Wednesday, October 21, 2020
From slumps to surges, the past year has brought anything but certainty to the logistics industry. Yet just as carriers are seeing an across-the-board uptick in demand, a reported shortage of truck drivers could pump the breaks on recovery efforts.
According to Business Insider
, two major industry declines — first in 2019 and then again in the spring of 2020 — prompted tens of thousands of truck drivers to jump ship. Many of those drivers likely aren’t coming back, lured away by other career options or retirement. Some trucking companies and schools are stepping up recruitment efforts
. But as seasoned drivers know, it’s not the life for everyone — and getting a foothold can be a challenge for new drivers.
The result? Trucking rates are booming, particularly in the spot market, which is great news for carriers. But shippers are scrambling to find capacity, prompting even Amazon to upend its transportation strategy
. Independent freight broker agents are caught in between as they seek to connect shippers with carriers while navigating market volatility.
At USL, we see this as an opportunity for carriers to grow their business quickly and for agents to differentiate themselves in a highly competitive market. Here are three ways we are helping carriers and freight agents make the most of this period of uncertainty:
With today’s available technologies, there’s no reason the carrier onboarding process should be painful. We offer several options for fast and easy setup, including through our online portal. The streamlined process eliminates needless steps and downtime so that agents can put new carriers on loads that much faster. And with direct deposit, quick pay options, and priority factoring, carriers can improve their cash flow.
Our focus on flexibility and efficiency makes it easier for our agents to find carriers. Not only do we have more than 80,000 carriers in our system, but we are adding to our database every day. Having a large pool of available and qualified carriers helps everyone in the 3PL chain — shippers, agents, and truckers — maintain balance during extreme downturns or upsurges in demand.
Reliable, 24/7 support
Our agents have a team of logistics experts to fall back on to get a rapid response and make setups go as smooth as possible. At a time when driver detention time is on the rise at both shippers and consignees
, every minute counts. In response, we have stepped up our communication with our agents so they can convey real-time information to their shippers and carriers. This focus on personal attention, combined with streamlined operations and seamless coordination, mean haulers spend less time waiting and more time moving.
In this together — for the long haul
“We are in this together” has become such a familiar refrain that it may well be the official catchphrase for 2020. But in terms of moving freight, it couldn’t be truer. At USL, we are always on and ready to meet your needs at your pace, so you can focus on keeping the country running.
To learn more about how USL creates more opportunities for agents and carriers, visit uslfreight.com