The logistics and transportation industries are going through many changes as consumer needs evolve. We saw changes in the first part of 2016 and wanted to take a few moments to discuss what we see happening in the last six months of the year.

First, let’s look at common trends so far in 2016.

Drone usage-Unmanned aircraft or “drones” are increasing in warehouse usage and with some changes by the FAA, are now possible for some types of commercial uses. We foresee that some companies will research ways to use drones to increase their delivery capacity without increasing human capital. We continue with our resistance towards drones because of their limited capabilities and our desire to provide personal customer service.

Smaller loads-It used to be that companies who were shipping items would wait until a load was full before sending a truck or plane. With the increase in short delivery times, we’re seeing a drastic increase in “LTL,” otherwise known as less than load. On one hand, we see this trend continuing as companies strive to reach customer demand for quick access to products. However, it’s possible that the demand increases so much that the loads are easier to fill before going out.

Load sharing-The bigger companies like FedEx and UPS rely on smaller 2PL and 3PL providers like On Time Logistics to perform last mile services. By sharing the load for deliveries, companies all along the supply chain can increase their ability to meet customer needs without increasing their individual costs as much.

Spreading out the supply chain-Just like the idea of sharing the load, the idea of spreading out the supply chain helps make it easier for companies to serve their customers. This idea speaks to building more, smaller warehouses or shipping houses throughout a region instead of creating one big centralized location. This also helps increase security within the supply chain. This trend is somewhat of a catch .22 in that it’s a wise move for flexibility and security, but land for warehousing and shipping is at a premium in a growing number of places. Perhaps this will be less of an issue as the locations being constructed need a smaller footprint than their larger warehouse predecessors.

What trends are you seeing in your industry? Are you needing a reliable logistics and warehousing provider? On Time Logistics services the Northwest Arkansas, Little Rock and Tulsa areas.