The Logistical Lowdown

Compliments of your True Blue Logistics Crew

How 3PLs Help Shippers Find Better Spot Rates for Irregular Routes

Posted by Ryan Gilliland on 5/4/20 3:21 PM

In an ideal world, every one of a shipper’s loads would all be the same weight, have the same pickup times each day, and be between a very limited number of origin and destination pairs. Carriers love transporting this type of freight because it’s predictable. “Regular” lanes give carriers the ability to plan better, and as a result, earn consistent revenue and better manage their equipment and driver resources.

Ultimately this helps them manage their costs better, which can then lead to lower rates for their customers, too. Regular lanes also increase a carrier’s familiarity with the locations and products, which introduces more efficiency and better service to the entire logistics process.

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Topics: Transportation, Logistics

COVID-19 in the Supply Chain- What Shippers Should Know

Posted by Neil Hersh on 4/29/20 10:05 AM

As a mid-size trucking company that has been around for over 40 years, Keller has experienced our fair share of ups and downs in the industry. Through it all, we have been able to increase our diversification and expand our services for our customers. This diversification and expanded services have been critical in weathering the tough times. The current situation is unique in many ways and we all are affected, regardless of industry, and certainly some worse than others. With no real answers or experience on how a global pandemic will ultimately affect the supply chain in terms of longevity or what the “new normal” will look like, we can only share our experience with key patterns in uncertain financial times that diminish trucking capacity.

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Topics: Transportation, Logistics

Analysis: Business Insider Report on the HOS Suspension

Posted by guest writer, Kenneth Kowal on 4/15/20 10:09 AM

For the first time since 1938 when the hours-of-service (HOS) laws initially went into effect, the Federal Motor Carrier Association (FMCSA) temporarily exempted truck drivers transporting essential medical equipment and supplies on a federal level. This response is typical on a state or local level for emergency situations, like the current COVID-19 pandemic, because of the sheer amount of goods trucking companies are responsible for moving.

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Topics: Transportation

Four Things That are Leveraged When Working With a Freight Broker

Posted by Neil Hersh on 4/6/20 2:25 PM

Many shippers question whether or not they should leverage the resources of a freight broker. But the answer is never simple because it will depend on several different factors.

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Topics: Transportation

What's causing trucking companies to go bankrupt?

Posted by Nate Schaublin on 3/12/20 11:56 AM

 

What the truck is going on? 

Trucking bankruptcies have been a hot topic over the past year, with several larger carriers such as New England Motor Freight, Falcon Transport, and Celadon ceasing operations and in some cases stranding drivers out on the road. In addition to these larger carriers, every week there seems to be another longstanding carrier with 30-plus years in business deciding that the business just wasn’t worth it anymore. What is going on and what do things look like moving forward?

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Topics: Transportation

Fuel Surcharges: How do they affect the supply chain?

Posted by Derek Drewes on 10/12/18 2:18 PM

A fuel surcharge is a way of adjusting the amount paid to move freight by considering significant variation in fuel prices, compared to historical data. Fuel has a major impact on the supply chain and as a trucking company, we must be cognizant of what the market is doing and how it is going to affect the cost of diesel. There are four main components that contribute to the retail price of a gallon of diesel fuel:

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Topics: Transportation

Understanding the Value of Dedicated Operations

Posted by Nate Schaublin on 8/10/18 2:14 PM

The topic of dedicated logistics operations, whether in transportation or warehousing and distribution, typically elicits an array of responses ranging from “why wouldn’t we just do it ourselves” to “I can’t imagine trying to do this ourselves”.

Truth is, dedicated operations aren’t for everyone, but for many small and mid-size manufacturers outsourcing these logistics functions to a 3PL allows the manufacturer to work on growing its core business and increasing the value provided to their customers.

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Topics: Transportation, Warehousing

6 Key Factors to Becoming A Shipper of Choice

Posted by Meredith Mickey on 5/18/18 2:32 PM


As the freight market continues to evolve and tighten, carriers can be more selective about the freight they accept. As a shipper, making your freight more favorable to carriers will ensure you have capacity when you need it most. 

By following payment terms, being flexible with delivery schedules, providing visibility to your carriers, being up front with expectations, providing driver amenities, and keeping the lines of communication open will make you a shipper of choice to your carriers and therefore, your freight is more likely to selected by a carrier when capacity gets tight.  

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Topics: Transportation, Logistics

4 Qualities of a Great Freight Partner

Posted by Aaron Keller on 4/27/18 1:25 PM

 

As a logistics professional for over 20 years, I've seen many changes take place on the transportation side of things.

Think back to the late 1990s; email was just starting to become mainstream in the business world, the internet was gaining popularity, and the smart phones we now rely on to get through our entire day was a pay phone; unless of course you were Zack Morris.

Business relationships were built on face-to-face interactions with open dialog about each party's pain points and strategies. The goal was working together to both become more efficient, and to be better suppliers to customers. 

Email, the internet, and of course our smart phones have easily made us all more productive. However, the face-to-face business interactions that now take place on our electronic devices make the idea of a partnership seem more like a one-way street.

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Topics: Transportation

How Under Utilized Trailers Impact Lane Pricing

Posted by Aaron Keller on 4/13/18 1:52 PM

As the Vice President of Sales at Keller Trucking, and the person who approves the rates for all of our truckload freight, I find it interesting how the use of dropped trailers at customers' facilities has increased over the years; and that shippers expect carriers to view the use of dropped trailers as just a cost of doing business.

The truth is that carriers prefer not to drop trailers, but we have to due to restricted shipping and receiving hours or the customers' lack of resources to unload and load efficiently. 

In today's market, a typical 53' van trailer can average as much as $28,000. Keeping your total costs at a minimum by utilizing that trailer as much as possible during its 5-year life span is of great importance.

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Topics: Transportation

Keller Logistics Group's industry experts share their thoughts on trends in the logistics industry. Subscribe to The Logistical Lowdown and have our latest blog post sent directly to your inbox, you'll never miss a post! 

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