What Businesses Should be Paying Attention to in Transportation
There are countless aspects of running a business, even in the best of times. In a world turned upside down by a global pandemic, running a business has become even more complicated. No matter your industry, you must swiftly adapt to a drastically altered business landscape.
For many business owners, shelter-in-place mandates and social distancing regulations have led to a drastic reduction in revenue. Small businesses have been especially affected: A recent study determined that the total number of working small business owners decreased by 22% between February and April 2020. It is the largest such drop ever recorded in the United States.
But those sobering numbers don’t have to be the end of the story. Instead of ending up as just another failed business statistic post-COVID, embrace technological innovations and consider previously overlooked aspects of your business. Specifically, how often do you factor in your supply chain when looking at your overall business picture?
Your shipping costs, product accessibility, and more are vital to business planning, especially as you navigate the complicated waters of commerce and economics in a post-COVID world. The good news for forward-thinking entrepreneurs and business owners is that there are some exciting technological advancements happening in transportation. By staying at the forefront of transportation innovation and trucking technology, from dash cams to onboard communication devices, you can set your business apart and perhaps even boost your bottom line.
Innovations in Trucking Technology
As you look for ways to streamline your supply chain in an effort to cut costs, trucking should be at the forefront of your mind. After all, trucks transport the bulk of the nation’s freight, by a wide margin. According to the American Trucking Associations, 72.5% of all freight moved in the U.S in 2019 was shipped via truck. Further, the trucking industry contributed more than $791 billion to the economy throughout that year.
The importance of trucking to the U.S. economy can’t be understated, which is why you should give it your full attention. Keep in mind that you must be constantly vigilant in this regard, as shipping and freight costs aren’t necessarily going to be fluid. Myriad factors can influence the price you’ll have to pay, and these events are typically unexpected. For instance, the overhaul to the U.S. postal service in July 2020 resulted in nationwide shipping delays.
Rising fuel costs are yet another aspect to consider in terms of shipping costs. The price of crude oil is steadily rising worldwide, leading many business leaders to seek alternative solutions in regard to fuel. Many of these solutions are sustainable as well as more efficient, providing a win-win from both an environmental and fiscal standpoint.
Whether you have your own fleet or outsource your freight to a dependable third party, it’s imperative that you do everything in your power to reduce fuel consumption and costs.
Regarding Public Transportation
Unpredictable events such as a sudden viral pandemic and unexpected heat waves can throw a wrench into your supply chain, causing a ripple effect throughout your company. From a business standpoint, however, freight is just the beginning. You must also consider transportation’s role in society, and the ways in which transportation access affects your local economy. For instance, public transportation offers consumers unfettered access to goods and services, especially in dense urban areas.
Depending on where you live, the issue of public transportation can be of vital importance, pathetically overlooked, or somewhere in between. Generally speaking, urban areas require more frequent and comprehensive public transportation options than sparsely populated rural communities.
As of late 2019, public transportation ridership was on the rise, at least in the U.S. In the second quarter of 2019, Americans took 2.5 billion trips via public transportation, on buses, trains, and subway cars. Employees at every level of your business may rely on public transportation to get them to and from work. In this way, public transportation is crucial to both your livelihood and the long-term survival of your business.
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought the industry to a virtual standstill, so to speak. In order to propel the fledgling public transportation industry into a world drastically altered by global pandemic, we must turn to technology. Comprehensive public transport systems can cut business transportation costs and bolster local economies, while reducing traffic congestion and air pollution. Electric and autonomous vehicles are leading the charge towards transportation innovation, resulting in a safer commute for everyone.
Traveling Upward, Now and Into the Future
Re-launching your business after the pandemic can be a shaky process, rife with uncertainty. Thus, as we continue on an upward trajectory, post-pandemic, we must never lose sight of our goals, nor the mission of our business.
You must first face the modern business landscape without fear, and with the willingness to do what it takes. Finally, it would be a grave mistake to overlook transportation, and everything it represents. When you stay at the forefront of transportation innovation, and make technology work for you, your business is likely to prosper, long into the future.