2023 Inventory… Too Much? Too Little?

2023 Inventory… Too Much? Too Little?

Inventory. That was the theme unifying both attendees and exhibitors at the 2023 National Retail Federation (NRF) convention in New York City. More precisely, everyone I spoke to was interested in load balancing inventory to serve new retail fulfillment approaches striving to catch up with the blindingly fast evolution in consumer buying habits. For retail […]

Overcoming Global Trade Barriers

Overcoming Global Trade Barriers

Lockdowns, land wars, and rising costs had companies scrambling to keep sourcing intact in 2022. Is reshoring the key to unlocking international trade challenges?

3 Ways Digital Transformation Enhances Capacity

3 Ways Digital Transformation Enhances Capacity

After consecutive pandemic years, supply chains are a mess. As a result, businesses are running out of stock just as surging consumer demand drives up prices for remaining goods, contributing to record inflation and further disrupting consumer markets.

5 Ways to Strengthen and Future-Proof Your Supply Chain

5 Ways to Strengthen and Future-Proof Your Supply Chain

In recent years, environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) practices have become a critical aspect of any company’s reputation and success. Consumers don’t care just about what they are purchasing; they also care about how the product or service gets to them. For instance, an Edelman study shows 64% of consumers worldwide will buy or boycott a brand solely because of its position on a social or political issue.

Resolving the Driver Retention Crisis

Resolving the Driver Retention Crisis

While the trucking industry has been put under further pressure by current supply chain issues, the real problem started long before the pandemic. Driver shortages were being felt as far back as 2005, according to a 2019 American Trucking Associations report.

Powering Up a Better Supply Chain

Powering Up a Better Supply Chain

Aggreko ensures business is always on by delivering energy anywhere it’s needed so that businesses can grow and communities can thrive. The power company found an ideal partner in RedStone Logistics.

Optimizing Customer Service and Corporate Value

Optimizing Customer Service and Corporate Value

Q. How can a company maximize customer service and corporate value? A. The first interaction is often with the customer service department. This team makes the first impression, setting the tone for the relationship and the perception of how your brand can fulfill their needs. Suppose the experience is pleasant and productive; your credibility increases. […]

Automation: From Benefit to Necessity

Automation: From Benefit to Necessity

Even prior to the pandemic, consumers were demanding. Since the rise of e-commerce, end users expect the ability to order what they want, when they want it, via the channels they want. Brands are adapting to this demand by offering curbside pickup, third-party delivery services, direct-from-social media purchasing, and a variety of other channels to cater to different consumer preferences.

2023: A Year of Opportunity for U.S. Manufacturing

2023: A Year of Opportunity for U.S. Manufacturing

Despite the global economic turmoil of the past two years, we are amidst a once-in-a-generation shift of global manufacturing footprints, and 2023 should continue to be a year of opportunity for manufacturers in the United States. This translates to a lot of sustained site selection activity in the market.

How to Avoid Paying Ransom

How to Avoid Paying Ransom

It is no great secret that cyberattacks are on the rise, and recent data suggests supply chains are no exception. A 2022 NCCGROUP survey shows that supply chain organizations experienced a 51% increase in attacks within the six months preceding the survey. The first step in addressing this risk is acknowledging that it exists. The good news is this should be a relatively easy step, especially compared to what comes next.

Get Closer to the Action With Onshoring

Get Closer to the Action With Onshoring

Supply chains are the lifeline of globalization. In the years leading up to the pandemic, western companies routinely outsourced production to suppliers in lower-cost economies around the world. However, the seemingly never-ending string of supply chain disruptions over the past two years highlighted the fragility of complex and dispersed supply chains.

Gaining Better Visibility: Where to Start

Gaining Better Visibility: Where to Start

While the business-to-consumer (B2C) market has embraced sophisticated technology tools to enable a digital transformation across the supply chain, the business-to-business (B2B) industry has been slower to adapt, steadfast in a reliance on spreadsheets, phone calls and email.

3 Top Emerging Automated Solutions

3 Top Emerging Automated Solutions

Within the four walls of distribution centers (DCs), more automated alternatives are replacing traditional labor-intensive process and material handling strategies. Operations leaders are beginning to automate and upgrade specific aspects of their DC operations that are bowing under the weight of e-commerce pressures.

