This Thanksgiving, we are incredibly thankful for our incredible team for their continued hard work and dedication throughout the year. In addition, we give thanks to our clients, business partners, and community; we appreciate your continued support. Wishing you a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!
CINCINNATI, Taylor Logistics Inc. (TLI), a third-party logistics provider, was ranked amongst the Greater Cincinnati’s Largest Logistics Firms by the Cincinnati Business Courier (CBC). Top logistics provider
Each year CBC runs an auditing survey ranking all logistics firms in the area on different criteria, including local full-time employees and the previous year’s revenue.
Taylor is proud to be listed as the fourth largest logistics firm in great company with other top providers.
It’s time to start planning for the holiday shipping race! From Black Friday to December 23rd, it’s always a rush to make sure items are delivered in time. Or maybe you’re just trying to ship one parcel in time for the holidays. Either way, the holiday season is swiftly approaching, and it’s time to start preparing. Here are your deadlines for USPS, UPS, and FedEx:
This update is a report that analyzes data from multiple sources, including but not limited to FreightWaves SONAR, DAT, American Shipper, Morgan Stanley Research, FTR Transportation Intelligence, Journal of Commerce, and National Retail Federation(NRF).
The broken record phrase of “freight volumes continue to rise” is still in play. The current Outbound Tender Volume Index is roughly 3% higher year-over-year (YOY). We get that 3% might sound and look like a minimal increase but keep in mind volumes were accelerating quickly over the last several months of 2020. So while the comps are more challenging as we get into the more difficult months of 2021, the volumes are still dominating what they were a year ago. Our team is digesting the 2021 peak season and the factors that are currently influencing the market.
Ports Delays Continue to Rise
Many anticipated a slowdown in import activity, as ports are overburdened with operations and equipment trying to keep up with the constant influx of ships waiting to unload their cargo. But that is hardly the case. While the numbers fluctuate from day to day, there were 70 container ships in the queue on Monday in late September 2021, with a total capacity of 432,909 twenty-foot equivalent units. To put the vastness of that number in perspective, that’s more than the inbound container volume the Port of Long Beach handled in the entire month of August. It’s roughly what Charleston handles inbound in four months and what Savannah handles in two. So why the boom? Well, consumers are spending. eCommerce, a rise in CPG, the upcoming holiday season are driving demand for imported goods, requiring ships for transportation.
What happens when the cargo finally reaches the port? First, available trucks will flock to these locations due to the increased pay possibilities that this freight represents. Second, shippers and retailers waiting for their long-dormant freight will pay above-market rates to get their goods rushed directly to their destinations.
Consumers Buying Trends Continue to Increase
Consumer goods have encountered extensive growth since the start of the pandemic, and there are no signs of this trend slowing down. Employment numbers, a reliable predictor of spending, are the strongest since March of last year. While consumer spending did not need employment numbers to remain elevated for the past year, a more stable job market bodes well for the economic outlook and trends to continue. In August, consumer spending bounced back from a mid-summer lull. During the past month, it jumped .8% after a decline of .1% in July. Moreover, income rose by .2% as consumer prices increased by .4%.
Partner With a Logistics Solutions Provider to Navigate Peak Season
Our team is here for you. No matter the situation, we’ve got your back.
We are here as your partner — we are an extension of your team with a clear understanding of our responsibility to replicate the strategic business goals of your organization. No matter the size of your business, we help our customers achieve the best possible freight outcomes and decrease overall costs.
We know it can be challenging to find a logistics partner to handle all of your brand’s needs. While a lot of partners can manage certain aspects, they can’t handle the others. What do we mean by this? Oftentimes you might have to outsource your transportation and shipping needs to one partner while doing your fulfillment and distribution at another. In the end, it can be difficult to have complete supply chain transparency when two or more companies are running your brand’s logistics.
What Is Supply Chain Visibility?
Supply chain visibility is the ability to track raw materials and components from origin suppliers and manufacturers through the organization’s manufacturing facilities to customers. This definition extends to include tracking goods from suppliers through to end customers (B2C or B2B) for retail operations.
How Can We Solve This Problem?
Today’s businesses rely on comprehensive and often multi-layered networks of vendors, suppliers, and customers, resulting in complex supply chains incorporating vast amounts of information from a range of sources. Effectively managing your networks, and therefore visibility is essential for an optimized supply chain. It would help if you had a partner that can handle your products from the ports in New Jersey to Ralphs’ shelves in California and everything in between. The between can be anything from relabeling cases, Amazon FBA/FBM, creating multi-packs of products, and POP in-store displays. Rest assured, you should have fast, efficient, and reliable delivery, as well as outstanding service, for you and your customers.
