Have you ever tried filling a bucket with water when there is a hole in the bottom? No matter how much water you pour into the bucket, it will continue to drain until you plug the hole. The logistics industry faces a similar situation on a regular basis. However, rather than water, the trucking world is struggling to keep the bucket full of a different resource: drivers. The current turnover rate for truck drivers is about 95 percent, and driver shortages are affecting supply chains across the country.
Compliance is a challenge in many industries, but it becomes particularly important — and more complex — when your company transports goods across state lines. Shippers that don’t prioritize compliance can discover too late that they’ve been breaking the law.
Regardless of how tempting it might seem, the fastest and cheapest route is not always the right choice.
Think about the last time you bought a nice outfit. Snagging a suit off the discount rack at a department store will save you a few bucks today, but it’s not likely to impress anyone at your next job interview. You could also invest some extra money now to get a custom-made garment from a local tailor, ending up with an outfit that makes you look like a million bucks. Five years down the road, which suit do you think will still be in your wardrobe?
In other words, inexpensive fixes can come back to haunt you. A tailored option will be your new best friend, and a one-size-fits-all solution will not likely stand the test of time. Finding an ideal third-party logistics (3PL) partner requires the same sort of careful consideration and pragmatism as buying a treasured article of clothing.
Last year, I moved into a house that is more than 100 years old. While I hope to eventually turn it into my dream home, saying it's a fixer-upper would be a massive understatement.
The home needs a lot of work, so I spend most of my weekends covered in paint and sawdust, working on projects to upgrade and customize the home to my liking. I'm a fairly handy guy, and I face a difficult decision with each new project: Do I tackle it myself, or should I hire someone who can offer expertise on the job at hand?
Businesses face a similar decision when they're ready to implement a transportation management solution (TMS). Do they place the burden of implementing a TMS on their internal team? Or do they partner with a logistics service provider (LSP) that has years of industry knowledge and experience?
According to a survey from the Harvard Business School, outsourcing key components of business operations has increased in recent years. Almost half of respondents to that survey said they preferred outsourcing to hiring new, full-time employees. Only 1 in 4 felt that hiring new employees was preferable to outsourcing.