logistics (3PL) providers need to distinguish themselves through collaboration and technology investments.
Even when the economy isn’t booming, the supply chain offers numerous opportunities for shippers to increase efficiency, save money and enhance revenues. This story looks at some of the bright spots in transportation, technology, global trade and outsourcing.
Will the coming political change reverse slow economic growth many had anticipated for the next 4 years? Many think so.
As product demand continues to rise, companies in all industries are partnering with third-party logistics (3PL) providers to ensure their products are delivered to customers on time and cost effectively.
A routing guide plays an important role in setting the strategy for carrier selection across a variety of shipments within an organization. Use these tips to get the most out of your routing guide.
Thirty years ago, third-party logistics providers offered mainly rudimentary logistics and warehousing services. Today, however, many 3PLs offer complex solutions that help companies achieve strategic goals.
A closer look at Amazon’s trucking app, Trump’s infrastructure plan may bring much-needed funding, Maersk acquisition of Hamburg Süd faces regulatory hurdles, Congress repeals portion of 34-hour restart requirements, States making progress on FAST Act projects, Foxconn targets U.S. expansion, Self-driving truck makes first successful delivery, Amazon Go cuts check-out lines out of retail process, manufacturers prep for Made in America push, UPS tests artificial intelligence customer service program; Ocean Alliance receives FMC approval
The logistics of trade between the United States and Mexico has changed significantly in the 20-plus years since NAFTA was enacted. There are still issues, most notably border delays and an imbalance of goods flowing north and south, but there are bright spots supported by an influx of foreign direct investment in Mexico, too.
MD Logistics leverages FTZ benefits to provide game changing benefits to its customer base.
While the regulations that govern the movement of goods across borders can (and do) fill volumes, some are of particular importance right now. These include changes to the Harmonized System, revisions to the regulations regarding the export and import of hazardous waste, guidance on voluntary self-disclosures, mandates regarding electronic logging devices, and modifications to Cuba sanctions. This article provides an overview.
Jungheinrich® reach trucks help LeanCor’s mission to advance the world’s supply chains.
Korea Line Acquires Hanjin Asia-to-U.S. business; President-Elect Trump follows through on campaign promises to kill trade deals; London Heathrow gets third runway.
Working with a specialized transportation provider will save you time and headaches while keeping your customers happy and costs down.
Wagner Logistics helps a leading manufacturer of lawn care equipment overcome growing pains.
Food producers, distributors, and retailers need to ensure safe handling procedures are in place to protect the food they handle.
Readers choose between cost and customer service as the most important selection criterion for a carrier or supplier.
Profile of Mike Wagner, CEO of Target Freight Management.
DHL survey gives insight into international trade; Trade growth expected between Canada and United States; Hanjin Shipping shuts down operations in Europe
Working with a single-source third-party logistics provider offers many benefits. Here are tips for choosing a partner with capabilities that fit your company’s needs.
As transit times shift and service areas are updated, customers need a reliable source of data that delivers a standard messaging output that can be easily understood.
Hiring challenges in the supply chain sector include attracting the best talent, developing leaders, and retaining high performers. To solve these issues, employers must step up and build training programs that instill passion, share purpose, provide clear leadership and promotion tracks, are authentic, and ultimately diminish turnover.
Inbound Logistics talks to carriers and third-party logistics (3PL) providers about sure-fire ways to save money on LTL shipments and serves up a list of 18 tips that will help shippers of all types and sizes.
Rick Erickson of U.S. Bank explains how to deal with increasing regulations, demand volatility, and shifting global trade currents.
Complying with big-box retailer requirements isn’t always easy, but it pays off in the result of a cohesive 3PL team, satisfied employees and continued business.
Rising consumer expectations are driving change throughout the supply chain. And there’s no tougher test for meeting increased expectations than Black Friday. The time is now for warehouse managers to examine the three critical success factors in warehouse labor management.
U.S.-Canada cross-border trade continues to be a mutually beneficial partnership between nations with a long history of friendship.
To meet the changing needs of today’s manufacturers, third-party logistics (3PL) providers need to distinguish themselves through collaboration and technology investments.
Emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things, 3-D printing, collaborative robotics, self-driving trucks, drones and the Uberization of deliveries are poised to be disruptive influences on logistics in the coming years.
Denied party screening is of critical importance in shipping and international trade, and essential for minimizing business risk today.
This story examines the secrets behind a successful shipper-3PL relationship, as seen through the eyes of four pairs of successful business partners.
With schools across the country rapidly increasing the use of technology in the classroom, recent graduates entering into the logistics workforce expect similar atmospheres.
Inbound Logistics’ exclusive market research survey on the third-party logistics (3PL) sector reveals new trends and opportunities.
Freight location and status updates, along with advanced predictive analytics capabilities, are making load tracking a valuable tool for shippers, brokers, 3PLs, and carriers
Year after year, the IL 3PL survey reveals the importance of great customer service to shippers.
A successful procurement project or event is all about the right preparation.
Supply chain logistics companies view veterans as a crucial pool of potential employees, and consequently they are using a range of methods to recruit and hire former members of the military for their workforces.
Here are the key facts you need to know about the new Safety of Life at Sea regulation.
Using the best logistics IT available, and partnering with world-class carriers and 3PLs, can help you find a better way towards supply chain success.
As entities responsible for brokering appropriate carrier rates, ensuring accurate quantities of orders and guaranteeing high quality of products, third-party logistics providers are extensions of companies’ brands.
Inbound Logistics editor lists six cool things she learned (or just realized anew) as she edited the annual 3PL issue.
Brexit shakes up global supply chain; Amazon invests $3 billion in India; Hyperloop targets Russia as site for science fiction-like transit tube; Australian truckies want better working conditions; Despite the best-laid plans by multinational companies to establish trade compliance, there’s a costly risk gap between knowing and doing that may lead to fines and incarceration.
