Did you know that the roots of intermodal transportation dates back to the 17th century? Back then, coal was carried in containers via the Bridgewater Canal in North West England. Quote a lot has changed over time. Today, intermodal transportation stands as a crucial part in supply chain management. In this article, we examine some trends and challenges intermodal cargo industry is currently facing.
Sustainable and smart solutions.
Transport industry today focus heavily on eco-friendly options. Many clients go for sustainable and smart transport options over standard traditional methods. This remains true with regard to intermodal cargo carrying, which plays a crucial role in navigating the global transport structure to its current path. Presently, the market offers a variety of sustainable and smart alternatives for businesses focusing completely on environmental friendly handling of the items or goods to be transported.
Taking over traditional container/item handling
There is a prominent shift where intermodal cargo handling is achieving momentum over traditional road transport. In many parts of the world, particularly in Europe, countries are making significant investments in developing infrastructure. As roads and railway lines are becoming pretty sophisticated, many cargo companies now provide same shipment time for intermodal freight forwarding as traditional road transport. This makes it pretty challenging for traditional services to wrestle with sustainable and smart intermodal freight forwarding solutions. The growing demand for intermodal handling is primarily driven by Fast Moving Consumer Goods and automotive.
Transport companies find it hard to provide steady solutions
Despite of the sudden popularity in intermodal freight, any logistics company finds it hard to provide reliable services. Regardless of the rise in intermodal handling, supply chains display a lack of flexibility. Sudden strikes and ongoing construction continue to challenge the transport schedules of air, ocean and road cargo.
Shipments of smaller volumes
Transport industry is witnessing a trend where client book lesser volumes with a short notice. As companies focus heavily on flexibility in production to reduce inventory costs, the demand for consolidated and grouped shipments are rising. This also points to the overcapacity of the freight industry, forcing some jumbo container ships to be put out of operations.
High expectations on services
Digitalization is changing businesses today and the transport industry is no special case. As innovation turns out to be more sophisticated, clients expect an outstanding level of services including flexible and integrated IT systems. Multiple transport modes in multimodal cargo add to a perplexing and dynamic production network and information has turned into a fundamental part in effective supply chain management.