The global supply chain and freight market are complex and constantly changing. Understanding the factors that impact the market is essential for businesses planning to succeed. With the markets in a state of limbo, now is the time to look for resources to help weather any storm that may be on the horizon. Companies should be looking for any edge they can get. The most popular place to start is looking into Technology solutions.
Here are five of the variables affecting freight markets and driving fear in business owners.
Supply Chain Interruptions
The ongoing logistics disruptions which continue to rock supply chains around the world are still surfacing. Key markets such as North America are currently experiencing friction due to some ports being shut down, while airports across the Asia Pacific struggle with limited service as well.
When ports shut down, it causes delays in the transportation of goods that businesses, communities, and people from all places rely on. The ripple effects caused by these issues ultimately affect everyone because businesses can’t import products anymore and each component relies on the last.
Unreliable News About Market Conditions
As the markets continue to bend from the ongoing supply chain faults, and as motor carriers compensate for the shifts that come from the unreliable news trying to paint the future, a few things are for certain.
Consumers are going to continue buying online, buildings are going to continue being built, supplies are going to continue to be desired, and innovators will continue to find solutions. Whether or not this expansion moves in lock step with what the media is saying, the supply and demand of the freight industry are solid.
Manufacturing and Delivery Delays
More than anything, the areas with the most catching up to do would be manufacturing and delivery systems on a parcel by parcel level. Customers around the world are facing a shortage of the products they’re used to being able to buy and the only sign of consumer demand slowing down is the possibility of a global economic meltdown or hyper-inflation. With the limited resources, everyone is competing against each other in an attempt to secure what supply chain capacity there is left.
Therefore, a good time to emphasize the importance of strategic planning and investing in resources that offer compounded value over time (like DOT-Ready) is now.
Delays are becoming more frequent in the face of fluid market dynamics, manufacturing, and delivery. As well as the constant pressure to find and maintain a competitive edge in an industry driven by new technology, companies have taken steps toward solving their problems through reengineering products. These specifications could pave the path to resilient supply chains with lower costs overall.
Qualified Labor Shortage
The current labor shortage and lack of modern equipment are causing prominent problems for companies globally. With several different organizations banding together to help streamline the process of getting qualified and ultimately getting hired, the direction we’re headed seems safe enough.
However, companies are unable to secure goods from ships onto docks or into final destinations without first clearing land-side hubs. These issues have been highlighted due to the unexpected burden brought forward by strikes from maritime workers demanding higher wages. The increase in wages combined with fewer hours worked per week on average will pile up the pressure and continue causing tension.
Need for Sound Investment in Technology
The use of intelligent automation in the supply chain has been a breakthrough as it enables companies to be more efficient and effective. With the increase in investments by many companies to automate key areas within their supply chains, you can expect a more active level of technology adoption in 2022-2023 and onwards. Some exciting developments in this area are Machine Learning models, AI-driven route optimization, ELD feature upgrades, self-driving vehicles, and more.
With the use of advanced technologies, leading organizations will now be able to track down any nodes or participants in their supply chains that may cause disruptions. This allows them to respond faster than before when faced with major disruption-whether at home regions or overseas markets. The goal is for this technology to simultaneously become available to smaller companies. But, it will require business owners and strategic planners to look for the best solutions to fit their needs.
Tough Challenges Ahead
2020+ has brought its fair share of challenges to the global supply chain. The need for more trustworthy examinations of the reality of supply chains and market forces is critical. Companies that plan to survive and thrive in the landscape need to ensure that the information they are acting on is accurate and based on fundamental truths. The amount of toxic, misleading, and unreliable news being used to steer people’s decision-making is at an all-time high and is scaling fast.
On the offensive, you may want to look into technology that eliminates problems and seek guidance adopting them and implementing them across your company. As we’ve stated before, DOT-Ready alone can save companies thousands of dollars on administrative staff, countless fines and violations from the FMCSA, and overall improves the operational efficiency for those who use it.