The Supply Chain: It’s Alive! It’s Alive!

The Supply Chain: It’s Alive! It’s Alive!

In some ways, the supply chain of today is a living, breathing organism. It’s not just links and nodes on a map, but a blend of digital and/or analog data, machines, and yes, real people who are constantly moving and adapting.

Three Considerations for Choosing a Cross-Border 3PL

Three Considerations for Choosing a Cross-Border 3PL

Whether to solve existing supply chain issues or to make good supply chains even better, many companies are now cultivating shorter supply chains that boast greater agility during disruptive circumstances. As a result, North American warehouses and distribution centers are increasingly shifting to Mexican and Canadian-based suppliers, rather than overseas counterparts, to simplify supply chains and improve fulfillment processes. While this is a step in the right direction, companies are finding that shorter and simpler doesn’t mean easier.

The Evolution of Container Chassis Provisioning

The Evolution of Container Chassis Provisioning

When Malcom McLean introduced the world to container shipping in 1956, it not only touched off a seismic shift in the way cargo was handled but also the equipment and infrastructure needed to support containerized operations.

Dangerous Goods: Definition, Regulations, and Classes

Dangerous Goods: Definition, Regulations, and Classes

Companies ship various goods by land, sea, and air daily. Some are hazardous substances and pose severe effects if not handled properly. The dangerous goods regulations and guidance are strict and enforced by various government agencies and international organizations, such as the United Nations, to minimize the risk of accidents or ensure safe transport. Let’s […]

Agile Supply Chain: What It Is, Benefits, and Applications

Agile Supply Chain: What It Is, Benefits, and Applications

Supply chains can be complex and sensitive. A company can’t survive without a supply chain because it needs everything from raw materials to the final product.  Many companies have established an agile supply chain to manage supply better, move goods quickly, and deliver them on time. This process is fundamental to those who produce physical […]

What Is an ELD? The Benefits, Purpose, and Features of ELDs

What Is an ELD? The Benefits, Purpose, and Features of ELDs

Many businesses that operate a fleet of trucks or vehicles are required to have ELD or electronic logging devices installed in each vehicle. ELDs are intended to enhance the safety of professional truck drivers. ELDs are a convenient way to manage, track, and share data during driving and downtime. As technology continues to evolve, it […]

Transloading: Meaning, Benefits, and Challenges

Transloading: Meaning, Benefits, and Challenges

Transloading is a crucial component of supply chain management, as it helps to optimize the movement of goods and reduce transportation costs. It allows logistics companies to adapt to changes in demand and unexpected logistical challenges while shipments still reach their final destinations quickly and cost effectively.  Let’s look at the meaning, benefits, and challenges […]

What is a Straight Truck? Definition, Types, and Uses

What is a Straight Truck? Definition, Types, and Uses

Wondering what a straight truck is? A straight truck refers to a type of vehicle with a tractor-trailer in a fixed position. In other words, all the axles in a straight truck attach to a single frame. Usually, straight trucks look like do-it-yourself moving trucks and, in most cases, move housing supplies, boxes, furniture, refrigerators, […]

Preparing for a Holiday Surge in Cybercrime? Secure Digital Logistics Workflows

Preparing for a Holiday Surge in Cybercrime? Secure Digital Logistics Workflows

The holidays have become primetime for cyberattacks as more businesses shift to digital-first. Given the sensitive nature of supply chains, your logistics data could be at risk if managed across disparate channels. Here are three ways client portals can effectively manage vendor relationships while prioritizing security.  360-degree VIEW Between 2018 and 2020, ransomware attacks increased […]

Logistics Planning: Definition, Types, Importance, and Strategies

Logistics Planning: Definition, Types, Importance, and Strategies

Have you ever been to a business that looked neat and orderly at first glance, but behind the scenes it was a different story? It’s easy to present as a well-oiled machine in the front office, but if you neglect business processes at other levels, you’re in trouble. Logistics planning can help you fire on […]

Drayage: Meaning, Importance, and Types

Drayage: Meaning, Importance, and Types

Large container ships move cargo from port to port across the continent. Trucks and railways move cargo within countries. Consider, however, the smaller, more intricate steps that allow freight to move between transportation modes.  These smaller national movements are collectively called drayage and are crucial to shipping logistics.  What Is Drayage? Drayage is a form […]

Taking the Temperature on Sustainability

Taking the Temperature on Sustainability

Many companies will continue to take sustainability seriously over the next 12 months. A recent Honeywell survey of 600 business leaders finds that 90% are pleased with their sustainability efforts over the prior 12 months, and 97% plan environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) budget increases in the next 12 months.