Industry expertise is the most impactful way to positively affect customer service requirements.
As the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals become more prevalent, the logistics industry will reap the benefits of increased, streamlined trade.
When inclement weather affects visibility or traction, commercial drivers must reduce speed and cease operations when those conditions become sufficiently dangerous.
As the chemical industry continues to grow, shippers and their service partners work hard to keep product moving, trouble-free.
Nikola Motor Company announces electric class-8 semi truck; FASTLANE grants aim to improve nation’s infrastructure; In spite of rate-driven financial gains for carriers, utilization drop is evident in most recent transportation industry analysis
Even though the rollout of the Automated Commercial Environment has had a bevy of delays, quicker and easier data access will benefit government agencies and the trading industry.
Communication and transparency are key to being a good partner to your clients. Use this advice to effectively communicate with customers.
This article provides simple but important actions a motor carrier can take to put itself in a position to avoid a jury verdict potentially based on an improper standard or misleading evidence.
The anticipated shifts in the European regulatory landscape introduce new tensions along the world’s supply chains. The establishment of cross-functional teams inside a company’s management structure can help an integrated strategy to succeed.
This story looks at ways in which 3PLs help small and midsize companies implement and take full advantage of information technology.
Working with a third-party logistics partner who also offers foreign trade zones can provide big benefits in the right scenarios.
Inbound Logistics explores the rules and regulations most likely to impact shippers in 2016.
Smart, connected cities are closer than you think; Inevitable minimum wage hike has supply chain implications
Transparency and communication are key in the RFP process to develop a true and lasting partnership with a 3PL provider.
The uncertainty in today’s global economies has a huge impact on how supply chain professionals manage global supply chains.
The solution to understanding the 49 Code of Federal Regulations is to take them step-by-step.
From well-designed redundancies across intermodal shipping methods to creative solutions when the unexpected happens, Georgia’s logistics industry is positioned to help shippers connect, compete, and grow.
A solid foundation of supply chain experience and education is just the beginning. Supply chain practitioners need to periodically update their knowledge as well. Here’s how companies are getting with the program— customizing curriculums and encouraging employees to enroll in executive education programs.
Companies that work with third-party logistics providers such as Penske Logistics get to share the pain when unexpected situations arise.
As a new driver coercion rule goes into effect, the need for communication with drivers is greater than ever.
With so many choices available, varying freight, and small package shipping needs, the 3PL service offering needs to be about more than the transaction.
Why Inbound Logistics decided to re-publish Strikepoint, a fictional logistics novella originally published in 2001.
This story follows a sleeper team for YRC freight as the two drivers make a run of approximately 22 hours from the Chicago area to Denver.
As shippers evaluate existing, merged, or new 3PL providers, they should also be aware of their own processes and approach to vendor relationships and choose partners that best align with their strategies and needs.
Shippers should consider partial shipping when looking for faster transit times, less handling, and a more cost-effective solution.
Logistics has evolved into a strategic business concern, driving enterprises to seek third-party logistics (3PL) providers with multi-modal capabilities for complete end-to-end integration.
Manufacturers are going back to the drawing board to rethink their temperature-controlled supply chains.
It is critical that 3PLs take a hard look at operations to determine areas for cost reduction, productivity and efficiency improvements, and opportunities for new service offerings and revenue streams.
Some expert advice to help shippers and carriers navigate the upcoming Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).
When choosing a transportation management system, it’s important to ensure it will meet all of your requirements.
It's important to stay up to date on supply chain and logistics developments. Here's a list of books on wide ranging topics.
It is important to be vigilant about new regulations and interpretations that effect the industry and impacts business.
By focusing on the frontline workforce—the biggest component to delivering the perfect order—companies can uncover hidden costs, maximize performance, and manage compliance risk.
How milk and other dairy products moo-ve from tens of thousands of cows to store shelves across the country - with udder efficiency.
One way a manufacturer can mitigate the effects of increasing regulations and demand volatility is by working with a third-party logistics provider with a leveraged platform.
Given the importance of free trade, it is important to know the positive effects of free trade and the Trans-Pacific Partnership on the U.S. economy.
Bobby Harris, President and CEO of BlueGrace Logistics, discusses the talent gap, entrepreneurship, the importance of keeping employees happy, and more.
The Globally Harmonized System of Classification (GHS), which ensures hazardous materials are safely produced, used, and disposed of, continues to evolve. Supply chain management technology tools remain a priority. Third-party logistics providers project future growth. St. Louis, Mo. remains an epicenter for all transportation modes, and is ripe for future growth opportunities.
Amtrak’s Chicago Gateway Blue Ribbon Panel released its report this month and made a number of recommendations to improve the flow of rail operations in the Chicago area.
While doing business with China, many companies face a wide range of challenges trying to navigate the country’s complex trade programs.
Inbound Logistics interviews XPO Logistics’ Brad Jacobs to discuss his vision for XPO Logistics, and shares insight into what it takes to be a successful leader in today’s business world.
Nutrabolt’s rapid growth created several logistics challenges, including processing orders efficiently and quickly; absorbing dramatic swings in order volumes to support promotional campaigns; and providing omni-channel fulfillment through a single warehouse. A third-party logistics partnership with Kane Is Able helped Nutrabolt meet these challenges.
New York State minimum wage directive may be a tipping point for automation in the fast food industry; Organic food recalls are on the rise; Alix Partners reports that nearshoring trend continues to grow; Pro truck interests take weight restriction fight in new direction; 2015 holiday shoppers are looking for options; The cash handling supply chain is poised to move from manual processing to scanning technology, thanks to the new GS1 US Cash Visibility Discussion Group.
As the deadline for PTC implementation looms, Class II and Class III railroads will likely find that the Class Is demand their participation in both PTC capital implementation costs and ongoing maintenance costs.
