Why Shippers Love Supply Chain Visibility

Posted by PLS Logistics March 23, 2017 at 10:22 AM

Visibility refers to understanding what goes on between the start and end of a process. With supply chain visibility, companies can analyze data and evaluate suppliers, processes and prices.

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3 Global Supply Chain Issues Affecting Your Bottom Line

Posted by PLS Logistics March 9, 2017 at 9:04 AM

Large, and even medium-sized, companies that are strictly domestic are becoming increasingly less common. Today, the clear majority of enterprise-class companies are global because the benefits of low-cost sourcing into other countries and selling into new foreign markets cannot be passed up.

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5 Secrets to Master Supply Chain Visibility

Posted by PLS Logistics February 21, 2017 at 9:39 AM

The 3 main goals of supply chain visibility are 1) to reduce business and supply chain threats, 2) to improve performance and service, 3) and to identify inefficiencies and opportunities in the supply chain.

Supply chain visibility refers to the knowing where products and materials are, at any point in time, in the supply chain. It's a fundamental part of enhancing logistics functions and results in monetary and time savings. However, supply chain visibility is limited.


41% of E2open survey respondents reported that their supply chain visibility extends as far as tier one relationships with contracted manufacturers. Supply Chain 24/7 supports that result, noting that about only 30% of companies have automated data and event monitoring and/or have optimized process capabilities in place.

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Automakers Succeed with Lean and Resilient Supply Chains

Posted by PLS Logistics February 2, 2017 at 9:39 AM

The automotive industry has a lot of moving parts and experiences ebb and flow as demand and economic conditions shift. Most US automakers outperformed December expectations, selling 17.55 million new vehicles, ending 2016 on a high note. In 2015, US markets set a sales record of just under 17.5 million vehicles, up 5.7% from the year before.

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PLS’ 11 Most Popular Blog Posts from 2016

Posted by PLS Logistics December 20, 2016 at 12:30 PM

(#11 Most Read Blog in 2016) Seasonal Freight Surge and Consumer Forecast
-Fuel prices, weather, capacity, and e-commerce are a few factors that determine truckload demand during the holiday season. Before Thanksgiving, reefer volumes increased and as December’s holiday shoppers start buying, more dry van loads were posted. UPS is expected Monday, December 19 to be the busiest shipping day, and for this year to have 14% more shipping volume than last year. (See the NRF predictions here.)

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The Top 6 Supply Chain Trends to Watch in 2017

Posted by PLS Logistics December 19, 2016 at 4:00 PM

  1. Globalization

The supply chain is affected by the globalization of business, and those who work with international suppliers don’t have the same competitive advantage they once had. More markets are emerging in the global economy, and traditional supply and demand is changing. Industry Week reports that by 2025, global companies will have procurement managers based in China to source materials and services not only for their operations in that country, but for their entire organization. Brazil, Russia and India are predicted to become sources of supply and demand for global companies. Companies will have to be transparent in supply chain expansion strategies and offer suppliers visibility.

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What Your Inventory Reveals about Your Reverse Logistics

Posted by PLS Logistics December 8, 2016 at 12:45 PM

Supply chains share common goals: increase productivity, reduce costs, mitigate risks. Common goals for reverse logistics are to improve customer satisfaction, cut costs, maximize return on assets. Reversing the supply chain means taking in returns, recalls, damaged goods and overstocked merchandise and recapturing its value or disposing of it. With the popularity of online shopping, the supply chain has become more multifaceted, increasing the importance of an organization’s reverse logistics strategy and inventory management practices.

The Importance of Reverse Logistics

Of all products sold, an average of 8%-12% are returned, and the cost to return those units is 2-3 times more than bringing them to market.

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7 Trending Transportation Updates: November 2016

Posted by PLS Logistics November 29, 2016 at 8:45 AM

  • Little Change in Economy, but Rate Increase Coming. Next year, the US economy won’t change much, growth expected to be about 2%. FTR predicts more of the same, but when you factor in low expectations, 2017 will feel like a good year. Shipping prices are expected to increase in 2017 and continue into 2018. FedEx, UPS and several LTL carriers have announced a series of rate increases effective in 2017.
  • Self-Created Holiday has Vigorous Delivery Window. Singles Day is the largest shopping day in the world, 4x bigger than Black Friday. Alibaba was expected to generate $20 billion in total transaction value. Last year, Alibaba did $9.3 billion in revenue on Singles Day, shipping 278 million orders in 24 hours. The same-day delivery window requires a new way of thinking about transportation and logistics. China struggles with delivery, mostly because of an underinvestment in infrastructure and inefficient regulation. So, Alibaba has pledged to invest billions of dollars in order to link third-parties to deliver shipments. (Source)

  • Busiest Thanksgiving Since 2007. 7 million Americans were expected to travel at least 50 miles for the Thanksgiving holiday, that’s 1 million more people compared to last year. This represents a 1.9% increase over 2015, and the most Thanksgiving travelers since 2007. AAA credits the increase of travel to inexpensive fuel (the second-lowest in a decade for the holiday travel period), rising wages and increased consumer confidence. (Source)

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Supply Chain Management Best Practices: Efficiency, Effectiveness

Posted by PLS Logistics November 15, 2016 at 12:30 PM

Supply chains are multifaceted and can be a noteworthy source of competitive advantage. To improve efficiency and effectiveness, companies have to improve predictability, optimize costs, minimize working capital, mitigate risk, and analyze data. Companies who strategically improve even one area of the supply chain create a ripple effect of operational advantages. A resourceful, successful supply chain helps businesses save money – from faster delivery time, shorter factory processing time, better inventory management.

What is supply chain efficiency?

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Supply Chain Collaboration: Benefits of Partnering with Your Competition

Posted by PLS Logistics November 3, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Supply chain relationships have evolved to be central to the success of 3PLs and their customers. Companies are finding innovative ways to make collaboration work for shared benefit, and by teaming up with suppliers, buyers and competitors, companies are reaping benefits of cost efficiencies and monetary availability.

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