Waste Eats Away the Bottom Line

Waste Eats Away the Bottom Line

Overproduction and waste may push margins in the wrong direction. A recent Avery Dennison report finds that 8% of stock perishes or is discarded before it reaches consumers–inventory losses worth up to $163.1 billion or 3.6% of annual profits. Of the 8% waste, slightly more than half (53.8%) is lost in the supply chain before products reach store shelves.

AI and ML in Retail: Help or Hype?

AI and ML in Retail: Help or Hype?

Top-performing retailers are bullish on artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), with 71% of respondents to a Retail Systems Research report saying AI-enabled analytics will fundamentally change their merchandising forecasting by 2025.

Five Trends That Will Shape Logistics in 2023

Five Trends That Will Shape Logistics in 2023

Amidst concern over the economy and ongoing geopolitical issues, 2023 promises to pose challenges to managing logistics and supply chain operations. To help companies prepare for the new year, Anaid Chacón, head of product for Nuvocargo, a digital platform focused on U.S.-Mexico cross-border trade, identifies five trends to be aware of.

Turning the Tide on Turnover

Turning the Tide on Turnover

The pandemic’s effect on inventory turnover was significant, but more recent data suggests that the situation may be improving for e-commerce brands.

Logistics Technology: The Unsung Hero of Convenience Commerce

Logistics Technology: The Unsung Hero of Convenience Commerce

As consumers embraced online ordering during the pandemic, e-commerce sales ballooned from $571.2 billion in 2019 to $815.4 billion in 2020—a 43% jump—according to a recent Census Bureau retail survey. Although online sales have cooled since the initial pandemic-driven fervor, consumers continue to drive convenience commerce, with e-commerce sales increasing 6.7% in Q1 2022. More than 20% of consumer spending from January to March occurred online.

How SMBs Can Re-evaluate Risk

How SMBs Can Re-evaluate Risk

Supply chain disruption has been a major issue since the onset of the pandemic, affecting consumers’ ability to get everything from toilet paper and pharmacy items to cars and houses. At the same time, porch-pirated theft is on the rise, with around 210 million packages disappearing from porches across the United States in 2021, according to a Safewise study.

Attacks on Energy Attack You

Attacks on Energy Attack You

Can you walk and chew gum at the same time? Leaders in the United States and globally cannot when it comes to balancing green energy initiatives with common sense energy requirements.

10 Tips: Matching Inventory To Demand

10 Tips: Matching Inventory To Demand

Demand is a constantly changing variable in any supply chain. Each time the demand tides change, retailers, wholesalers, distributors, and manufacturers must align inventory levels to meet customer expectations. Here are tips for doing it successfully.

Stay Chill

Stay Chill

Shippers face many challenges when maintaining the cold chain for food transportation. Chill out! These solutions can help.

How to Unlock Opportunity With a Procurement Control Tower

How to Unlock Opportunity With a Procurement Control Tower

With market volatility and sky-high inflation driving shifts in the price of oil and other commodities, it’s not surprising to see businesses adjust sourcing and inventory strategies in anticipation of future roadblocks. Plus, with consumer demand softening, many companies that largely over-indexed on orders last year are now sitting on a surplus of supply.

Cross Docking: Definition, History, and Process

Cross Docking: Definition, History, and Process

Cross docking is a shipping method that transfers goods from one transportation mode to another to get them directly from the source to their destination. Cross docking is widely used in freight transportation because it helps reduce costs and storage space, among other benefits. This article covers cross docking definitions, history, types, methods, advantages, disadvantages, […]

Combatting the Chip Shortage with Cloud Adoption

Combatting the Chip Shortage with Cloud Adoption

As the economy grapples with the new normal of post-pandemic buyer behavior and businesses move forward, many industries continue to experience a demand surge that has overwhelmed the supply chain. Shortages of critical components such as semiconductor chips are at an all-time high for manufacturing, transportation, and logistics.