Freight audit and payment companies help shippers find the hidden cash in their supply chains by eliminating overbilling, and paying invoices accurately and quickly.
Core carriers participating in leveraged platforms typically receive consistent, attractive internal freight volumes and specific lanes of business.
Use these seven tips to find a partner in China that is right for your company.
The shortage of qualified drivers threatens the continued growth of the intermodal industry.
As e-commerce continues to transform consumer behavior, retailers explore hybrid omni-channel supply chain models that deliver the best that online and in-store have to offer.
Freight damage, loss, and theft will always occur. Planning for those inevitabilities is key to prevention and faster claims settlement.
No matter how thoroughly safety training requirements are followed, there are still likely to be gaps in your company’s loading dock safety efforts. Use these tips to better shape safety training plans.
3PLs tout IoT as top disruptive innovation in the supply chain; Hyundai and Accenture team up to design smarter ship; TMS use has tripled over the past decade; new sustainability web platform helps shippers assess key trends and best practices.
Increasing costs and challenges within the logistics industry affect your bottom line. Use these steps to reduce logistics costs.
Value-added services that fall outside the realm of traditional supply chain solutions can save millions of dollars and create mutually beneficial, collaborative relationships.
Latin American perishable exports have grown dramatically in recent years, but there are still some logistical shortcomings preventing maximum cold chain efficiency.
An Enterprise Logistics partnership helps improve companies by delivering customized applications to improve market advantage.
When it comes to transporting the oversized, the awkward, the exotic, and the endangered, the secret to success is planning, planning, and more planning.
Digital Business integrates the value chain to realize a constant stream of operational data and transform it into balanced, end-to-end metrics that improve decision making.
Work with a team of service providers to get a new retail distribution center up and running in only six months? We should all be so lucky.
The equitable assessment of demurrage and detention charges will have a great impact on shippers, carriers and ports.
The third-party logistics (3PL) segment evolved from shippers driving the process based on their needs, to collaboratively working together to create new solutions and change business operations.
The right 3PL partner can help to even the playing field between SMBs and their larger big box competitors.
When you consider the rapid evolution of supply chain management over the past two decades the 3PL industry has been a featured piece in an increasingly pixelated mosaic.
Join us as we turn back the clock and consider how outsourcing demand has changed over the past 20 years – and perhaps shed some light on where the 3PL industry is tracking.
Understanding less-than-truckload shipping challenges is the key to overcoming them.
Inbound Logistics’ exclusive market research survey on the third-party logistics (3PL) sector reveals new trends and opportunities.
Amazon and Walmart vie for last-mile supremacy; Nevada community college establishes logistics program to meet Tesla labor demand; Industrial buyers think outside the box; Consortium establishes new chemical footprint assessment; VMI opportunities abound as shippers look to optimize inventory; study looks at the ghost economy
Readers select the third-party logistics providers that provide the best outsourced logistics services.
All global supply chains carry some element of risk, but working with third-party logistics providers, with transparency in full effect, can help you achieve the best risk management outcome.
When selling products across the northern border, these three tips can help.
These supply chain, logistics, and transportation companies lead the way in supporting sustainability.
Companies are breaking through functional silos to initiate sweeping sustainability mandates.
Cost reductions are uncovered from raw materials to end delivery, but companies must focus on its customers to keep them satisfied.
Aftermarket parts providers must take advantage of innovations in the supply chain to remain competitive in today’s global market.
Shippers should consider partial shipping when looking for faster transit times, less handling, and a more cost-effective solution.
Finding a common ground between cost and corporate social responsibility remains a challenging proposition – unless organizations nurture a culture of sustainability.
A little healthy competition between employees can help to improve performance and metrics.
Recent improvements in wireless cellular technology and mesh networks provide solutions that can be adapted for warehousing space, easing startup challenges and costs.
Tired of being forced off the track, Class I Railroads are taking a stand in court over track-sharing privileges with Amtrak.
Cloud computing, omnichannel management, and big data are the questions. Can your warehouse supply the answers?
Employee incentives are a simple and valuable way to increase productivity in your facility.
In the face of increasing capacity issues, carriers prefer to work with shippers that will support their business needs
Providing technology solutions helps third-party logistics providers stand out from competitors and adds value to their services.
New regulations ensuring the integrity of the pharma supply chain are nearing the finish line. While some companies have taken an early lead to compliance, others are late getting out of the gate. Which team are you on?
Challenging weather and a remote location make delivering freight to and from Alaska a complex operation. To simplify operations, many shippers turn to transportation companies and logistics service providers that have the expertise to make sure freight flows smoothly despite the complexities.
Taking steps to adapt to ACE regulations ahead of final deadlines will save businesses much time, money, and hassle.
Enabling a holistic, integrated approach to managing global supplier risks allows companies to minimize risks, protect brand integrity, and reduce supply chain costs.
This story looks at the role technology plays in the value that various third-party logistics (3PL) providers offer to their shipper customers.
Failure to comply with domestic and international customs regulations can have a huge impact on the bottom line.
A good reverse logistics program offers mobile device retailers and OEMs a world of opportunity.
A look at the many logistics assets that make Georgia a terrific location for companies involved in manufacturing or distribution.
Freight forwarders provide value-added services beyond just transportation and logistics. Here's advice for choosing the right one for your business.
E-commerce excellence and proximity to large population areas are the new drivers behind site selection for fulfillment centers.
It is important for employers to find the most effective way to communicate with their multilingual workforce.
Globalization has a dramatic impact on strategic sourcing, logistics excellence, and supply chain management. Here’s how your company can become a preferred employer in today’s global age.
Here are three ways companies are optimizing their oil and gas supply chains and creating more predictable financial returns.
Employers must ensure that employees with disabilities are treated with respect.