Look No Further
Taylor has been in business for 170+ years; they have altered their business to better suit customers’ needs throughout their extensive history. There’s a saying that goes, ” I know a thing or two because I’ve seen a thing or two,” and that’s deep-rooted in Taylor. From fortune 500 companies to small businesses and special projects, they’ve seen a lot of things come through their dispatch center, fulfillment warehouses, and brokerage team—no task too big or too small for a team within Taylor to tackle. They are a solutions-based company that prides itself on innovation, safety, and technology. They can cover whatever your needs are, eCommerce, LTL shipping, port-to-door services, SQF food-grade distribution, finding a new logo for your packaging, kitting time studies, and anything else your brand might need help with; they will be the expert, or they will find the expert.
According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), more than 185 million people are expected to shop over the five-day Thanksgiving weekend. This time can be a stressful time for retailers and the transportation industry, and the days between Black Friday and Cyber Monday are typically the peak period of the rush. Massive volumes of e-commerce purchases are putting more and more pressure on business and logistics managers each year. Whether your business manages your supply chain in-house or uses a 3PL partner, supply chain planning in peak seasons like this requires the use of supply chain industry best practices.
The Origin of Black Friday
The term “Black Friday” was first associated with financial crisis and shopping sales. Jim Fisk and Jay Gould, two wall street financiers, bought a significant amount of US gold in the hope of the overall price soaring and turned to be able to sell it for massive profits. On Friday, September 24, 1869, in what became referred to as “Black Friday,” the US gold marked Crash and Fisk, and Gould’s actions left Wall Street barons bankrupt. In the later years, the post-thanksgiving period became associated with the name.
Although this is the origin story, there is one black Friday tale that also attributes to its name. When stores recorded their accounting details, they noted profits in black and losses in red. The story goes that many shops were “in the red” throughout most of the year. Still, they later “went into the black” the day after Thanksgiving when shoppers bought a significant amount of discounted merchandise for the holiday presents.
Supply Chain Best Practices for Holiday Shopping
Use your 3PL’s Value- Added Services
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are the times of year that your third party logistics provider will become an extra benefit to your business. Using value-added services such as kitting and packaging to prepare high-demand items ready to go, and kit pre-package many of them in preparation for holiday shoppers. A 3PL can typically also provide temporary storage overflow inventory for the peak seasons.
Take Care of Your Employees.
The holiday season is the worse time to lose employees. Due to to the high-stress environment of a warehouse or fulfillment center and the longer holiday hours, this time of year is at high-risk for employee turnover. This is not a time to slack on your promise to company culture. Try and keep the work environment as light as possible and maintain open communication by having conversations with employees to make sure they feel appreciated during such a critical time for logistics.
Peak season is not the time of year when your system can go down; all systems must be running up to speed. During the Black Friday/Cyber Monday period, your order management, distribution, allocation, replenishment, and financial systems will be subject to a level of transactional activity that can be many orders of magnitude higher than ever before.
Employee training throughout the year is critical so that they can jump into whatever role might be the most in-demand during the holiday peak season. Not only does routine training empower your workforce, but it also improves team morale.
Focus on Customer Experience
While optimizing supply chain efficiency with standardized processes and automation, supply chain professionals should focus on the customer experience. Customers gain trust in businesses that can handle the busiest of shopping days.
Statistics/ Trends According to NRF
People ages 18-24, 88% t say they are likely to shop and particularly enjoy the social aspect. Similarly, 84% of those ages 25-34 plan to shop. That compares with 69% of holiday shoppers overall.
Of those planning to shop, there is an almost even split of people who plan to start their shopping in-store 47% compared with those who plan to start online 41%. Those under 25 are even more likely to say they expect to start shopping in-store 52%.
The top reasons consumers are planning to shop include:
65% The deals are too good to pass up
22% It’s when they like to start their holiday shopping
Third-party logistics (3PL) providers have a longstanding history of providing services to manage the supply chain better. Modern 3PLs have evolved their services and incorporated technology to keep up with consumer demand. Likewise, shippers are turning to technology-enabled 3PLs to increase overall efficiency and boost performance. The overlap of technology and logistics provides an end-to-end supply chain solution.
Why Should You Use A Technology-Enabled Third-Party Logistics Provider?
