The changing role of the ship agent

Ongoing dramatic change has been the hallmark of the shipping industry in recent years. In a time of heightened commercial pressures, unprecedented technological innovation and shifting macroeconomic realities, owners and operators face the challenge of an industry that seems to be in constant flux.
These shifts are forcing changes in the way shipping companies run their businesses. At the micro-scale, this may be through the introduction of new procedures or technological developments, such as blockchain or digital bills of lading.

Time to mitigate the risk of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit?

What happens on 29 March 2019 when the UK leaves the European Union is pretty much anyone’s guess, and it is this huge uncertainty over what form of Brexit we may experience at our borders that is putting the UK supply chain at great risk.
As the months tick by there is mounting danger that a ‘no deal’ will result in turmoil at our ports, with long queues of lorries parked-up at Dover and Calais, creating days of delays for freight in transit and causing shortages in the supply of vital goods and components to just-in-time manufacturing lines, retail stores, eng

The next wave of telematics value

Telematics has come a long way since the first rudimentary systems became prevalent on our highways just less than two decades ago.
The early telematics solutions were primarily used to monitor vehicle location, but the technology has come a long way in the past decade and is now much more sophisticated, creating significant opportunities for road freight operators.
Smart, software-driven telematics solutions are adding significant value, delivering timely intuitive information to transport professionals enabling them to act and reduce

Why fleet managers should still have faith in diesel

In the summer of 2017, the French government announced it would ban the sale of diesel, petrol and hybrid vehicles by 2040. The UK government made a similar public commitment not long after. While these announcements gave a clear endpoint for diesel, the fuel had been in the headlines for the wrong reasons for some time. Policymakers hadn’t anticipated the impact of nitrogen oxide emissions and other particulates when they offered significant tax incentives to buy diesel vehicles in the early 2000s.
Now sales of diesel vehicles are in rapid decline.

Automation and robotics on the rise

At the recent meeting of the United Kingdom Warehousing Association’s Warehouse Technology Group, the over-riding message for the logistics industry, which historically has relied on an increased labour force to meet the needs of new client contracts, is wake up and smell the coffee – automation and robotics are coming and you ignore them at your peril.
A number of factors are driving this trend and, of course, Brexit is one of them.
The combination of falling unemployment levels, minimum wage rises and a potentially reduced labour poo

Can training reverse a backwards attitude to the vehicle banksman?

Recent news articles have been awash with workplace accidents caused by reversing vehicles, and if you look at the facts, nearly a quarter of all deaths involving vehicles at work happen when a vehicle is reversing. This makes the job of a vehicle banksman, also known as a signaller or reversing assistant, a matter of life and death.
Proper training is about far more than turning up and getting a certificate.

Why freight forwarders need to work harder than ever to differentiate themselves in their business

The impact that Brexit will or won’t have on international trade and supply chains is inevitably dominating many of the conversations I am currently having with BIFA members.
The huge uncertainty on how trade arrangements and supply chains will change post-Brexit is making many freight forwarders nervous about the future, as are many of the macro-trends happening in the world right now.
There are other challenges the freight and logistics industry faces including everything from the impact of technology and the state of the global econ

How digital disruption is influencing the forklift rental market

Digital disruptors are influencing every aspect of business in every vertical, whether it’s shaping growth, inspiring change or prompting new business models, the digital world is one that shows no signs of slowing. The implications for all sectors are significant and the logistics and materials handling market is no different.

How to build supply chain resilience

Over recent weeks the mainstream media has been full of stories about global fast-food retailer, KFC, running out of chicken, or more specifically not being able to supply the right amounts of chicken to the right places.
This was a classic supply chain interruption on a massive scale. KFC had just switched its logistics supplier from specialist food supplier Bidvest, to global delivery giant DHL.

Are spiralling diesel costs linked to insolvency spike?

Every year the Freight Transport Association produces many pages of advice and information, all designed to help our members manage their businesses as successfully as possible. As we move into spring, two trends have been standing out; the continued increase in fuel prices and a dramatic rise in freight companies going bust.
At the start of 2018, the price of a barrel of crude oil had gone up by around 17 per cent compared to the same time the previous year.