TEU: Definition, History, and Vessel Sizes

TEU: Definition, History, and Vessel Sizes

TEU, or a twenty foot equivalent unit, is the standard measure of container capacity on a ship. In other words, it tells you how many 20-foot-long containers can fit on particular container ships. TEU is important because it allows for easy comparison of vessel sizes.  For example, if one container ship has a capacity of […]

Freight Forwarding: Meaning, Stages, and Pros and Cons

Freight Forwarding: Meaning, Stages, and Pros and Cons

Supply chain management is an integral part of any company’s efficiency. Transporting goods from one place to another can be time-consuming and expensive. The process can be complex and challenging, but if you approach it correctly, it will go smoothly and leave lasting effects on your overall business. Many companies employ third-party logistics services to […]

Retail Warehousing: Definition, Types, and Benefits

Retail Warehousing: Definition, Types, and Benefits

Retail warehousing is an essential part of the supply chain, especially as businesses across the United States face a significant decline in storage capacities, according to the Wall Street Journal. E-commerce ventures are also on the rise, and these online retail shops need space to store, package, and brand their inventory to get it ready […]

Export Compliance: Definition, Controls, Penalties

Export Compliance: Definition, Controls, Penalties

Export compliance regulations are the rules, guidelines, and procedures that control how goods, services, and technology move across international borders. United States export controls are primarily governed and enforced by the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC), and the United States Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control […]

Intermodal vs. Transloading: Definitions and Process

Intermodal vs. Transloading: Definitions and Process

Intermodal and transloading are two methods of shipping products. They are similar, but understanding the difference between intermodal vs. transloading can help you choose the shipping method that works best for you logistically and financially. The key differences between transloading vs. intermodal transportation are the methods of moving products. Intermodal is self-contained, while transloading physically […]

Warehousing Automation: DCs Level Up

Warehousing Automation: DCs Level Up

Now that achieving efficiency is more pressing—and more challenging—than ever, distribution center operators turn to flexible automation solutions to boost productivity and optimize space utilization.

Air Cargo Capacity Comes Back

Air Cargo Capacity Comes Back

For more than two years, demand for air cargo vastly exceeded supply. But now, at the end of 2022, air freight capacity is approaching pre-pandemic norms. What happens now?

Expedited Carriers Guide 2022

Expedited Carriers Guide 2022

With enterprises running just-in-time and e-commerce accelerating customer expectations, shipment speed is more urgent than ever. From managing time-sensitive medical shipments to meeting last-minute capacity needs, shippers seek fast services, at reasonable costs.

These carriers can answer your need for speed. Offering same-day and next-day options, ground expedite and air charter solutions, to name a few, the carriers on this list can handle tight timeframes, specialized equipment needs, and mission-critical shipments.

Devanning: Definition, Process, and Benefits

Devanning: Definition, Process, and Benefits

Devanning is a process of warehouse and logistics management that uses digital technology to systematically unload loose items and shipping containers from a vehicle’s load space.  Container devanning involves loading and unloading cargo using a sealed container and heavy-duty equipment like counterbalance forklifts to manage the entire operation.  When goods devan at the destination, companies […]

Customs Clearance: Meaning and Process

Customs Clearance: Meaning and Process

International trade can be complex and time-consuming, but it is crucial for businesses that import or export goods to understand one of the most critical steps in the process: customs clearance. Customs clearance is the procedure you must follow to legally import or export goods across international borders. The process can be daunting, but this […]

Capacity Planning: Meaning, Strategies, and Process

Capacity Planning: Meaning, Strategies, and Process

Capacity planning is an excellent way to increase corporate productivity. Capacity planning helps you identify potential areas for growth, which boosts investment returns, and maintains good employee morale. Planning your resource capacity is helpful when you manage several projects because it improves your chances of accomplishing them on schedule and within budget.  Using capacity-based planning […]

Reverse Logistics: All You Need to Know About What It Is

Reverse Logistics: All You Need to Know About What It Is

If you’re a retailer or e-commerce seller, you need to know about reverse logistics, also known as reverse logistics flow. Reverse logistics is a supply chain management system used to manage the return of products that were originally sent out with an order. Here’s what reverse logistics is, why it is essential, pros and cons, […]

Pumpkin Spice Pandemonium

Pumpkin Spice Pandemonium

Pumpkin spice mania is a fall tradition in the United States. Here’s how seasonality blended with limited supplies jacks up demand.