Increase in Supply Chain Visibility
Shippers are under pressure to reduce supply chain costs as part of more significant company cost-saving initiatives. Shippers want more services and better transparency from their supply chain managers, ideally without increasing the budget. To evolve with the ever-changing technology landscape, several 3PLs and supply chain managers have shifted to wireless technologies and cloud computing to automate systems and improve accuracy for their customers. Technology, like radio-frequency identification (RFID), is a popular method of automatic identification and data capture. RFID tags can be attached to an entire pallet, inventory, or almost any item, the tracing possibilities are extensive and applicable to numerous aspects of the supply chain. Shippers want to be able to answer the question, “When exactly will my delivery arrive?” Integrating new technologies will make answering that question much easier.
Integration of Multiple Platforms
Integration between 3PLs and their customers’ software systems creates efficiencies and improves response times. Service concerns can be handled immediately and escalated to the proper solutions team. Obstacles will occur, so quick response times are critical. Providers can integrate their TMS/WMS with client systems to form a single management system that renders customizable reporting and solutions. A successful provider will use EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) to share information with customers and other associated parties. EDI eliminates accidental data entry and increases efficiency and allows the provider to offer real-time updates to customers.
The Internet of Things (IoT)
This revolutionary technology allows devices to communicate with each other within an existing internet infrastructure without human intervention—devices of all sorts such as tablet computers, sensors monitoring machinery or vehicles, or even wearables. In warehousing, it allows planners to know exactly what’s on hand and precisely where it’s located in the warehouse. In IoT enabled trucks, sensors can report everything from remaining fuel levels, tire quality, and conditions inside a container. The use of connected devices, other technologies, and supply chain planning is moving ahead full steam, allowing for massive cost saving.
Talk With Taylor
Technology enables logistics. To keep up, you must embrace and evolve with the current technology climate. A tech-enabled 3PL can save you time, money, and headaches while improving customer service. Partner with technology-driven Taylor today.
A supply chain is a sequence of tasks that must be undertaken to distribute a commodity. When a company needs to gauge its supply chain performance, it uses a range of different supply chain metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs). Each KPI provides a slightly different vision of one slice of the supply chain. You might be asking, “What Key Performance Indicators should I measure to improve my supply chain? Here are the main KPIs in both the transportation and warehousing realms that are the most commonly reported for our customers.
On-Time Delivery: Shows the carriers ability to deliver successfully on time to their scheduled required arrival date or to the appointment time. Having an accurate on-time delivery is critical for your client to avoid fees, as they may be subject to fees from big-box retailers.
Cost Management: Optimizing a transportation budget through KPI use is more than just tracking costs and expenses. KPIs are essential factors to discuss during freight contract negotiations and help determine if service levels are being met. This metric puts focus on these charges and helps to pinpoint the recurrence of key incidences. Problems or issues may be monitored and resolved swiftly to avoid any unnecessary fees and ultimately lower your transportation costs. A robust audit process can help save many dollars. The more error-free your freight bills and payments, the more you save, and the more net profit gravitates to your bottom line.
Cost Per Pound: Measures gross net with total weight moved each month or quarter to show customers’ buying and usage habits. This KPI will help improve your customer to continue to buy optimal amounts. These trends can help them save money but not over or under buying products.
Inventory Accuracy: Every warehouse manager knows the inventory in their warehouse costs them. Quantifying these specific carrying costs — including capital costs, inventory risk, inventory service costs, and obsolescence — help a warehouse manager make smarter buying and forecasting decisions, leading to higher inventory turnover.
On-Time Shipping: This KPI shows the percentage of shipments that left the warehouse on-time. A lot of products have tight deliveries with small windows. If a shipment is missed, your client can be hit with delays and even late fees.
Order Picking Accuracy: An incorrect order can result in an increasing shipping time per average order, inventory being put back on shelves, rate of return, etc. Lean fulfillment and warehousing practices reduce waste and streamline picking processes – and help maintain a high order accuracy rate.
To no great surprise, predictive analytics have become a staple of nearly every industry. The concept of using data to make better decisions holds water across several business types. However, predictive analytics platforms feature tools and designs specifically for logistics. Advanced analytics works by analyzing real-time data, predicting future situations, and prescribing complex, money-saving decisions on the spot. Fully leveraging the spectrum of predictive analytics is a must for current and future successes within the logistics industry. However, understanding how to quickly and frequently to act on insights from advanced analytics is becoming just as crucial. We will introduce you to the power that predictive analytics packs for the logistics industry.
Let’s define predictive analytics:
Predictive Analytics uses forecasts and statistical models to judge and provide recommendations about what could happen.
