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  • Writer's pictureSergey Bort

Common Trucking Supply Chain Problems

Updated: May 20

Common Trucking Supply Chain Problems

Like many industries, the trucking and logistics industry is no stranger to supply chain problems. That being said, with the right trucking industry solutions, companies can overcome logistics challenges and, ultimately, prepare their fleet with the resources necessary to minimize supply chain disruptions and improve their efficiency.

There are several supply chain problems plaguing transportation logistics companies. By learning more about these issues, you can discover how your company can improve logistics efficiency, allowing your team to do the job more effectively than ever before.

Keep reading to learn more about the cargo transportation issues that logistics companies are facing and discover how you can fix these problems.

Identifying Key Supply Chain Challenges

There are several main reasons that the logistics industry is facing supply chain problems. By understanding the cause of these issues, your company can better understand how to mitigate the impact of these various causes.

The first reason that there are supply chain problems is due to a lack of drivers. According to a study published by the American Journal of Transportation in 2023, more than 80,000 drivers were needed that year to make up for a shortage of drivers in America.

Unfortunately, it’s predicted that this issue will only get worse as time goes on. Experts predict that by 2030, there will be a lack of 160,000 truck drivers.

The impact of this issue cannot be fully understated, as without drivers, there’s no way logistics companies can efficiently distribute goods. Because of this, many companies are providing excellent salaries and robust benefits to attract drivers.

The logistics industry is also confronted with logistics disruptions because of global events. For instance, the COVID-19 pandemic wreaked havoc on the supply chain due to global shutdowns and increased consumer demand for items shipped directly to their homes because of closures. Because of this, there were significant freight management issues that made getting products distributed across the country difficult.

Lastly, another logistics issue is increased operational costs. With fewer drivers, companies must increase salaries to be competitive and attract top talent. Because of this, operational costs increase, as companies have to charge clients higher rates to afford to pay their drivers.

All of these supply chain issues have spelled trouble in the trucking industry. However, with the help of the right technological solutions, the woes related to supply chain issues can be reduced significantly.

Technological Solutions to Streamline Operations

The good news is that there are technological solutions that can help companies streamline their operations and improve efficiency. Let’s walk through these solutions now so you can better understand what’s available to help.

The first is artificial intelligence or AI. Your company can adapt artificial intelligence as it allows for route optimization.

With the assistance of AI, your fleet can work more efficiently as it can gain actionable insights into the best way to tackle their task. This enables your team to make timely deliveries as quickly as possible, thus saving money.

Next up, your fleet can utilize IoT (Internet of Things) devices, which allow for real-time tracking and inventory management. This enables your team to gain clarity on the available inventory as well as where everything is.

Finally, there is blockchain technology that can help enhance transparency. With block train technology, data is stored in a database. That data, stored in blocks, is linked together in—you guessed it—a chain.

The reason blockchain technology is impactful is because it offers a transparent view of the information within your business’s network. For companies facing supply chain issues, transparency is everything.

Strategies for Mitigating Supply Chain Disruptions

The great news is that there are ways to mitigate supply chain disruptions. When you can successfully mitigate disruptions, you can deliver for your customers. And that can increase customer satisfaction.

The first way to do so is by partnering with reliable logistics providers with a competent fleet and a history of success. By working with a logistics provider that can get the job done adequately, you can rest assured that fewer issues will ultimately impact your customers’ ability to get the products they purchased.

Look for a provider that offers transparency into their processes and is communicative. By doing this, you can find freight shipping solutions that suit your needs. (You might even be able to find freight brokerage services in the same place!)

Next, you can diversify your supply chain networks. This is effective because if there’s a holdup in one part of the supply chain, you can still distribute goods to your customers. Finally, you want to ensure that you adequately invest in employee training and retention programs to ensure that no supply chain problems arise because of employee shortages.

Case Studies: Successful Supply Chain Management

One example of a successful logistics provider is GP Transco. GP Transco prides itself on keeping its rates reasonable, offering excellent service, and helping clients get products where they need to be and when they need to arrive.

According to PaperWorks’ Director of Logistics and Fiber Strategies, Jeff Russett, GP Transco could even do so throughout the pandemic by harnessing the power of technology and an excellent fleet.

“During the 2021 era of COVID, trucking rates went through the roof, and there was a lot of high-cost brokerage activity, and GP didn't gouge,” says Russett. “They kept their service, and they kept their rates normal. It showed strong partnership and dedication to our business model, and never forget that that's for sure. So, I hope GP will be here for a long time.”

You can find everything you need to know about choosing a trucking company with our helpful tips.

Looking Ahead: The Future of Trucking and Supply Chain Management

Despite the supply chain issues, there is a lot to look forward to within the trucking industry. Though there are challenges to be faced by the trucking industry, excellent technology enables trucking companies to make the most of what they have.

Most importantly, the future of the trucking industry lies in reliance and flexibility. If your fleet is able to be resilient in the face of challenges and stay flexible with a future that’s anything but straightforward, you can ensure that your team of asset-based carriers will seamlessly navigate whatever supply chain problems come their way.

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