As we begin to emerge from the depths of the COVID-19 pandemic, reflecting on 2020 reveals a year of unprecedented disruption. In the past year, we have seen steady business models wholly uprooted and entire industries shifted forever – including our global logistics supply chain. While the rapid adoption of technology has alleviated many of these disruptions, a continued lack of truck drivers, rising oil prices, and the unwinding of interconnected global supply chains, experts warn that disruption in the transportation industry will likely continue into 2022. Within this disruption, however, lies an abundance of opportunities. PRO believes a continued emphasis on relationships with customers (shippers) and carriers is the best preparation to navigate an uncertain future.
A Year of Challenges
Without a doubt, all participants in the supply chain have faced extraordinary challenges throughout the pandemic. Customers have struggled with pricing loads, ensuring on-time deliveries, and managing contracts with their logistics providers. Carriers and drivers have had their day-to-day lives uprooted with the closing of truck stops, bathrooms, and the uncertainty of loading and unloading times as shippers struggled to find applicable resources. In addition, due to the severity of COVID-19 and related disruptions, many drivers opted to stay home and spend time with their families instead of risking their health. This has further exasperated the driver shortage, adding upward pressure on rates to customers and increasing pressure on carriers to deliver timely loads. To weather these challenges, we have found that there is one strategy that has worked time and time again.
Relationships as a Differentiator
The past year has been difficult for every participant in the supply chain, but it has been an opportunity for logistics coordinators with long-term relationships to be differentiated. Despite these challenges, the supply chain has remained functional, with loads continuing to be delivered around the United States. A major cause of this synchronicity has been an increased emphasis on building and maintaining long-term relationships. Through each challenge – pricing, load times, contracts, etc. – working together allows everyone to have win win outcomes. By understanding customer and carrier needs, we can develop collaborative solutions to the many challenges presented by COVID-19 and future disruptions.
The PRO Promise
As your transportation and logistics advocate, PRO is proud to support our customers and carriers during this disruptive time. PRO pledges to deliver on your needs with superior customer service through deep data analysis, value-add service rollouts, advanced education and training, continuous investment and never losing sight of where we have been as we grow and move forward. PRO’s proprietary Waypoint program is designed to ensure a best-in-class experience for our customers and carriers – PRO promises to move with your needs so we all arrive at our destination of mutual success.