Digital technologies are shaking up supply chain solutions; Maritime industry opposes Keystone XL Pipeline amendment; Procurement is the gateway to innovation, collaboration, and revenue growth; Introducing the 10 best warehouse networks
Tired of relying on e-mail blasts to place freight, L.B. Foster ups its game with a third-party solution that has transformed the enterprise.
Companies are seeking data to help them understand their supply chain networks, and strategic enterprise partners are providing the needed information to them through logistics.
Saving a few bucks doesn’t always mean throwing the customer under the bus.
Before entering the international trade arena, shippers must understand the stakes involved in regulatory compliance.
It was the worst of times for U.S./Mexico healthcare. Can demand-driven logistics make it the best of times?
How manufacturers can use technology to stretch the capabilities of their existing workforce.
With the holiday season in full swing, logistics managers must be able to rely on their vendors to perform.
Technology is enabling an unprecedented level of transparency and communication to help shippers and their logistics providers understand each other's operations, and collaborate in ways that were much more difficult in the past.
A successful supply chain team needs just the right mix of talent, skills, and personalities, not to mention a clear mission, the freedom to pursue it, and the structure to succeed.
As transportation prices rise, shippers are engaging in smart planning to reduce logistics costs.
A good reverse logistics program saves retailers money, makes customers happy, and serves as a competitive advantage.
The logistics of shipping alcoholic beverages is complex and fraught with challenges. Strategic thinking and supply chain flexibility are keys to success.
Latin America is fast becoming the destination of choice for companies looking to expand their global footprint, and 3PLs with knowledge and regional expertise will be valuable partners.
Retailers try to head off peak season surprises by beginning their Christmas lists in the spring.
Even before the final rulemaking of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act is published and enforced, food shippers should take a proactive approach to make sure supply chains are compliant.
Reciprocal switching debate casts a cloud over railroad industry collaboration; Procurement execution gap costs U.S. businesses $1.5 billion per year; Holiday consumers plan to shop sooner to avoid last-minute parcel problems; Trucking costs continue to soar as driver shortage worsens; Amazon Supreme Court case will set a precedent for how companies secure facilities and compensate workers.
North Korea,South Korea,and Russia team up to test new trade partnership,GS1 global registry sets new standard with 15 million products,Middle East airports face growing congestion problem,Puerto Rico makes Panama Canal transshipment play with Port of the Americas project,Britain introduces supply chain slavery bill.
New technologies simplify hazmat transport regulations to help shippers avoid costly fines and suspended operations.
As intermodal grows, so do its challenges. Increasing cargo volumes create bottlenecks and congestion; while the capacity shortage has everyone scrambling. How are shippers and service providers coping? This article helps solve the dilemma.
Executives at two leading companies weigh in on supply chain’s value to their organizations.
Determining the best location for a new or expanding business in an increasingly competitive and global marketplace is challenging. These locations offer a number of advantages when it comes to meeting today’s logistics and supply chain needs.
Memphis supports global supply chains through highway, rail, airport, and inland port assets, and a qualified workforce.
Manufacturers should view legislation as an opportunity to achieve better control and supply chain integration.
Establish training and mentoring programs to ensure employees have the knowledge they need.
Motor carrier safety standards dictated by state courts create confusion. National safety standards are more effective.
Intertape Polymer Group outsourced transportation to gain control of its diverse product line and protect profit margins.
Federal legislators have taken notice of the issues relating to motor carrier due diligence caused largely by CSA.
Expanding beverage product lines are generating new stockkeeping units (SKUs) - and supply chain management challenges.
Importers and exporters should update operations to ensure they are ready for the Automated Commercial Environment.
Third-party logistics services evolved to meet shippers' changing transportation, distribution, and warehousing needs.
Military veterans bring valuable skills and characteristics that make logistics operations stronger.
Online retailers such as Amazon and eBay are expanding their offerings to provide their vendors with logistics support.
Partnerships between four shippers and their 3PLs demonstrate logistics outsourcing strategies.
Logistics market report reveals trends in 3PL offerings and shippers' logistics outsourcing strategies.
Enterprise logistics providers are developing solutions that fuse data elements for insights that enable decisionmaking.
Readers select the third-party logistics providers that provide the best outsourced logistics services.
Integrated Logistics Services providers address supply chain challenges facing shippers to improve logistics operations.
Transporting and storing oil and gas products represents a complex challenge and big opportunity.
Establish internal controls, audits, and system checks to accurately manage the import process.
Midmarket companies can benefit from using automation to create a strategic export compliance program.
New federal emissions standards for heavy-duty trucks may prompt fleet operators to invest in new equipment.
3PL websites should offer tools that offer shippers information they need, and make working with carriers easier.
Reverse logistics solutions can improve the bottom line, and reduce potential regulatory liabilities.
New forklift-based technologies can positively impact safety goals in your facility.
With warehouse capacity at a premium, shippers consult 3PLs to help locate shared space.
Changes to trade regulations require importers and exporters to prepare through new licensing and software updates.
A strong corporate culture boosts productivity, improves service, and reduces workplace injuries and employee turnover.
Auto aftermarket shippers use supplier ship direct programs and high-velocity DCs to meet demand.
Shippers rely on 3PLs and refrigerated public warehouses to invest in technology, implement standards, and facilitate strategic business process change to drive greater efficiencies.
Shippers and logistics providers take extra precautions to protect high-value products from cargo theft.
Alaska’s extreme weather and geography create logistics challenges for shippers moving cargo to, from, and in the state.
A long-term vision allows a shipper-3PL partnership to make long-lasting improvements.
Supply chain partners must work together to maximize the benefit to their customers – and boost their own bottom line.
Supply chain partner collaboration improves supply chain performance, create capabilities, and increase efficiencies.
Technology tools help hazardous materials shippers manage hazmat compliance and maintain efficient shipping operations.
Outsourcing reverse logistics to a third-party logistics provider offers shippers flexibility and cost savings.
Partnering with third-party logistics providers offers shippers numerous advantages for stronger supply chains.