We all understand that there are two sides to every story. But in the end, input from your consumer holds a lot of value. Predictive analytics platforms can create and review customer profiles, gather more insights about that customer, including their shopping trends, demographic data, and additional KPI’s that allow you to fine-tune your marketing, sales, and supply chain operations to suit their needs.
Improving the Last Mile
Shippers spend most of their time and resources trying to find creative ways of improving the delivery experience for their customers. Predictive analytics allows shippers to discover inefficient operations, procedures, or performance; review the data, and recommend a series of changes.
This type of real-world information gathering is essential to improving last-mile logistics. Collecting data from GPS systems on delivery vehicles, instant information from mobile devices, and input from the customer directly and analyze all this information and predict future performance.
E-commerce generates a vast volume of supply chain data, which can be used to create near-real-time forecasts and accommodate sudden changes in demand. This information can leverage existing and real-time data to identify future trends, as well. In addition, order fulfillment can impact so many departments across your company — not only your warehouse but also sales and marketing, customer service, finance, and other teams. Any business intelligence you can use to streamline and improve those processes can save your business a lot of money.
Increased On-Road Efficiency
One of the most critical areas for shippers to focus on is on-road efficiency. Predictive analytics allows shippers and delivery companies to review their on-road performance with real-time visibility. It will enable you to review this data in multiple, customized reporting functions, and make changes along the way.
Important information regarding the Coronavirus from the American Logistics Aid Network (ALAN)
American Logistics Aid Network is closely monitoring information regarding the novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) and its impact on supply chains. We are currently working with our government and nonprofit partners to assess any potential impacts and response actions, and we will keep you informed via this page and our social media channels. You will find below several links which may assist your business with your preparedness activities. We invite your questions and comments via our contact us page.
On February 2, 2020, millions of people at home will tune in to Super Bowl LIV. Thousands more will travel to Miami, Flordia, to see the San Fransico 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs face-off (plus, enjoy the halftime performances of Jennifer Lopez and Shakira). So, how does one of the most notable sporting events in the world meet the demands of fans, players, attendees, and others?
Think about all of the various supply chains that move within the Super Bowl. From footballs, uniforms, and helmets for players to microphones and cameras for the media. There are t-shirts, and hats for fans, plus beer, nachos, and soda for attendees. The field requires materials for maintenance, paint, and signs. These are just a few examples of the many things affected by logistics at the Super Bowl.
The introduction of ELDs, lack of drivers, and rising rates have created a mixture of anxiety throughout the shipping industry- especially when it comes to timely events. Fortunately, shippers can prepare some products for the big game in advance. For instance, beverages have a longer shelf life so that they can be moved to retailers days, sometimes weeks, in advance. However, some products are time-sensitive. Staple Super Bowl snacks like chicken wings can’t move truckloads too far in advance, making visibility and real-time notifications critical. Without these things, a load might be lost and will create a loss of revenue and market share – a massive deal on Super Bowl Sunday.
Some might say that 2019 was the year of customer experience (CX). In fact, according to the 2019 State of Service Report from Salesforce, 80% of customers now consider their experience with a company to be as important as its products or services.
Customers don’t just buy a product or service — they buy an experience. Creating a unique, efficient, and personalized experience can have a tremendous impact on business growth. As a third-party logistics company, we have two types of customer experiences to focus on. Our customers’ experience and their customers’ experience. Acting as an extension of our customer’s team and as an integral part of their supply chain, we must focus on not only their needs but also the needs of their customers. One way we do this is by upholding brand image and expectations. Omnichannel distribution and fulfillment are ever-present in the retail industry, with a growing number of consumers taking advantage of the convenience e-commerce provides. With multiple procurement channels available, it is just as important for brands to ensure their customer experience is the same across all channels. As the ‘last touch’ before a product arrives on a consumer’s doorstep, it is the job of the 3PL to ensure all products arrive in pristine condition and create a visually appealing, ‘unboxing’ experience for the consumer. ‘Unboxing’ was born out of a combination of the omnichannel phenomenon and the use of video on social platforms. Customers may never see your trucks, your warehouse, your committed drivers and operators, or even their products. This is why leaders are finding customer service is so important — it’s what your customers will remember about their experience with you.
The supply chain can make or break the customer experience. And to thrive within e-commerce, businesses must invest in supply chain technologies. Those that create integrated, transparent and responsive supply chains are capable of delivering exceptional customer experiences profitably. At Taylor, by combining hands-on support, technology, logistics services, and a dependable partnership, we are creating an optimal experience for our customers and our customer’s customers.