Business as Unusual

Business as Unusual

A new IBM survey of 1,500 chief supply chain officers (CSCOs) reveals that supply chain leaders have accepted their fate: Business will continue to be anything but typical for the immediate future. The main focus for CSCOs now is to prepare for what happens next.

Nearshoring Picks Up Steam

Nearshoring Picks Up Steam

All of the global supply chain snafus that have taken place over the past two years have caused many manufacturers to reexamine their supply chain and production networks. The question they all seem to be asking is: Should we bring production closer to consumption? A new report from Accenture indicates that answer is “yes.”

Acquiring Minds Want To Know

Acquiring Minds Want To Know

A new report by Barclays Corporate Banking finds that nearly half of all UK logistics businesses are likely to make an acquisition in the next 12 months as they look to expand operations and become more competitive—the highest figure recorded in the survey’s 10-year history.

Manufacturers Feel the Disruption Burden

Manufacturers Feel the Disruption Burden

Supply chain disruptions over the past 12-18 months—including shipping delays and parts shortages due to truck driver issues and congested ports—have heavily impacted manufacturers (see chart). That’s the consensus of Deloitte’s new study, Meeting the Challenge of Supply Chain Disruption, which was conducted in partnership with Manufacturers Alliance. (see chart).

How Macy’s Avoids Inventory Glut

How Macy’s Avoids Inventory Glut

Retailers across the country are struggling with inventory pileup due to 2021’s massive supply chain delays. Unloading these previous-season goods has become a top priority for the upcoming holiday and winter season. But Macy’s is singing a different tune: the retailer managed to avoid most of this inventory glut, and reported to the Wall Street Journal that more than half of its offerings for the holiday season will be new.

Intermodal vs. Multimodal: Definition and Advantages

Intermodal vs. Multimodal: Definition and Advantages

Shippers save money and time by choosing multimodal and intermodal transportation. While both methods use many transportation modes, they differ in who is responsible for your shipment. Even though it might be easier to work with just one shipping company, it is often more cost-effective to leverage the knowledge and services of more than one. […]

Freight Brokers Definition: What They Are and What They Do

Freight Brokers Definition: What They Are and What They Do

If you are a shipper, you know how crucial it is to ensure that your precious cargo moves safely between cities and countries worldwide. There is nothing as stressful as watching your goods get stuck at customs because you don’t have the proper paperwork, or worse, never making it to their destination due to bad […]

Winning in a Contract Market

Winning in a Contract Market

Freight market volatility keeps us on our toes, and we can expect that to continue. Many carriers are shifting their focus from spot to contract freight, which creates a fantastic opportunity for shippers to optimize their supply chain by adapting their carrier strategy. Here are some proven practices for doing so.

Four Tips to Strengthen Cybersecurity

Four Tips to Strengthen Cybersecurity

Supply chain problems continue to dominate headlines across the globe. In response, companies seek ways to increase visibility to help build more resilient supply chains. However, increasing the pace of digital transformation opens up an array of vulnerabilities that cybercriminals actively take advantage of. Shoring up cyber defenses is critical for logistics providers and shippers in particular, where a breach can have significant consequences.

Supply Chain Strain: How to Navigate Disruption

Supply Chain Strain: How to Navigate Disruption

Now that we’ve been in a pandemic for more than two years, it’s funny to look back at our optimism at the beginning. We expected brief supply chain interruptions and thought that things would be back to normal in a few short months. Then we realized it could drag on for a year or more. But almost three years?

Becoming a Demand-Driven Enterprise

Becoming a Demand-Driven Enterprise

The key to becoming more agile when responding to demand signals is overcoming data and decision-making siloes that impact your ability to deliver. Here are 10 ways you can start to optimize your operations to become more predictive and proactive.

Robots: Walmart Advances, Amazon Retreats

Robots: Walmart Advances, Amazon Retreats

When faced with anticipated fall-off in consumer purchases, Walmart leans into new robotic solutions. The retailer also re-tasks existing store infrastructure by attaching market fulfillment centers (MFCs)—compact warehouses inside, or tacked onto, retail stores to help fulfill pickup or delivery orders. It gets inventory closer to the customer and amps delivery velocity to serve consumers […]