Georgia offers manufacturers and distributors superior access to logistics providers and transportation infrastructure.
E-commerce retailers choose specialized distribution centers near parcel carrier hubs and transportation infrastructure.
Ax Torres supervises outbound shipping at agricultural machinery company AGCO Corporation.
New Jersey’s salty tale misplaces blame on the Jones Act; UPS unveils new hazmat shipping protocol; Automakers collaborate to map the auto supply chain
Effective employee training programs benefit workers and align with corporate business objectives to drive results.
Hunter Harrison documents the culture change that has contributed to Canadian Pacific’s rail renaissance; Global companies more concerned about climate risk than emissions reductions; Deadline for new ISO17712:2013 high-security seal standards is fast approaching; Lack of collaboration between supply chain and finance hurts the bottom line
China and Taiwan depend on one another; Emirates targets multimodal transportation infrastructure investment; Chile port strike ends, concerns remain; Free online returns stoke Canadian consumption but place onus on U.S. retailers; Europe looks to United States for re-shoring inspiration; Mondelez debuts new GS1 standard
Scaling your supply chain can trigger significant adjustments in your partnerships.
Optimized reverse logistics processes provide a good customer experience and recover value from returned goods.
Cosmetics companies face challenges such as time- and temperature-sensitive shipments and retailer packaging requirements.
Third-party logistics providers are assuming a less transactional, more consultative role with shippers.
U.S. companies stand to gain from establishing manufacturing operations in Mexico – if they manage the challenges.
Shippers protect against supply chain disruptions with physical, analytical, and financial risk mitigation strategies.
Foreign Trade Zones can help global shippers cut operational costs and speed customs clearance for imports and exports.
The 2013 Rail Trends conference addressed issues of rail safety and regulation.
Many healthcare companies are investigating ways to consolidate and trim expenses in logistics and supply chain.
The aerospace industry explores new strategies for producing planes quickly, efficiently, and profitably.
Air cargo shipments of perishable goods such as produce, flowers, and seafood require careful handling.
An enterprise logistics provider delivers holistic solutions that transform your business.
Fluctuating fuel prices, Hours of Service rules, and other factors make optimized routing and scheduling vital.
Successful continuous improvement initiatives require focusing on achievable goals.
Job training is vital to maintaining a skilled and properly credentialed workforce, and must be built into every budget.
Actionable tips help you revitalize your warehousing, 3PL, trucking, and global logistics operations.
SKU proliferation tops demand forecasting trends; U.S. government creates National Maritime Domain Awareness Plan; Trucking industry documents HOS impacts; 10 manufacturing and supply chain trends to keep an eye on in 2014; 5 tips for mapping the supply chain; Spot market demand stays high into 2014; Logistics sector adopts big data
As evolving retail models push shopper expectations, companies explore new models for delivering great customer service.
Geodis Wilson helps integrated design technology company Dana Innovations expand its international supply chain.
Universities and corporations are collaborating to improve supply chain education offerings and better equip students.
Energy companies have responded to the escalating cost of doing business by looking for savings in the indirect material supply chain. As a result, many are struggling to optimize maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) functions.
Drive out inefficiencies and boost customer service by aligning with vendors to meet your supply chain goals.
Event logistics planners coordinate details to ensure precise requirements and deadlines are met.
Aviation climate emissions agreement signals major progress; Latin American economic growth expected to accelerate despite hinterland connectivity issues; IMO’s container weight verification amendment irks some shipper advocates; Rolls-Royce developing hybrid wind-powered ship; Spain and Portugal seek rail freight harmonies
SmartWay data allows shippers and 3PLs to make business decisions that support their sustainability goals.
Freight management technology strengthens partnerships between third-party logistics (3PL) providers and carriers.
New Hours-of-Service regulations impact trucking companies, driver, and shippers; Restaurant chain Chipotle struggles to maintain supplier standards in the face of growing demand; U.S. Postal Service changes Priority Mail line-up to grow package business
Transporting goods between the U.S. and Canada requires thorough knowledge of customs compliance.
Building strong teams can facilitate Lean initiatives in warehouses and supply chain operations.
Shippers must take steps to supplement inadequate government reviews of motor carrier safety.
State legislative myopia and oversight threaten private sector competitiveness; Alaska considers freight-floating air ships; M&A mega deals drive value in transportation and logistics space; Order metrics increase productivity; High-end retail outlets replace department stores.
The Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act steps up surety bond requirements for freight brokers.
Shippers’ needs dictate if a third party logistics provider or transportation management system is the best choice.
Inbound Logistics readers' choices for the best third party logistics providers.
U.S. industry confronts a failing transportation system and looming capacity crunch. New legislation may help.
Perishable shipments such as produce and pharmaceuticals require temperature monitoring and careful handling.
Flexible 3PLs drive business process improvements for shippers.
Outsourcing transportation and logistics to third-party logistics providers (3PLs) blends function and flexibility into a supply chain feng shui.
Logistics providers can help shippers save money through decreased labor, lower overhead, and technology tools.
Four companies worked with 3PLs to make over their logistics operations, so they could meet evolving business demands.
A logistics and supply chain market research survey reveal trends and insights about the third-party logistics sector.
For chemical logistics providers, safety on the truck and in the warehouse is of paramount importance.
Monitoring contracts, delivery commitments, and contingency plans helps online retailers keep their supply chains running smoothly, writes John Haber of Spend Management Experts.
Danny Monson of States Logistics Services Inc. offers tips to help shippers confirm a logistics service provider is financially stable before signing a logistics service contract.
Minnesota's warehouse tax may push jobs out of state.
Transporting goods via truck and rail services offers shippers economy and efficiency benefits. Site selection teams evaluating intermodal sites also consider factors such as labor, transportation infrastructure, and utility costs.
