Great visit with Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) team to discuss how Riverside Logistics benefits from its membership. Thanks to Ann Reinke, CEO for visiting with her team to learn more about “Why” Riverside is a member of TIA. Also, received some good information from Matt Evans, Director of Marketing and Communications and Paul Leahy, Director of Membership on upcoming events to better serve its members. We are fortunate to have an advocate like TIA striving to better serve our membership.
Let’s see why or why not. Riverside Logistics a third-party logistics company (3PL) has considerable buying power in the freight markets for Less-Than-Truckload (LTL), Parcel and Truckload. We also have a significant presence in the Richmond, VA market handling local container drayage, warehouse and plant shuttles and short-haul dedicated moves. We have a strong local following of carriers. We also have a broad portfolio of LTL carriers that can be applied to any Origin/Destination set.
But we are not an omni-budsman (handle anything) Third Party Logistics Company (3pl). Although we’d like to think that we are very good at what we do, we are not one-size fits all 3PL. If you meet most or all of the following criteria, then you are a great candidate for a partnership with Riverside Logistics. If not, then maybe it’s better to just be friends and move on.
- If your company or your branch revenue is between $5 and $100 million in yearly sales.
- If you really don’t have a transportation department per se.
- If the decision-making is done locally not centrally when the company has more than one location.
- If you need both Richmond-based warehousing AND transportation management to go with it.
- If your freight spend for all modes of transport is between $150,000 and $3 million annually.
- If you use a consolidator like FedEx or UPS to handle all your LTL and parcel and (even) your FTL moves.
- If you have no technology platform to tender, route, cost, or track LTL or parcel shipments.
- If you can’t create a digital Bill of Landing (BOL) that ties orders to carriers and provides a full data set.
These criteria are benchmarks. We have found in the 25 years we’ve been in business, that companies who “fit” the above criteria do very well in partnership with us. Our overall book of business includes smaller and larger companies, so the above would not exclude you from being a candidate to work with Riverside. However, the above is definitely a “sweet spot” we found that works well. We do business with a lot of different clients with assorted wants and needs. There is no standard way of doing business, but rather key processes that work well across the demands for transportation and warehousing. We customize our solutions to meet the client’s needs and incorporate technological solutions to provide timely and effective answers for their daily transportation challenges.
How does technology fit into the equation? In the good old days manual routing guides were used by and for clients to handle their LTL and parcel shipments. Today Riverside has a robust technology platform that allows client’s to do their own routings. They can electronically tender, track and trace, cost, (and even pay invoices) using this system. It also allows for reporting and research of the data elements attached to each move over the life span of use. It’s a powerful tool that allows the data to be used timely and effectively on either a daily (short term) or long-term basis.
In today’s fast paced world having data is important; but having an experienced team to help you analyze, find efficiency’s and make decisions to add value is a strategic advantage. Supply chains have been disrupted and now more than ever the team of experienced people at Riverside Logistics may be able to help you navigate the faster pace of change. If you would like to talk to one of our representatives please call us at …804-747-7700 Option 4 or fill out a quote form online.
It has been a year since supply chains were disrupted due to Covid-19. Yet businesses are still being challenged due to consistent disruptions to product supply and/or demand. Inventories have continued to climb on some commodities while others cannot be purchased at any price. Companies have ordered earlier only to have product delayed by stockouts or transportation interruptions. Economic realities of the constant shift are becoming the norm.
Challenges are ahead for business that are stuck in the market flux. Companies continue to look for regional and local solutions to supply problems they have traditionally solved offshore. Creating a regionally based supply chain can provide options for a market that is in flux. Flexible solutions for storage and distribution are the advantages of a third-party logistics (3PL) firm ensuring that you can change with market demand.
Leveraging Virginia’s vast range of transportation modes and modern highway network is one option to differentiate your supply chain. The Virginia transportation network offers cost advantages by being able to reach over 50% of the US population in one day. Virginia continues to rank #1 as the best state for business which offers significant growth opportunities for companies needing a presence in this region.
According to Keith Hamlett, President of Riverside Logistics, “A 3PL partner can provide expertise for clients facing these challenging issues in the supply chain by offering flexible ways to diversify or expand your supply chain.” Here is a list of value-add services provided by 3PL companies.
