Steel tariffs: Efficient supply chain processes win

Man in protective clothing working in a steal factory

A recent American Journal of Transportation article stated that President Trump was set to impose tariffs on imported steel and aluminum (he has, in fact, done so), which caused a heated debate among global steel manufacturers, other U.S. manufacturers and a host of U.S. trading partners on how the tariffs will impact American businesses and consumers.

The topics of debate range from the importance of a strong domestic metal and steel industry to our national security, to the downstream pressure that higher metal and steel prices may have on U.S. manufacturers that rely on steel and aluminum for raw materials.

Regardless of the tariff’s impact, Transporeon believes that companies should focus on keeping costs down by improving efficiencies within their supply chain operations. This is a long-term strategy that keeps businesses competitive and continually improving, which leads to better profits and greater shareholder value.

Using transportation management technology within logistics operations will improve efficiencies, minimize cost to serve and increase customer service by:

  • Digitally connecting shippers and carriers for better collaboration, allowing businesses to compare rates and secure cost-effective movement of goods.
  • Helping to find capacity for shipping in a tight market, improving customer satisfaction by keeping goods moving.
  • Auditing freight bills for accuracy so the right amount is paid, since close to 10% of all freight bills are inaccurate.
  • Automating time-consuming tasks for shipment execution keeping admin time and costs down.
  • Optimizing freight movements with less empty runs and significantly reduced freight costs.
  • Planning and visibility of dock schedules eliminates wait times in loading/unloading, facilitates matching staffing needs and helps meet demand requirements.
  • Reducing retention times so trucks continue moving.
  • Continuously improving logistics operations with detailed reports on things like on-time delivery performance.

Using Transporeon’s transportation management platform, one U.S. steel products manufacturer is saving 40 percent year over year for the lanes it manages—enough to make significant strides towards lowering supply chain costs and off-setting price changes due to tariffs.

Photo credit: djwtwo on Best Running / CC BY-NC-SA

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