This story examines what customers want in an e-commerce operation and shares fulfillment strategies that merchants use to keep those customers happy.
Finding a third-party logistics (3PL) provider you can count on requires due diligence into performance history and resources, writes Kyle tGholston of Conexus.
The United States lags behind other nations in transportation policy and infrastructure funding, writes Inbound Logistics Publisher Keith Biondo.
Using an advanced logistics simulation tool to analyze system performance and lifecycle cost can help logisticians negotiate better performance-based logistics contracts, writes Justin Woulfe of WPI Services.
Streamlining border regulations more critical to GDP growth than eliminating tariffs; McDonald's Australian business introduces iOS app that tracks food sources; Internet usage disparity in China raises concerns; Indonesia to export cargo ships from China in the face of rising logistics costs; Aussie wool growers target Vietnam for expansion; U.S., Mexico align border security initiatives.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Conduct a financial checkup of your potential 3PL partners before you sign the contract.
Solid workforce training, appropriate metrics, and well-designed incentive programs give companies an advantage in building their supply chain labor pool.
At the annual RailTrends conference, industry experts shared insight on trends, opportunities, and challenges facing North American railroads.
Logistics and supply chain professionals are finding a greater need to speak out and educate government officials on key issues affecting transportation, logistics, and supply chain.
To preserve working capital and promote flexibility, many companies choose to leverage the capabilities of a third-party-logistics (3PL) provider for carrier spend, facility occupancy, and more, writes John Wagner Jr. of Wagner Logistics.
Shippers want 3PL partners that not only responsively evolve service networks and capabilities to flex with the market, but also can anticipate and be ready to meet future service requirements, writes Ray Greer of BNSF Logistics.
As manufacturers strive to strike the perfect balance between parts delivered and parts consumed in production, technology innovations allow logistics providers to ensure companies receive only the parts they need when they need them, writes John Paugh of Carter Logistics.
Warehouses, third-party logistics providers, and other supply chain businesses are making an effort to manage their collective public image in the face of union disputes and other issues. Joel Anderson, president and CEO of the International Warehouse Logistics Association (IWLA), explains how IWLA’s Public Policy Center seeks to help them achieve their goals.
Workforce management gives companies the tools they need to improve overall performance – whether they’re looking to cut labor costs, improve productivity, or create better revenue growth and bottom-line profitability, writes Malysa O’Connor of Kronos.
The value of third-party logistics (3PL) provider partnerships grows infinitely greater when shippers take a long-term approach that focuses on sustainable gains rather than short-term savings.
By identifying the value-adds that brand and retail shippers want, logistics providers can position their offerings to bring millions in benefits to their customers and make the relationship stick, writes Greg White of Blue Ridge.
As senior supply chain manager at blood management devices manufacturer Haemonetics Corporation, Emily Ross monitors the pulse of the company’s transportation and warehousing services sourcing.
Labor management systems help distribution centers and warehouse facilities monitor and measure worker performance to identify problems and improvement opportunities.
Some new trucking regulations – and proposed changes to rules and legislation – have a major affect on motor carriers. Here’s a look at these changes, and how they could affect shippers.
Inbound Logistics' annual trucking issue assesses the challenges and opportunities that await the trucking industry during this period of rapid change, writes Editor Felecia Stratton.
Recent pronouncements by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration signal the agency’s retreat from its statutory and historical oversight of carrier safety in favor of placing more due diligence responsibilities on shippers and brokers.
Multi-channel apparel retailers such as Nordstrom use strategic inventory management, order fulfillment, transportation management, and reverse logistics to meet customer demand.
If shippers use their third-party logistics partners for more than brokerage—not just as tactical providers, but as strategic partners—a whole new world of logistics excellence and accomplishments could open up, writes Inbound Logistics Publisher Keith Biondo.
Increasingly, 3PLs and shippers are working much more collaboratively, often sharing pains and gains, writes Editor Felecia Stratton.
State of Logistics report reveals recent progress and recasts old problems; : Integrated services key to outsourcing success; Apple’s strength is product development and innovation, not supply chain management; WSDOT’s Commercial Vehicle Information Systems and Networks save truckers time and money; Walmart takes sustainable business practices to wheat fields; Pharma companies turn to supply chain management to combat costs and counterfeiting.
Many companies, including Kimberly-Clark, Ebro, and USG Corporation, are moving beyond the traditional, transactional shipper-3PL relationship to form collaborative partnerships focused on mutual gain.
Inbound Logistics’ eighth-annual 3PL market research report demonstrates how 3PLs and shippers are connecting to confront existing challenges and capitalize on new opportunities.
Inbound Logistics' readers voted on the third-party logistics providers (3PLs) that give them the best service and deliver outstanding results. Here is the list of top-rated 3PLs.
Third-party logistics (3PL) providers can inspire shipper confidence by using technology tools to control loads and properly insuring their loads.
Companies are increasingly realizing that supply chain must become a core competency. Adding a supply chain control tower and taking on the fourth-party logistics (4PL) role offers them the ability to accelerate collaboration and achieve higher performance levels.
Mexico-based automotive glassmaker Vitro Automotive opened a distribution center in the United States to serve Detroit automakers just-in-time requirements. Its long-time logistics service provider Evans Distribution Systems staffed the new DC for Vitro to ensure a quality workforce.
Companies can help guide legislators about laws and regulations that will impact their industry. Brian Everett of the National Shipper’s Strategic Transportation Council (NASSTRAC) recommends ways to communicate your business’s concerns to legislators.
Companies such as Pep Boys and Georgia Pacific are harnessing technology to gain greater warehouse labor productivity through labor management systems; incentive programs; and warehouse management systems connected to forklift-mounted mobile computers.
Many state governments support transportation and logistics infrastructure development and legislation that facilitate business retention, investment, and expansion. Economic development efforts in Virginia, Iowa, Idaho, Utah, and Wisconsin demonstrate a variety of approaches to supporting in-state businesses.
