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The Biggest Challenges for Logistics Providers in 2017 – in 7 Charts

In 2016, our annual global survey of logistics providers delivered a clear message: Logistics companies need to innovate to avoid generating new business by stealing each others’.

Fast forward to 2017, has any progress been made?

The ‘I’ word has been on the tip of everyone’s tongue over the last year and it isn’t just buzz, we’re starting to see results. One of the first indicators was in one of our hot trends surveys in mid-2016, showing that there isn’t just a keen appetite for innovation, it is being backed-up by investment.

We’ve since seen even more evidence that logistics is no longer the laggard it once was. After years of investments and process changes, shippers are starting to slowly recognize LSPs for their technology and innovation abilities.

Click image to access the 2017 Logistics Report

However, one of the key changes also seems to be the success of technology-driven logistics providers. Think Transfix or Flexport or Freightos. That is, asset-light logistics companies that utilize technology as the central offering of their business are gaining noticeable traction within the industry. The increase in the number of these types of companies as well as innovative solution providers (Bringg, project44, etc.) has gone hand in hand with the general technological advancements of the industry – perhaps even playing the role of a driver within.

Click image to access the 2017 Logistics Report

A conundrum is quickly taking shape though. For years, logistics providers have been trying to battle commoditization. But, while technological advancements and automation help businesses differentiate themselves, it also has a commoditizing effect on the industry. As automation becomes standardized across logistics businesses, it translates into both cost savings and price cutting.

Click image to access the 2017 Logistics Report

So while technology might facilitate commoditization, logistics providers are turning to non-traditional areas of their businesses to differentiate themselves. One area gaining early momentum is in terms of customer service. Is this the next area for growth/innovation in the logistics business?

Click image to access the 2017 Logistics Report

Come debate June 14-16, Chicago with all the key decision-makers in supply chain and logistics.

Writer : Haley Garner