3PLs Tech It to the Limit

Third-party logistics (3PL) providers are investing heavily in technology to deliver the freight visibility and business intelligence shippers increasingly require, reports the 2018 Freight Visibility Report from the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA), the organization representing the $185.7-billion third-party logistics industry.

Among the key findings of the TIA report:

  • The delivery options that allow 3PLs to customize the data they provide to shippers have expanded and include everything from complex strategies to proven methods such as electronic data interchange (EDI).
  • As supply chain visibility needs accelerate, the forces of growing demand, capacity strains created by the electronic logging device (ELD) mandate, and others have introduced new variables into freight markets.
  • The future challenge will be to find optimal and flexible methods to sustain the substantial gains logistics companies have already made in providing visibility to customers.


“Increased freight visibility is creating significant value in today’s turbulent business landscape, and 3PLs are answering that need,” says TIA President and CEO Robert Voltmann. “Automation, digitization, and collection capabilities have brought 3PLs closer than ever to their customers’ information.

“The ways they leverage that proximity will determine what visibility means for years to come,” he adds.

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