Supply Chain Discussion: Four Industry Disrupters Impacting Logistics
Karen Jones is the executive vice president and chief marketing officer with Ryder, and in this interview she speaks about four big issues in the logistics arena: advanced vehicle technology, accelerating demand for e-commerce, asset-sharing for commercial vehicles, and digital technologies.
Advanced vehicle technology covers a multitude of applications, including electric vehicles, autonomous vehicles and other tools for achieving sustainability goals. Accelerated demand for e-commerce is a given in the omnichannel retail world, Jones says, adding that the trend shows no signs of slowing anytime soon.
The next trend she speaks of caught our attention: Asset-sharing for commercial vehicles. It mirrors what has happened in the housing market with Airbnb and other providers of temporary quarters, according to Jones.
“When a truck sits idle, why not monetize that asset?” - Karen Jones
The practice is occurring for everything from small vans to 18-wheelers, although progress with the latter is slower because of the need to allay concerns about security, and the large investments that are required to maintain the equipment.
We see this trend as potentially strengthening the networks of our suppliers, which works in our favor. Since we as a 4PL don't own a fleet of vehicles ourselves, having trucks sit idle isn't a problem for us. But anything that strengthens the networks of our suppliers, strengthens our own multi-customer multi-carrier network. That sounds like an opportunity for optimization, which is what we are all about.