Case Study’s a Real Eye-Opener

More Efficiency, Ethical Behavior Needed in the Supply Chain

On the subject of shipping with an eye toward efficiency and long-term costs, here’s a business world “case study” that’s a real eye-opener.

A while back now, the asset-based carrier Zip Xpress Inc. – that’s us – had just opened all of Florida as a new service point. We were more than eager for lots of freight to fill our new schedules to the Sunshine State.

The case in point: A Florida-bound truckload weighing in at 4,000 pounds was posted on the DAT – the Internet “load board” where brokers can make posts for carriers to bid on business. Great. Zip’s quick bid on the job was the lowest, so we secured this “Truck Load” for our new service point. We were looking forward to rolling south with a snugly packed trailer of product.

Or not.

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Making the Best of the 3PL World

Lots of Third-Party Brokering is Inadequate, so Zip Xpress is Positively Partnering

All 3PLs are not created equal; that’s for sure.

Some serve their client companies quite well and work effectively with the carriers they hire to move product. Others? Not so much.

Less than professional practices from the middle ground of brokering can suck the best intentions right out of a shipper/3PL/carrier connection, and recent research on the subject backs that up: Read This

Only two to three years! That is the pitifully short life span of a shipper/logistics provider relationship. Of course, if those two parties are jumping ship that often, it’s bound to have a long-term, negative impact on building business relationships of trust, longevity, and shared visions of customer service.

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Will You Be Our Sales Leader for the Road Ahead?

Newly Created Director of Sales/Marketing for Asset-Based Carrier Zip Xpress

Are you looking for a great opportunity for growth, and for contributing to a strong company culture? Then you should join our team – our Zip Xpress family – of dedicated sales professionals and support staff.

You can Apply Here

Zip Xpress Inc. is seeking to fill a newly created leadership position within the company. Do you have the industry experience and personal motivation to face the challenges of management in the supply-chain marketplace?

We are a high-quality carrier with a longtime presence on the Midwest business scene. Offering a full range of product-transportation services, from LTL to Full-Truckload and Dedicated Long Haul needs, Zip Xpress has grown consistently over the years and now has created a key leadership position in sales and marketing.

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Dear CEO: Shipping Matters.…a Lot

A Case for the Front Office Getting a Crash Course in Shipping

Most company leaders and top managers are incredibly busy people, so they strive to delegate the details whenever they can.

That’s logical enough, but here’s a key concern about delegating responsibility before truly comprehending the details: A lack of thoroughly understanding the issues can cost you dearly down the road.

Shipping, of course, is what I’m getting at here.

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Sustainability is Everybody’s Business

Efficient, Effective, and Energy-Smart is Our Only Future

If you’ve been around the long-haul and regional carrier business for a while, you know that “steady as you go” just doesn’t cut it.

You know that change and growth are inevitable in this industry.

The only “survival mode,” in fact, is change and growth.

Want proof? A couple of big examples of that continuous challenge are staring all of us in the face:

  • Sweeping new rules in refrigerated products transport and handling
  • Electronic Log Device requirements for every carrier, large and small

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Jim….What? You Had a Problem With Us?

It Was Video-Shooting Day at StudioCraft, and the CEO Was Saying What?

  1. We were a little worried there for a minute.

What was Jim Peterson talking about now?

A problem with Zip Xpress?

We were here to shoot a “Raving Fan” video about a customer who liked us a lot and was willing to share the good feelings with others about the high quality and high efficiency of shipping with Zip Xpress.

And Jim Peterson, CEO of his company, StudioCraft, is starting to talk about a problem he’s had with us? Jim … what’s this?

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Dear Shippers: It’s Not Your Fault (Well, Maybe a Little Bit)

Industry-wide Loading Inefficiencies Hurt Everyone; They Even Disrespect Our Drivers

Question: What do these industry players all have in common?

  • The manufacturer that simply wants its product out the door and on its way, delivered on time and damage-free
  • The shipping department manager whose sole focus is the cheapest carrier today, right now, on this immediate delivery
  • The third-party logistics rep whose single-minded measure of success is moving the product down the road on the shipper’s timeline

Answer: With their narrowly focused, niche perspectives on the supply-chain process, they’re all part of a big problem.

They’re all contributing to huge inefficiencies that are costing “us” dearly … all of “us” in a North American economy that lives and dies by the truck.

We can do better.

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Trust, Track Record of Service, Personal Touch Always

To Build Business Friendships, Everything Matters … Every Single Time

‘All I have to do is pick up the phone, call them, and I’m taken care of on the spot’

Kelly Cutler-Shafer, Transportation Manager for Charter House Innovations – on working with Zip Xpress

Yes, facing the bright lights and a video crew made Kelly a little nervous. Actually, a lot nervous, she said.

When your daily work life revolves around your company trucks, the back-end docks, and all your drivers and loaders, well, being the star of a video shoot is a pretty weird way to start the day.

But thank you, Kelly Cutler-Shafer, for playing nice and letting us do a video of your company’s satisfaction with our shipping services.

Actually, you were awesome on camera, Kelly, and this linked Raving Fan spot proves it!

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Response to Recent Crain’s Article on ‘Driver Shortages’

Nice Try on Driver Shortages, But You Were Way Short of the Whole Story

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In order to serve the customer with efficient, fully optimized loading…it takes a spotless and well-organized facility. Chaotic, dingy, outdated shipping departments are way too common in our business. This is a photo of the ZipXpress facility in Holland, Michigan.

Shame on All of Us for Our Thoughtless, Inefficient Shipping Habits, Load After Load, Year After Year

Many thanks, Crain’s Guest Blogger Lisa Katz, for your thoughtful take on the very real challenges of making a top-dollar living as a driver. Earning those higher annual incomes in the business often means a serious commitment to time on the road. It’s no easy life, that’s for sure.

No thanks, however, Ms. Katz, for ignoring the elephant in the room when it comes to driver shortages. Even when drivers’ annual compensation ranges from good to great, the North American trucking industry will continue to experience shortages.

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Respect That Road Pilot, Please

‘Remember When We Honored Driving as a Worthy Public Service, Like Policing and Firefighting?’

Around Labor Day, the time of year when Americans honor the workforce in all its job types and places of employment, I challenge you to think about the men and women who help make our economy’s supply chain a reality.

It’s a fact … Drivers are a true driving force of our economy.

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