With the new year quickly approaching, the transportation industry will undoubtedly present a new (or evolving) set of challenges for leaders. From the increased emphasis on Big Data and TMS to 3D printing and anticipatory shipping, 2015 likely has much in store for the transportation industry. Let’s take a look ahead and uncover everything you need to know about the new year.
A Look at 2015 Industry Trends
While it is certainly difficult to look ahead and predict what will happen in such a fluid industry, it is possible to examine some of the current trends and imagine where they may lead in the coming months. Here are a few of the most noticeable trends and how they could affect shipping, logistics, and transportation next year.
- Diesel to natural gas. In October 2013, GE made news by creating a “strategic alliance to accelerate adoption of natural gas in the Trucking industry.” This came immediately after UPS committed to only purchasing natural gas-powered trucks in the coming years. As industry leaders continue to commit their fleets to natural gas, more small and medium-sized businesses will follow. While natural gas engines cost significantly more than diesel alternatives (about $35,000 more), the cost per gallon is between $1.50-$2.00 cheaper on average. The shift from diesel to natural gas will most likely continue throughout 2015.
- Intermodal growth. If the growth of intermodal shipping in 2013 and 2014 tells us anything, 2015 will see an explosion of demand for intermodal transportation. Not only is it cheaper and more cost effective; intermodal shipping offers more availability to more locations.
- TMS developments. Transportation management systems experience regular and significant growth each year. This upcoming year will be no different. As the shift to mobile continues to become increasingly commonplace and wearable technologies find their space, TMS will be forced to adapt to new demands. The good news is that it is capable of adapting and is merely waiting on other technologies to catch up.
- 3D printing. When 3D printing will finally takeoff is anyone’s guess. When it does, however, industry experts believe it will have a significant and positive effect on the transportation and shipping industry. From being able to produce small parts on the spot to creating products on-demand, 3D printing will enable businesses to increase agility and flexibility in the dynamic global marketplace.
- Anticipatory shipping. When Amazon secured its patent for anticipatory shipping on Christmas Eve of 2013, people immediately began discussing the possibilities. This algorithm-based system could conceivably ship products before they are even ordered. Whether it’s merely an idea or an actual plan remains to be seen, but 2015 will provide valuable insights.
At GTG Technology, we believe in looking at current trends and preparing for the future. As a result of this forward-thinking mentality, we have been able to consistently produce some of the most innovate and progressive transportation management software solutions in the marketplace. For more information on our products and services – including our newest TMS offerings –contact us today! Give us 60 minutes of your time, and we can show you from start to finish how our technologies work with a complimentary demo.