Blog International Freight Shipping

Surviving U.S.-China Trade War Requires Savvy Logistics

Surviving U.S.-China Trade War Requires Savvy Logistics By Dan Cser ICAT Logistics, Agency Owner At the border entries and docks along the front lines of the China-U.S. trade standoff, hostilities are more than a war of words. Tit-for-tat tariff salvos between the two nations have complicated the ever-demanding work of freight forwarders, shippers and logistics professionals, producing significant casualties in terms of conflict, confusion, complexity, cost and consequences. Still possible but far from certain: Compromise and conclusion. While President Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping have agreed to meet in November, few observers predict a tariffs-ending breakthrough. “The problem is neither side seems to be confident that it understands the other side’s bottom line negotiating demand,” Michael Pillsbury, director of the Center on Chinese Strategy at the Hudson Institute told The Washington Post. Meanwhile, logistics managers are being put to the test, causing customers to rely more than ever on savvy forwarders with proven experience,…

Logisitics Gets Reboot from Robots

Logisitics Gets Reboot from Robots There’s a joke going around the Internet that reflects our brave new world of robots. A robot walks into a bar, orders a drink and lays down some cash. The bartender says: “Hey, we don’t serve robots.” And the robot says, “Oh, but someday you will.” The point is: Robots are here to stay. That’s especially true in logistics, where their use is increasing rapidly. All along the supply chain, forward-thinking decision-makers have stepped up the cadence for embracing, deploying and adjusting robots. Suspicion and anxiety about the disruptive potential of robots have been diminished by the enthusiasm of logistics leaders determined to use automation to manage change. Along the way, the impact of robots has evolved well beyond familiar experiences in warehouses, where robots have replaced humans in picking and sticking cargo. Now, robots are working hand-in-hand – so to speak – with humans to yield significant and creative gains in safety, productivity and job satisfaction.…

Don’t Become a Victim of the “Fast, Easy” Quote

Don’t Become a Victim of the “Fast, Easy” Quote Some supply chain managers would like to believe that an internet price check is a quick and practical way to find a freight hauler who will save them time and money.  After all, it seems so easy. All you have to do is type in what you’re hauling and where it’s going and just like that some stranger will hook you up with a trucking or sea-going company that is willing to accept your check. No fuss, no bother – at least until your shipment is packed incorrectly, left sitting in a warehouse, sent with improper documentation, delayed when another internet customer took priority, or stuck because a customs officer didn’t understand the bill of lading.  That’s how some supply chain managers learn a lesson the hard way: Shortcuts can lead you to a dead-end. That’s because operators out there lure you in with a low quoted price that ultimately costs a bundle. With some freight forwarders, anything can happen from the time the cargo is picked up.  The supposed quick and easy solution…

In Difficult Times, Our Industry Rises to the Challenge

In Difficult Times, Our Industry Rises to the Challenge In the logistics and freight delivery business, finding solutions to the challenges of our clients is all in a day’s work.  Recently, however, three names in the news have pushed many in our industry to abandon normal protocols and find new ways to deliver the goods. By now the names are familiar to anyone with a TV or access to the news:  Harvey, Irma and Maria — a trio of devastating hurricanes.  They closed shipping routes, blocked highways, flooded warehouses and cut off the routine supplies of goods that are the basic necessities for millions of people in Texas, Louisiana, Florida, the Caribbean and most recently Puerto Rico, where the destruction was historic and the continuing challenges have been monumental. Now, in this difficult time when the stakes are highest for the people we serve, our ability to improvise and innovate is not just essential, it is critical, and sometimes a matter of life and death.  While much work remains to be done, we have heard of heroic shippers…

Logistics Decisions are Too Important to Make Alone

Logistics Decisions are Too Important to Make Alone Logistics Decisions are Too Important to Make Alone Researchers tell us that on average, adults make 35,000 decisions a day. Some are less consequential than others – oatmeal for breakfast, or eggs?  One egg or two?  White shirt or blue? Brown shoes or black?  Loafers or boots? Studies also note that as we assume greater responsibilities in our lives, we make more independent decisions that have consequences well beyond a menu or choice of clothing.  Children, for example, make about 3,000 decisions a day; adults nearly 12 times more. If you are a manager in a complex a supply chain organization, the consequences of your decisions have rippling impacts on others. That’s why it’s so important to consider the needs of others up and down the line and bring them into your decision-making process.  “Without transparency, communication and cooperation you create silos that can be damaging in a supply chain,” says Dan Cser, owner ICAT Logistics DTW.   “Networks of customers,…


HAVE A QUESTION ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS SHIPPING?
(Please note: We do not ship personal items)

Write us below or call us at 800-536-5571

Contact UsLoading...