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Logistics Matters with DC VELOCITY

Business & Economics Podcasts

The editors of DC VELOCITY magazine bring you weekly updates on logistics, material handling, and supply chain news.

The editors of DC VELOCITY magazine bring you weekly updates on logistics, material handling, and supply chain news.


United States


The editors of DC VELOCITY magazine bring you weekly updates on logistics, material handling, and supply chain news.








Guest: Joe Ruddy of the Port of Virginia on maritime issues; Will trade wars with China bring manufacturing home?; Truckload capacity expected to remain tight.

In this episode, guest Joe Ruddy, chief innovation officer at the Port of Virginia, discusses how the maritime industry survived the rough seas of 2020 trade. Demand was light even before the pandemic, then fell off the cliff when Covid-19 struck, only to return with a vengeance in the latter part of the year. How did our nation's ports handle those changes, and what infrastructure is in place to keep goods flowing well in 2021 and beyond? The trade war with China is not expected to go away...


Guest: Tony Sciarrotta of the Reverse Logistics Association on handling returns; How to compete with industry disruptors; Changing the retail experience

In this episode, guest Tony Sciarrotta, executive director of the Reverse Logistics Association, shares how retailers are handling the deluge of holiday returns. Because of the ongoing pandemic, many purchases were made online instead of in-store during the holidays, so now retailers are faced with a deluge of returns this month. What are some of the strategies that are being used to process them and how can retailers reduce the number of returns they receive in the future? New Gartner...


Guest: Zac Rogers on logistics conditions in early 2021; Capacity remains tight for shippers; Assuring safety for container cargo

In this episode, guest Zac Rogers, assistant professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management at Colorado State University, discusses the current state of logistics, including capacity and pricing for transportation and warehousing. He also shares the latest Logistics Managers' Index figures and how they relate to what is happening in the market. Capacity remains tight in all aspects of transportation, including air, ocean, and trucking. What is driving this tight capacity and how are...


Guest: Kristi Montgomery of Kenco on the importance of innovation; Problems with our cold chains; New roads ahead for transportation.

In this episode, guest Kristi Montgomery, vice president of Innovation, Research & Development at Kenco, discusses the need for innovation. She heads up the Kenco Innovation Labs, an internal think tank and testing center that develops new technologies and methodologies to help solve customer problems within the supply chain. She discusses why innovation is so critical to a company's future. While vaccines are being rolled out, we learn about new research that shows how inefficiencies and...


Guest: Kevin Paramore from Yale on technologies for social distancing in facilities; Carriers reach their capacity breaking points; What emerging technologies will have a lasting impact in years to come?

In this episode, guest Kevin Paramore, emerging technology commercialization manager at Yale Materials Handling Corp., shares new technologies that promote social distancing within facilities. As we continue through the pandemic, it is important to safeguard our workers while still remaining productive. These new technologies alert workers whenever they get within six feet of distance with another co-worker. They also provide data for contact tracing. We knew that shipping volumes would be...


Guest: Phil Rich of Sweetwater on his company's holiday season preparations; Transportation continues to be a volatile sector; and shippers prepare for the Brexit deadline.

In this episode, guest Phil Rich, chief supply chain officer and senior VP of Sweetwater, talks about being an online retailer during a very different holiday season. Sweetwater is the nation's largest e-tailer for musical instruments and audio equipment. Increasing inventories and gaining better visibility with suppliers were key steps the company has taken. He also is preparing for a higher level of returns in January. Transportation continues to be a very volatile sector of the supply...


Guest: Kevin Doucette of C.H. Robinson on Global Trade; Automation is spurring industrial real estate; Volatility continues in the truckload freight sector.

In this episode, guest Kevin Doucette, North American Director of Trade Policy and Compliance for C.H. Robinson, discusses global trade in light of tariffs, the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. presidential election, and the stagnant worldwide economy. What areas should supply chain managers focus on when looking at global markets? Industrial real estate continues to be in demand, especially in urban markets, as companies look to move their supply chains closer to end customers. Automation is...


Guest: Colin Yankee of Tractor Supply on how his company has excelled during the pandemic; Some challenges await Covid-19 vaccine distribution; A new building boom for logistics facilities.

In this episode, guest Colin Yankee, chief supply chain officer at Tractor Supply, shares how his company has been able to thrive in the midst of the pandemic. As an essential business, this retailer offers the goods that people need. But beyond that, the company made some strategic changes in its supply chains to meet changing customer requirements and the different ways goods are sold and distributed today. There is a lot looming for the new Biden administration once the president-elect...


Guest: Rebecca Brewster of ATRI on what worries the trucking industry; Prop 22 passes in California and may impact gig deliveries; New logistics numbers show a surge in economic recovery

In this episode, guest Rebecca Brewster, president and COO of the American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI), shares the findings of her organization's recent study, the 16th Top Industry Issues Report. This report from the trucking industry's research association shows that executives are concerned about driver shortages, insurance rates, parking availability, and more. Listen to find out what issues impact the industry the most. Prop 22 passed in California on Tuesday. It defines...


Guest: Steven Horwitz of Ball State University on a holiday retail season like no other; Warehouse availability tightens; Logistics firms invest in venture capital markets

In this episode, guest Steven Horwitz, an economics professor and director of the Institute for the Study of Political Economy at Ball State University, joins us to discuss the upcoming holiday shopping season. We already know it will be a season like no other in history, due to the pandemic. But how will this affect supply chains, and will the community mall survive? We also look at recent reports on warehouse utilization and the tightening of the market for available warehouse space. Will...