Using lean components as a foundation for labor management is a powerful way to increase productivity and reduce costs in a warehouse or distribution center, according to Ryder Supply Chain Solutions’ Jeff Boudreau.
Getting your money’s worth from third-party logistics (3PL) service providers requires willingness to commit to key relationships, according to these tips from supply chain consultant Valerie Bonebrake, Tompkins International.
Third-party logistics (3PL) providers offer shippers a variety of beneficial supply chain services, writes Dan Lockwood of Unishippers Global.
Key legislative and regulatory items on Capitol Hill will have a bearing on transportation and logistics in 2012 and beyond.
Today's supply chain professionals are tough, practical, and undeterred by the specter of failure, writes Inbound Logistics Publisher Keith Biondo.
Congressman Lynn A. Westmoreland shares his perspective on West Point, Georgia’s manufacturing revival spurred by the opening of the town’s Kia Motors plant.
The Department of Transportation's third set of Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grants provides funding for a range of projects.
C.H. Robinson and Menlo Logistics Worldwide streamline managed TMS services; Ohio, Wisconsin, and California transportation legislation; GE opens renewable energy DC; Order fulfillment process grows in complexity
Vehicle management systems allow lift truck operators to complete pre-operation checklists electronically, saving valuable production time, writes Joe LaFergola of The Raymond Corporation.
The Safety Measurement System (SMS) methodology is a flawed approach to assessing motor carrier safety performance, writes Tom Sanderson, CEO of Transplace, and chairman of the Alliance for Safe, Efficient, and Competitive Truck Transportation.
Shippers, carriers, and small intermediaries that rely on third-party logistics (3PL) service providers to manage non-core logistics and supply functions, access capacity, and tap technology capabilities must review 3PL performance periodically to ensure quality service.
There is more to India’s supply chain scene than its shortcomings. APL Logistics’ David Frentzel shares insights from a recent tour of his company’s Indian facilities and meetings with shippers.
Inbound Logistics gauges the trucking industry’s response to safety issues, with a look at CSA’s impact, and truckers that lead the way in safety performance.
Viewing order management as an opportunity to add value ensures that 3PLs act as a partner that adds real revenue-side value, and not just another vendor, writes Clyde Mount, 3PL Worldwide.
Prompted by new FDA regulations, shippers examine food transportation and distribution safety procedures.
Capable third-party logistics (3PL) providers can help you manage rising logistics costs because they have highly developed processes and critical infrastructures in place, writes Brad Constantini, Comprehensive Logistics.
Just when a shipper needs help most, in steps a partner with super powers. These three case studies show how third-party logistics providers can swoop in to solve problems for shippers.
Inbound Logistics' annual 3PL market research report reveals how the dynamic duo of shippers and 3PLs are responding to changing forces in the outsourcing industry.
Responding to our annual Readers' Choice Top 10 3PL Excellence survey, Inbound Logistics readers voted on the best third-party logistics providers and related the ways in which they count on their 3PLs.
Shippers that use only the transactional solutions offered by their 3PL partners are missing the opportunity to benefit from advanced logistics solutions and expertise they helped pay to initiate, implement, and build-out, writes Publisher Keith Biondo.
3PLs, like shippers, come in many shapes and sizes. The "not-too-big and not-too-small" size of Tier II 3PLs makes them just right for many shippers.
Editor Felecia Stratton describes the highlights of the July 2011 issue, which documents the many ways 3PLs of all shapes and sizes are moving the outsourcing needle in different directions.
Gil Carmichael, founding chairman of the Intermodal Transportation Institute at the University of Denver, explains how the United States can create new economic vitality by producing a safe, energy efficient, and environmentally friendly multimodal transportation policy in which rail once again plays a dominant role.
A comprehensive supply chain labor management solution that automates processes such as hiring, time, and attendance, and scheduling can help control costs, minimize compliance risk, and improve productivity, says Malysa O'Connor, Kronos.
John Rodeheffer of Zipline Logistics outlines how to find a 3PL that delivers "Golden Rule" customer service: who treat others as they want to be treated, with honest and transparent communication.
As You Sow asks P&G and General Mills to recycle post-consumer waste; PepsiCo and Coca-Cola make bottles out of plants; Air cargo industry raises concerns about the Transportation Security Administration’s 100-percent screening mandate; Truckers report increasing volumes and rates; TMS market shows signs of rebound; CN invests in new intermodal equipment, new customers; Amazon vacates S.C. DC over sales tax
CSA 2010 guidelines can benefit shippers by increasing carrier attention to driver safety, writes David Strand, Wholesale Truck & Finance.
Third-party logistics (3PL) providers are bringing transportation management systems (TMS) to market.
Most logistics outsourcers today use an RFQ to select their 3PLs. But that model is outdated and ineffective. A handful of forward-thinking shippers and logistics providers are instead embracing a collaborative outsourcing method, with powerful results.
Chris Baltz of Transportation Insight explains how the right 3PL partner can help you achieve competitive advantage and dominate your market.
Third-party logistics provider mergers can disrupt shippers' supply chain performance. Brad Constantini of Comprehensive Logistics Inc. suggests strategies for preventing these problems.
4PLs guide transportation operations, manage product flow, and sometimes help avert disaster.
Outsource your way to a more efficient supply chain by selecting a knowledgeable and resourceful third-party logistics provider.
Industry experts explain how to avoid threats to warehoused goods, conduct a global security assessment, and benefit from renewed government and private sector attention to supply chain security initiatives.
Logistics service providers are eligible for a range of certifications, such as C-TPAT, SmartWay, FAST, and IATA. But what they must do to qualify, and why should these certifications matter to shippers?
The new world of supply chain management requires that carriers and shippers both understand and respect the economics of the industry.
Ford revamped its service parts network, processes, and technologies to boost efficiency and set the stage for global service parts logistics management.