The new year is upon us, and with the end of 2019, we reach the end of the decade. Over the years, logistics has gone through a massive transformation due to changes in customer demands and new technological innovations. Companies need to deliver their products quicker than ever before, at a low cost, in a sustainable way. Below are the 2020 supply chain management trends that will further these shifts.
Supply Chain Digitization
The implementation of new digital technology in logistics will continue to be priority. Smart, efficient supply chain systems that eliminate silos create transparency and enhance responsiveness. This ecosystem will depend on several critical digital technologies—including logistics platforms, analytics, robots, and even 3D printing. The ultimate goal for companies exploring supply chain digitization? Real-time, end-to-end visibility that provides a competitive advantage, streamlines processes and exceeds customers’ expectations.
Internet of Things
Internet of Things (IoT) is coming of age, as prices decrease, research shows the number of businesses using IoT devices increased from 13% in 2014 to 25% in 2019. The IDC forecasts 13.6% annual growth through to 2022. IoT enables organizations to control inventory, automate stock reordering, and keep track of deliveries, all in real-time. Sensors can foresee wear and tear on equipment, supporting timely ordering of spare parts. Untimalety IoT will increase supply chain transparency.
Building a Greener Supply Chain
The drive towards environmental sustainability is putting increased pressure on logistics managers. Green supply chain management practices can be included in every link of the supply chain from product material sourcing, product design, and manufacturing processes after the product’s useful life. Some sustainability practices are simple – like energy-efficient lighting in the warehouse and planning delivery routes to minimize mileage & fuel consumption. But developing a truly green supply chain requires complete methodological shifts to most companies’ current supply chain practices.
The Normalization of Omnichannel Supply Chains
In response to customer demand, businesses will make significant strides towards offering an omnichannel buying experience for customers. An integrated view of all customer channels and inventory, along with dynamic delivery and fulfillment options and seamless customer service interactions. The switch from single- and multi-channel supply to omnichannel supply requires a complete rethink of supply chain logistics.
Improving Customer Experience
Instead of thinking like operations, putting on the marketer and customer success hats and prioritize the delivery experience the customer receives – branding, UX, speed of delivery, transparency, visibility. Logistics leaders should then focus on reducing these pain points in their teams by investing in technologies that simplify staff workloads and reducing complexity that makes the customer journey as effortless as possible.
In conclusion, the 2020 supply chain management trends focus on technology bringing new possibilities to supply chain management and bringing discrete areas of the supply chain closer together. Which of the new trends will you be adopting in the new year?
Change in consumer habits can lead to disruption, and if a company hasn’t planned, they could suffer a potential loss in sales. Let’s begin by unwrapping a few key variables for planning your supply chain for the busy holiday season.
2020 is in just a few short months. It’s the year that Gartner predicted that more than 50% of major business processes will incorporate some form of the Internet of Things (IoT). Logistics companies are upon some of these major businesses. Though often disregarded, the application of IoT in supply chain management is already making extraordinary advances and improvements in the logistics landscape. From sensors providing visibility of products in transit to cloud platforms that optimize fleet management and load dispatching. Implementing IoT technology not only ensures efficient operations, but it also gives an edge on competitors and builds your brand. Below are a few of the many functions IoT provides for various logistics companies.
1. Tracking Capabilites
An essential IoT function in the supply chain is tracking and visibility. A Forrester study concluded that 77% of surveyed organizations consider locating objects, containers, and drivers as the top primary functions of supply chain IoT. With RFID and GPS sensors, operators can trace a product, truck, or container in real-time. These technologies also monitor vital details like time spent in transit and temperature control. This data allows operations managers to improve and get a firmer grip on quality control and on-time deliveries.
2. Fleet Management
To efficiently manage fleet operations, there are now GPS and other tracking technology capabilities that gather data in real-time. These IoT functions are essential for a fleet operations team, so they know the location of the trucks, weather conditions, traffic situations, driving patterns, and average speed. This real-time data helps logistics operators make more efficient routes, manage headcounts, save on fuel cost, and ultimately optimize their fleet.
3. The Ability to Predict Maintenance
Supply chain management is typically an asset-intensive business process. From warehouse equipment to delivery vehicles, these assets need to be continuously monitored to ensure that they are still that processes are running as efficiently as possible. Through the capabilities of smart sensors, operators can determine if a particular asset needs to be serviced. Thus resulting in reduced asset downtime and asset failure, which overall saves money.