Guest: Drew McElroy of Transfix on last-mile freight; Retailers prepare for peak; New options to handle returns

In this episode, guest Drew McElroy, chairman and co-founder of Transfix, a digital freight matching system, discusses freight markets and the challenges of last-mile deliveries. We are already entering the peak holiday shopping season, and it will be a year like no other, with omnichannel sales dominating in ways never before seen. How are retailers preparing their supply chains to handle the surge? And with more online shopping, retailers expect an avalanche of returned merchandise. We...


Guest: Dr. Yossi Sheffi of MIT discusses The New (Ab)Normal; The growing demand for warehouse automation; Who will work in our supply chains in the future?

In this episode, guest Dr. Yossi Sheffi, a professor of engineering and director of the Center for Transportation and Logistics at MIT, discusses his new book, The New (Ab)Normal. Dr. Sheffi looks at which companies have been successful during the pandemic and which have failed, as well as what the future holds for our supply chains. We also examine the growing demand for warehouse automation. The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated automation projects. What's driving the demand and how are...


Guest: Gillan Hawkes on robotics for distribution; A surge in logistics activities; How retailers use marketplaces to reach customers

In this episode, guest Gillan Hawkes, VP of product management and analytics at 6 River Systems, discusses how autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) help distributors meet surging demand, while offering other benefits during the pandemic and beyond. The new Logistics Managers' Index is out, and it shows a huge spike in logistics growth. Does it foretell a busy and possibly chaotic holiday peak season this year? And we look at how retailers are relying on marketplaces to handle their online sales...


Guest: Ron Dutt on lithium-ion battery technology; How Amazon's Prime Day may affect shippers; Moving toward sustainable supply chains

In this episode, guest Ron Dutt, CEO of Flux Power, discusses lithium-ion battery technology, which is growing in use as a power source in fork lifts and other industrial trucks. Amazon's Prime Day is just around the corner. Why was it postponed from its normal summer schedule and what will it mean for shippers and customers? And environmental sustainability is becoming a greater focus of supply chain managers. What is driving all of the attention? Articles and resources mentioned in this...


Editors' roundtable discussion on CSCMP EDGE; Social Responsibility and Diversity in the supply chain; Creating a more resilient supply chain; How Target became a major e-commerce player; Shippers find creative ways to get around a capacity crunch

In this episode, editors from DC Velocity and CSCMP's Supply Chain Quarterly share their experiences at CSCMP EDGE, which was held this past week. This year's conference was completely virtual and marked the largest such virtual event ever held in our industry. We discuss the format and environment used to present more than 100 educational sessions, keynote addresses, and a virtual trade show known as The Supply Chain Exchange. Our editors also discuss some of the major topics and themes...


Guest: Randy Guillot of ATA on National Truck Driver Appreciation Week; E-commerce shopping continues to surge; The nation's ocean ports see a solid rebound.

This is National Truck Driver Appreciation Week in the United States. In this episode, guest Randy Guillot, chairman of ATA (American Trucking Associations) shares about the vital role truck drivers play in keeping goods moving during trying times. Everyone knows that e-commerce shopping continues to surge, but now we have the numbers to prove just how much growth this sector has experienced with in-home shopping. And our nation's ports have made a nice rebound following a couple of very...


Guest: Chris Wolfe of PowerFleet on new sustainability standards; Risk mitigation gets a fresh look during the pandemic; Supply chains begin to brace for a vaccine rollout

In this episode, guest Chris Wolfe, CEO of PowerFleet, discusses how we have seen new sustainability initiatives during the pandemic that have created efficiencies and may become standards in a post-pandemic world. We also discuss how executives are reassessing their risk mitigation strategies in light of a pandemic that no one was prepared to meet. How good was their planning, and what should they do in the future? And we look at the challenges that the logistics industry will face in...


Guest: Brian Thompson of SMC³ on the LTL market; Capacity remains tight; CSCMP EDGE goes virtual

In this episode, guest Brian Thompson, the chief commercial officer at SMC³, discusses what the transportation markets may look like through the end of the year, and in particular how the Covid-19 pandemic has affected the LTL (less-than-truckload) segment. Capacity for both trucking and air freight remains very tight as we navigate the pandemic. How long will it be before we see more capacity entering the market for shippers? And CSCMP EDGE is going virtual this year. Diane Rand, managing...


Guest: Phil Evers of the University of Maryland discusses the difficulties facing the USPS; Hurricane Laura left destruction in its wake affecting supply chains; Interest in TMS is on the rise during the pandemic

In this episode, guest Phil Evers, a logistics professor at the University of Maryland, shares why the United States Postal Service is facing financial difficulties and what can be done to fix it. How might this affect the agency's parcel services? We also talk about how supply chains will be affected by Hurricane Laura. Some changes in anticipated landfall and other disruptions are expected in the devastation that Laura left behind. And shippers are taking a fresh look at transportation...


Guest: Patrick Penfield of Syracuse University on Amazon moving into vacant mall space; Some shippers move toward smaller regional parcel carriers; New training initiatives assure a steady pipeline for frontline logistics workers

In this episode, guest Patrick Penfield, an assistant professor of supply chain practice at Syracuse University's Whitman School of Management, discusses how Amazon will be moving into vacant mall spaces to create mini distribution centers. We also examine a growing trend of some shippers moving away from the major parcel carriers and toward smaller, regional carriers. And despite high unemployment numbers in the general workforce, the logistics industry still finds it difficult to find...