Across the globe, essential daily costs are inflating faster than an e-commerce van can show up to the house with that missing dinner ingredient. In a supply chain already strapped for capacity, the rising fuel costs add an unsettling outlook to the transportation industry. These challenges are even more apparent when fast is the name of the game, especially in construction logistics.
What Is Expedited Freight Service?
Expedited freight shipping is the transportation of materials or products that must reach their end destination faster than standard shipping. Different items require expedited freight logistics in its transportation, including live animals, food, liquids, pharmaceuticals, and hazmat substances. Additionally, customers may request expedited freight shipping when a previous order was damaged or lost or if a previously backlogged essential item is finally ready. The construction industry understands this value as basic materials have put new home builds 3-6 months behind schedule. When urgent shipping needs arise, shippers need to have freight broker partners that can swiftly find high-quality capacity.
Top Challenges in Managing Expedited Freight
So what is expedited freight’s top challenge? In short, there is no one answer. Multiple factors impact the effectiveness of getting time-sensitive freight to its destination. Although the rapid rise in fuel costs is getting the most fuel coverage, it’s essential to consider all of these challenges expedited truckload freight:
- Fuel Prices – U.S. Energy Information Administration records reveal that the nationwide average for on-highway diesel fuel prices jumped from $4.104 on February 28, 2022, to $5.205 on March 14, 2022. This two-week increase is half of the total price swelling between March 14, 2022, and March 14, 2021, of $2.059.
- Diminished Container and Carrier Capacity – The Wall Street Journal reported that “Hundreds of thousands of empty containers are filling marine terminals and truck yards across the Southern California region and tying up scarce trucking equipment as ocean carriers scramble to return empty boxes to factories in Asia.” The empty container crisis only magnifies the limited carrier capacity as the country rebounds from the global pandemic’s impact on manufacturing.
- Driver Shortage – The talent shortage in the supply chain has impacted flatbed freight shipping to rail transportation and more. Although expedited freight does not always require a specific endorsement, the urgent nature of the job requires those of integrity and experience.
How Different Types of Expedited Services Help and Impact the Supply Chain
Ultimately when a shipper or BCO requests an expedited freight experience, they have a specific goal: a specific time. While achieving this objective may have been straightforward in the past, the above challenges and many other localized supply chain disruptions have revealed a need for a variety of expedited services. Three of the most useful expedited resources are:
For those familiar with most shipping terms, team service is akin to dedicated service. This expedited freight method utilizes a team of resource trucks and drivers readily available for urgent shipping needs. By partnering with a team service, shippers can agree to lower, more consistent rates, reducing the price difference between expedited and standard shipping. Construction professionals and others who regularly deal with delays for their deadlines due to delayed materials benefit from this service.
Emergency and Peak Season Shipping Capabilities
Every shipper should be aware of the seasonality of the freight they transport. The peak produce-shipping season is very different from the peak season for toys and Christmas gifts. In areas of the nation with harsh winter weather, emergency shipping of weatherproofing materials might save building mid-renovation. Shippers who are strategic and proactive ahead of seasonal requirements for expedited freight shipping equip themselves with contract expedited services for related and unrelated freight emergencies.
Hot-shot delivery is an on-demand transportation option for shipments that need to move that day. This expedited freight option can make up for delays at port or when the material is as environmentally and time-sensitive as organ donations. Hot-shot delivery might even solve cross-border challenges or same-day construction equipment moves.
Enable Radical Visibility and Maximum Transport Procurement in Expedited Freight With Wicker Park Logistics
Regardless of the situation requiring the advancement from standard shipping to expedited shipping, the bottom line is that its shipper is on a deadline that high fuel prices or limited drivers can’t excuse. Although these challenges are real, shippers should have a broker in their corner who’s available to meet these challenges with integrity and creative solutions. If you want to learn how to add this type of expedited freight resource to your construction transportation team, ask an expert at Wicker Park Logistics today.