Inbound Logistics | September 2022

H stor c nflt on, elevted fuel pr ces, nd blloon n opert n costs—welcome to rtes hovered bove 27% dur n the spr n nd summer nd spot rtes peed t 31 cents per m le bove contrct pr ces 109,340 new crr ers flooded the mret, 70% of wh ch hd one truc, ccord n to FTR Intell ence truc n n 2022 And wht  d fference  er cn me In 2021, demnd boomed Tender re ect on

freight, how they’ll handle it, or if they’ll treat customers right, or even be on time,” Croke says. “Risks pop up that compromise any potential savings. “You only need one load to go wrong and everything comes to a grinding halt,” he adds. “It could cost much more than you save.” 3   Businesses must embrace agility. That could mean trying different transportation modes, experimenting with new distribution points or even just using data to nd inefciencies in shipping patterns. For example, ArcBest, a freight brokerage and logistics provider headquartered in Fort Smith, Arkansas, has helped customers navigate around backlogs by nding new ports of entry. “The West Coast got a lot of press early on, but backlogs spread to other ports as well,” says Dennis Anderson, chief customer ofcer at ArcBest. “We have to look around the corner for our customers, to enable them to respond to these uctuations. “There’s no one cookie cutter answer for everyone,” he adds. 4   Because the trucking market is cooling, don’t assume you don’t have to take the actions you wish you had in 2021. There’s a tendency to retrench when

Rather than focusing on specic economic indicators, collect more data, have more conversations, and don’t overreact to the micro. “Keep looking macro,” Schmahl says. 2        “Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that the spot market is your answer to recouping all of the past year’s costs,” warns Dean Croke, principal industry analyst at DAT, an analytics platform and loadboard headquartered in Denver, Colorado. While spot rates have fallen, switching providers can increase the risk of poor service. “If shippers go to the broker market, they don’t know who’s hauling their

Statistics from 2022 tell a different story. More than 6,000 trucking authorizations were revoked in June 2022, nds an FTR Intelligence analysis of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. And truckload spot rates declined by 22.6% in the second quarter, according to Coyote Logistics’ Truckload Market Forecast. A softening market means that shippers hopefully have fewer res to put out, but it shouldn’t be a pass to sit back. Instead, the carriers, analysts, and technology providers Inbound Logistics talked to recommend using this time to cultivate relationships and build a game plan for the next cycle. Here are 15 suggestions to maneuver your freight into 2023. 1 ’  Executives may have noticed a disquieting headline or two when reading about the economy over the past year. But don’t hit the re alarm over any individual indicator. “Shippers should be wary of reading into any specic variable and drawing a holistic conclusion about what it means for the future,” says Andy Schmahl, partner and managing director at the Boston Consulting Group. “Often this data is cherry picked,” he adds. “For example, if inventory levels are rising, then we must be in a freight recession.”

While spot market rates have fallen, experts warn that switching carriers and utilizing brokers can increase the risk of poor service.

40 Inbound Logistics • September 2022

Powered by