Trucking Challenges Impact SCM

It is no secret that the current state of the U.S. trucking industry has had several negative impacts on logistics and supply chain management. The shortage of drivers and ripple effect from the ELD mandate have caused trucking delays and pricing increases across the country, and are now affecting global supply chains. Indianapolis-based logistics solutions provider TOC Logistics has been monitoring these industry changes closely. Here’s what they find:

  • In terms of rate differences, full truckload rates are up more than 25 percent year over year, with drayage rates even greater in some cases. For long-haul contracted lanes, the effect is milder, but pre-booking and cargo availability, as promised, has become critical to maintaining long-haul trucker support.

  • Shorter hauls—where drivers could previously discount traffic delays or wait times when reporting “hours”—are the most affected as they now handle fewer loads per driver due to strict ELD enforcement. Spot dray rates often go to the highest bidder, which can quickly drive up costs for ad hoc “must move” freight.
  • Ocean freight levels port to port will be consistent with 2017, TOC predicts. Inland port intermodal moves will increase due to capacity pressure, and inland door moves will increase even more, with truckers demanding higher rates per load. These rates will vary per lane, however, and can range from $100 to $400 per load, depending on the length of intermodal connection and door delivery haul.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution for the current issues facing supply chain and logistics management, but TOC recommends shippers constantly monitor prices, delivery times, and customer satisfaction to stay successful in the current market.

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