Jerry Levy of Specialized Transportation Inc. explains how to get the best service from white-glove logistics providers.
Handling oversized cargo requires a special touch. Here's how to find a project logistics provider with the know-how to get the job done right.
Logistics providers who work to understand shippers' needs help create customer service success, as illustrated by case studies involving Pep Boys, McCain Foods, and USG Corporation.
U.S. Department of Transportation pursues ban on cell phone use while driving; Proposed air cargo screening legislation enhances security measures; U.S. retailers place increased emphasis on supply chain management
Wherever you went, attendees at the 2010 CSCMP Annual Conference were talking supply chain risk, volatility, disruption, and visibility.
The key to successful shipping in Alaska is to partner with a transportation provider that knows how to manage Alaska’s many obstacles.
Dannon's network design provides flexibility and speed to serve customers quickly, reduces transport time and costs, and delivers on the company's sustainability initiatives, while ensuring product freshness.
Duane Sizemore of Total Logistic Control discusses how companies can build better relationships with third-party logistics providers through measurement, monitoring, and rewards.
The latest round of Department of Transportation TIGER grants continues the spending bias for passenger and other non-freight initiatives.
The U.S. Department of Transportation's second round of stimulus funding for infrastructure development exposes a widening gap between U.S. roads, rails, and bridges and government special interests.
Geography, transportation infrastructure, and a strong distribution sector make Memphis a natural logistics hub.
Will rail reregulation untie captive shippers but tie up rail productivity?
Robert Russo of Port Jersey Logistics explains how to choose the best third-party logistics provider for your company.
Here is a look at the attributes that rank high on the list for any company seeking a location for supply chain activities.
By integrating contract packaging into distribution operations, companies can cut costs by 30 percent.
To improve supply chain performance at Medco Health Solutions, Gemma Fillmore focuses on getting C-level executives to give logistics issues the attention they deserve.
10 tips for what companies should consider when locating and choosing a global distribution hub.
Small and mid-sized manufacturers lack the scale to ship in full truckloads, creating thousands of separate, inefficient lines of supply—all moving to the same mass retailers. Collaborative distribution reduces the number of trucks on the road and cuts distribution costs.
Jose Fernando Nava, president, DHL Supply Chain, Latin America shows shippers how to capitalize on Mexico's attraction as a growing consumer market.
Is there a war on trucking? CSA 2010, cap and trade, and Hours of Service changes are challenging the ability of truckers to operate profitably in America, says Inbound Logistics Publisher Keith Biondo
Here's the story of one consumer product, starting with its origin as a variety of inbound ingredients and following its progress from plant to warehouse to retail store.
Ike Ortiz-Luis of DGX-Dependable Global Express explains how to navigate oversized cargo's specialized needs, from transportation requirements to project financing.
Retailers publish routing guides to establish rules for manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors to follow when fulfilling and shipping orders. Here are the benefits of establishing a routing guide.
Lean Six Sigma enablers and practitioners are using continuous improvement methodologies to squeeze cost and inefficiency out of the supply chain.
A failure to communicate is the primary reason that 3PL relationships fall apart, according to Inbound Logistics' annual third-party logistics survey.
Global supply chain visibility and detail can only be achieved by modern electronic data transmissions that are already available and can reduce the costs of international cargo movement.
A new wave of demand for value-added services requires more capabilities of retail vendors and their logistics providers.
Inbound Logistics readers select the top third-party logistics (3PL) providers.
Inbound Logistics' exclusive market research compiles shipper and 3PL input to illustrate the outsourcing sector's rapidly changing dynamics.
21st annual State of Logistics Report: Beating the Recession; Making dollars and Sense out of Jabulanis and Vuvuzelas; Mergers and Acquisitions Show signs of Recovery
Shippers and service providers discuss their experience building a strong working relationship.
A professional freight forwarder that represents the interests of all supply chain participants can serve as the missing link in supply chain communication.
To be successful, a close relationship between third-party logistics providers and their shipper customers requires a great deal of communication.
Labor management tools can help you determine if your workforce is performing at the level necessary to deliver cost-effective service to customers.
Serious challenges balance the benefits of embracing sustainability efforts, writes Inbound Logistics Publisher Keith Biondo.
Warehousing risks can spring out at any moment. Some are meant to be shared, others avoided. Successful warehousing operations strike a balance.
A combined truck-and-rail transport approach cuts costs and offers environmental benefits, writes John Patton of Trinity Transport Inc.
Vested outsourcing yields innovative logistics relationships that deliver results, writes Kate Vitasek of the University of Tennessee's Center for Executive Education.
Logistics leaders can make a difference when they actively collaborate with the government on regulatory issues, workforce training, and infrastructure development, writes John A. Evans, Evans Distribution Systems.
Shared space environments, secondary packaging services, and reimagined cross-docking functions are helping manufacturers get more value from warehousing providers. Cliff Otto, president of Saddle Creek, outlines the benefits.
Third-party logistics providers can provide capacity, expertise, technology, and buying power. Chip Smith, president of CS Advisory Group, discusses how to ensure you're getting the most from your 3PL.
Public-private partnerships fund transportation projects and make infrastructure improvement a priority.
As truckload prices starting to rise, more shippers are choosing stability over short-term cost advantages, writes Jerry DeMeuse of Schneider Logistics.
The Transportation Security Administration's air cargo screening requirements create challenges for airports and shippers, writes Robert F. Caton of AMB Logistics.
Those who suggest U.S. Customs and Border Protection's Importer Security Filing regulation, known as 10+2, adversely affects supply chain velocity shoud consider the alternative, writes Sam Polakoff of TBB Global Logistics.
Companies that combine the reduce, reuse, recycle mantra with the supply chain wisdom of managing costs and stamping out inefficiencies are developing reverse supply chains that help the Earth, the customer, and the bottom line.