People – A 3PL has experienced staff with distribution solutions experience and can provide the appropriate personnel customized for your environment. They have training solutions in place to help speed this process. This ensures your supply chain will be in place quickly.
Warehouse Space Available – Experienced 3PL’s have warehouse space they can modify for your specific needs. Special certifications can be provided for food, pharmaceuticals, hazardous materials, or other unique markets. Usually, 3PL’s will have multiple locations offering flexible solutions for your product.
Transportation Solutions – An advantage of working with a 3PL company is they have a broad array of freight service options. Truckload, Less-than-Truckload (LTL), Small Package and container drayage are just a few of the modes that can be considered. Utilizing the right service can save you money.
Technology – Specialized software can be expensive to purchase and implement. Utilizing a 3PL’s Warehouse and Transportation Management systems to minimize your distribution costs is smart. Access to real time data such as orders, inventory status, competitive transportation rates and other metrics speeds information flow to you and your customers.
Supply Chain Strategies – Partnering with a 3PL can provide you with expertise and guidance to secure your supply chain and focus on your company’s goals – not just right now but for the future.
Listening to the news the other day I was struck by the fact that there is a Cabinet Level position for Transportation, rather than for Supply Chain. Do not get me wrong, transportation is important, it provides time and place utility to everything. Whatever we make and consume is impacted by our transportation system. But why isn’t there a Secretary of Supply Chain, rather than a Secretary of Transportation? There is a difference. Supply Chain encompasses the entire spectrum of activities surrounding the movement of goods. We are talking storage, transportation, regulation, infrastructure, technology, and much more. Managing a supply chain in today’s world has become more important and more complicated than ever.
What is the Supply Chain? Let’s start with what it is not. It is not the demand for goods and services. It is not the manufacture or development of products, processes and services. What is it? It’s the manifestation of all the physical aspects of satisfying demand thru the physical movement and storage as well as the information flows, data accumulation, analysis, decision-making and use of this information to move, store, deliver, and pay for demand.
Economics revolves around the relationship of Supply and Demand. Supply Chain revolves around the components associated with Supply to support Demand. One fifth of the world’s economy is tied up in SUPPLY CHAIN activity. One fifth!! It’s important and impactful to just about everything and as trade continues to become more global, so does the supply chain.
Here is a current example of how important the supply chain can be. It also shows how many touch points and how many things need to go right, for it to function effectively. Riverside Logistics, as a third-party logistics company based in Richmond, Virginia, manages the distribution of goods for a number of companies in the medical supply business. In the current pandemic environment, these companies are manufacturing and selling the masks needed by everyone to protect themselves. These masks consist of materials that are sourced from many countries across the globe. These sources are tapped into to provide the raw materials to create masks. The paper, the fabrics, the elastic, etc. These materials are “sourced”, then “procured”, then “shipped” to a manufacturing location, then combined into a mask, then stored until ordered, then shipped, then delivered, then re-shipped, then purchased and finally (then) used by a consumer or end-user. Possibly, even sent into a reverse-logistics system and sent back somewhere for destruction or re-purposing. Is your head spinning yet? All the pieces of this process are part of a “chain” of events, with many moving parts, involving “supply”. Each link in the chain is a distinct and necessary piece of the overall creation of time and place utility relevant to the goods being made.
Obviously, the Supply Chain is important. How well it functions from a cost, service and capability standpoint determines the overall quality of the “Chain”. Usually the utility of the “chain” is derived from the tradeoff between cost and service. “When” and the “How Much” are key decision-making components considered in the Supply Chain. However, there are other equally important aspects to the chain. Their importance depends on the goods in question, their value, the time of year, the criticality of speed to market and many other important factors.
Supply Chains can be relatively simple or they can be quite complex. There are a myriad of rules, regulations and practices that revolve around executing a quality supply chain. That undertaking can be quite substantial. A third-party logistics company usually can provide services that improve your supply chain, because that is their area of expertise. They review many complex supply chains in whole or in part depending on the client, their business practices and the role where they can provide value. The key is to improve the supply chain and to provide a client with a competitive edge. Clearly a well-executed supply chain can have a substantive impact on the client’s ability to maintain a strong competitive posture in their business environment. You can make the best products in the world, but they have no value if you cannot get them to the end-user when they need them. Time and Place utility!!