Articles

Commentary

Keith Biondo

Post Office Dings E-Commerce?

Two recent and important developments will impact domestic and international e-commerce shipments. The first one concerns the U.S. Postal Service’s relationship with Amazon. Let me set the stage. The Postal Service lost $2.7 billion in 2017. U.S. taxpayers guarantee the perennially stressed postal worker retirement fund. And first-class mail receipts are off by $1.8 billion […]

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Rachal Snider

How to Become a Shipper of Choice

As shippers, carriers, and logistics service providers prepare for a busy Q4 2018, here are some ideas for easing the capacity crunch, controlling costs, and becoming a "shipper of choice." Carriers in the driver’s seat. When the freight market shifted, so did the balance between shippers and carriers. In today’s market, carriers can afford to […]

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Paul A. Myerson

Going Straight to the Sourcing

Strategic sourcing, which consultants popularized in the late 1980s/early 1990s, is a supply chain management approach that formalizes the way organizations gather and use information to leverage consolidated purchasing power and find the best values in the marketplace. Strategic sourcing involves developing supply channels at the lowest total cost, as opposed to the lowest purchase […]

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Brittain Ladd

No Industry is Amazon-Proof

Amazon is now in the oil business. With the release of its Amazon Basics Synthetic Motor Oil, the mega retailer has effectively entered an industry ripe for disruption. There isn’t an industry Amazon can’t enter. I’m amazed at how many executives across different industries tell me that they’re not concerned about Amazon for one reason […]

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Stevie Hay

Rethink Fulfillment During Peak Season

Peak season is a great opportunity to determine where your warehouse priorities should lie. Here are the biggest stories to watch this holiday season. From fast to accurate. Amazon Prime’s free two-day shipping sent shockwaves through the fulfillment industry. Reaching peak productivity and keeping up with Amazon became a major topic of discussion. But it’s […]

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Pierre Francois Thaler

The Supply Chain World is Not Flat

The idea that supply chain and logistics networks aren’t linear is not new, and neither is the concept of the circular economy. In our globalized world, the value chain has gotten much more complicated and difficult to manage, with many more variables now part of the equation. Add in the fact that the globe’s resources […]

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Keith Biondo

Talent Gap or Training Gap?

In the past, workforce training and development for blue- and gray-collar jobs took a back seat at many businesses and academic institutions. Schools often steered students toward white-collar career paths, while businesses put cutting costs, staying globally competitive, and turning a profit above training workers—a short-sighted focus on the next quarter rather than the next […]

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Noel Perry

Good News From the Government! (Yes, You Read That Right)

In its second estimate of Q2 2018 Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the U.S. Census Bureau quoted growth at 4.2 percent, the best quarterly figure since Q3 2014. That comparison is important because 2014 was also the last time the truck market was tight. When GDP rises above four percent, freight grows and the truck market […]

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Sean Wilcox

Shipping and Delivery: How to Get it Right

Thanks to the rise of e-commerce and heightening customer expectations, shipping and delivery have become key drivers of overall customer satisfaction. An e-commerce company’s ability to meet customer expectations can be a source of competitive differentiation. Executing against the wrong strategy—or not having a strategy at all—is a recipe for higher costs and lower customer […]

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Keith Biondo

Conserving a National Resource

Everyone has an opinion about how to combat the truck driver shortage—from boosting pay and benefits to lowering the age for getting a CDL (see Good Question, page 10) to self-driving trucks. But one valuable weapon you don’t hear much about is driver wellness programs. Carriers can implement these programs quickly, and net near immediate […]

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Martin Verwijmeren

Tuning Into Supply Chain Orchestration

In both the B2B and B2C markets, customers demand speedier shipments, greater flexibility, and more transparency in the order lifecycle. Only by innovating to establish real-time visibility with the power to make changes can companies achieve the agility required to meet customer needs and stand out from the competition. Let’s dig into five trends you […]

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Paul A. Myerson

Store Delivery Keeps Retailers in the Game

Multi-channel retail and fulfillment is typically based on the assumption that customers choose a main way to connect, whether physical stores or a website. Many retailers manage each channel separately with different teams, budgets, processes, tools, reporting structures, and revenue goals. In multi-channel retail and fulfillment, stores have their own stock and sell directly to […]

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Keith Biondo

Returning Experience

The war between the retail/e-commerce customer experience and increasing costs is heating up, thanks to the impact that rising transportation prices are having on the retail process. That trend plagues e-commerce players and retailers, both large and small. For example, in July 2018, spot market trucking costs were up 30 percent year-over-year, according to DAT. […]

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Michael Gravier

Leveraging Technology: Put Strategy First

With all the hype about technology’s potential, it’s easy to lose track of the basic truth that technology enables strategy. Technology applied to an inappropriate strategy will accelerate a firm’s demise. Tech trends enable strategies that are reshaping global supply chains. These new technologies complement each other; used in combination they create synergies far beyond […]

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