Inbound Logistics | September 2022


The 2022 survey points to several significant changes in the trucking landscape since last year. One is that truckers find it slightly easier to give shippers the capacity they need. In 2021, 56% of respondents listed capacity as one of their greatest challenges; this year, that number fell to 46%. Trucking companies are also struggling less with pressure to make fast deliveries. While 24% listed that as a challenge in 2021, only 18% say they’re grappling with the Amazon eect this year. But truckers still have serious money worries. Like last year, driver-related costs top the list of important challenges in 2022; 82% of truckers cite it this year. Insurance costs and liabilities—a challenge named by 62% of truckers this year—took second place. Some cost concerns have climbed a few notches on the list of challenges in this inflationary era. Not surprisingly, one of those is the cost of fuel. In 2021, 25% of truckers listed that as a major challenge. In 2022, a year when the average price of diesel passed $5.50 a gallon at one point, 41% of truckers say they worry about fuel costs. And 38% of them cite rising equipment costs as an important concern, compared with 26% in 2021.

Driver-related costs Insurance costs and liabilities Providing capacity Supply chain disruption Fuel costs

82% 62% 46% 46% 41% 38% 35% 26% 22% 20% 18% 13%

Rising equipment costs Technology investment Regulations and compliance Price pressure from customers/competitors Infrastructure concerns Demand for faster deliveries (Amazon eect) Sustainability requirements Competition (intermodal, pooling, brokers) Finding and retaining customers Cargo theft/security

7% 7% 4%


84% 52% 38% 35% 30% 15% 14% 14% 12% 11% 8%

Reducing transport cost

In 2021, the two biggest challenges for shippers were reducing transport cost and finding capacity. That’s true in 2022 as well, although the emphasis has shifted a bit. Transport cost has taken on slightly more weight—cited by 84% of respondents this year, compared with 80% in 2021. And shippers this year are slightly less worried about finding capacity; 52% name it as an important challenge, down from 56% last year. Interestingly, shippers’ perceptions on this issue don’t quite match carriers’, as only 46% of carriers say they worry about their ability to provide capacity. If carriers have more trucks and drivers available this year than last, not all shippers have gotten the news. Fewer shippers this year than last (30% compared with 39%) say they are feeling price pressure from customers and competitors. This is not surprising in an inflationary market, where nearly everyone is charging more and customers are forced to accept it. Customer service and eœciently matching supply to demand remain significant challenges for slightly more than one-third of shipper respondents. Although only a small percentage note worker safety as a challenge, that segment of the survey pool increased from 10% to 15% between 2021 and 2022.

Finding capacity

Customer service

Matching supply to demand eœciently

Price pressure from customers/competition

Worker safety

E-commerce volume surge

Increasing insurance costs and liabilities

Environmental, regulatory, and security compliance

Cargo theft/security

Migrating to intermodal and/or rail solutions

46 Inbound Logistics • September 2022

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