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West Coast and California Logistics Blog

Why Carriers are Stepping Away from Independent Truck Drivers in CA – and Why Shippers Should Care

Apr 11, 2019 / by Jerry Critchfield posted in Southern California Ports, West Coast Distribution, Port Logistics, Third Party Logistics, 3PL, Transportation Strategies, 3PL Outsourcing, Labor issues, Regional Logistics, Logistics Compliance, logistics in California

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Carriers are having a rough go of it as of late.  The truck driver shortage has left them scrambling to find new drivers to fill seats vacated by those retiring, leaving the industry, or switching jobs.  There just aren’t enough new drivers to fill the void. 

In most parts of the country, carriers can augment their company driver force with independent truck drivers (“owner-operators”) to fill in service gaps.  In California, however, this has become difficult due to regulations and landmark court decisions that alter the way drivers are classified in the state.  In this article, we’ll examine some of these and explain why the ramifications ultimately affect shippers just as much as carriers. 

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Let a 3PL’s West Coast Distribution Center Help You During the Driver Shortage

Jan 24, 2019 / by Robert Deiro posted in West Coast Distribution, Public Warehousing, Third Party Logistics, 3PL, west coast warehouses, 3PL Outsourcing, Regional Logistics, Distribution Center, Distribution, Warehouse

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The three states that border the Pacific Ocean are home to 48 million people, with the states just slightly inland adding millions more to the population of the “Western U.S.”  With such a sizable chunk of the U.S. population residing in these Western states, West region distribution is a vital part of the supply chains of companies whose products originate in the Central and Eastern U.S. 

In recent years, however, multiple factors – the truck driver shortage chief among them – have made long-haul truck runs to the West Coast increasingly unreliable and inefficient.  The response of many companies has been to focus less on shipping West and, instead, store products in a West Coast distribution center operated by a third-party logistics provider (3PL).

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The Importance of Scalability in ECommerce Order Fulfillment

Nov 29, 2018 / by Weber Logistics posted in Southern California Ports, West Coast Distribution, Third Party Logistics, 3PL, west coast warehouses, 3PL Outsourcing, eCommerce Fulfillment, Pick and Pack, Multi Channel Fulfillment

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Growing from 100 orders per month to 15,000 per month.  For most companies, that’s a dream come true.  But if you have the wrong solution in place for eCommerce order fulfillment, that’s a dream that may never materialize.  Here at Weber, this type of quick growth spurt can, and has, happened with eCommerce order fulfillment clients.  The only way to handle it is to have an operation that can seamlessly scale to meet the uptick in demand. 

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California SB 1402: What You Need to Know

Nov 15, 2018 / by Weber Logistics posted in Southern California Ports, West Coast Distribution, Third Party Logistics, 3PL Outsourcing, Drayage, 3pl contracts

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Does your logistics operation source drayage services in California?  If so, read on as new legal developments in the state can put you on the hook for damages if the drayage provider you hire is misclassifying employees as independent owner/operators.

This latest shot across the bow in California’s labor battles comes in the form of California Senate Bill 1402 (SB 1402).  The Bill was signed by Governor Brown on September 22, 2018 and will take effect on January 1, 2019.  In this article, we’ll summarize the new Bill and explain what it means for shippers and other companies that hire port drayage companies in the state of California.

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How to Reduce Your Chassis Rental Fee

Oct 18, 2018 / by Jerry Critchfield posted in Southern California Ports, West Coast Distribution, Port Logistics, Third Party Logistics, 3PL, 3PL Outsourcing, Drayage, Peak Season Shipping, 3pl contracts

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When considering all the costs involved in getting your containerized goods from port to market, it’s easy to think of all the “big” things that drive up your spend.  These big-ticket items include your ocean carrier, drayage, and warehousing costs. 

As your container makes its way through your supply chain, however, there’s a smaller – but cumulatively significant – cost that is likely eating away at your margins: the chassis rental fee.  In this article, we’ll examine key ways to reduce this fee and improve the profitability of your operation.

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Select an Asset-Based Carrier for Drayage to Speed Distribution

Sep 27, 2018 / by Weber Logistics posted in 3PL Outsourcing, Drayage, Distribution, supply chain cycle time

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Many companies will choose to have their ocean carrier perform “port-to-door” drayage services.  While this approach may be convenient, it can also be detrimental to your port-to-market distribution speed as it’s easy to become a small fish in a big ocean carrier pond. When you turn to an asset-based carrier such as a 3PL provider for drayage, its assets are as good as yours.

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FROM PORT TO MARKET: How to Speed Distribution of Asian Imports to West Coast Ports

Aug 23, 2018 / by Weber Logistics posted in Southern California Ports, West Coast Distribution, Port Logistics, Third Party Logistics, west coast warehouses, 3PL Outsourcing, Drayage, Northern California 3PL, Warehouse, supply chain cycle time

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There’s a new supply chain mantra in the post-Amazon era, and that mantra is SPEED.

Whether you are delivering to retailers or consumers, or both, customers want products faster in a more predictable time window.

If you import from Asia, your company has made a strategic decision to lengthen its supply chain to lower actual product costs. While you can’t control this decision, you can control how goods are transported and what happens once a container hits U.S. shores. It’s here that you can make a real difference to your company’s financial health by reducing supply chain cycle time and shrinking the cash cycle.

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Finding the Right 3PL Provider: Is Your Growth Journey a Logistics Dream or Nightmare?

May 17, 2018 / by Arlene Slivka posted in 3PL, 3PL Outsourcing, 3pl contracts

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It was a great day for your business – Costco agreed to carry your product, both in stores and online. Awesome!  

Your team worked hard for this deal and, after the celebration, you went home for some much-needed rest before starting to tackle this great new opportunity the next day with your current third party logistics partner (3PL).

That night, a vivid dream transports you to your desk the following morning. You call your 3PL provider to begin discussing a rapid ramp-up process for planned volume increases. But instead of excitement about the new opportunity, your 3PL instead expresses concern and tempers your expectations about what can be done and how fast.

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3PL Onboarding and Retail Compliance Requirements

Apr 27, 2018 / by Mimi Ma posted in Vendor Compliance, 3PL Outsourcing

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Whether it’s your first time outsourcing or you’re changing providers, partnering with a new third-party logistics (3PL) provider is an exciting time for your logistics operation.  It is a time for your weaknesses to be turned into strengths and for vital elements of your supply chain to be optimized.  As part of this, your 3PL will be focused on enhancing your performance in the eyes of your retailer partners, and meeting – and exceeding – your retail compliance requirements.  And it all begins during the onboarding process. 

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Food Distribution Logistics: Finding a 3PL Who Has What It Takes

Mar 15, 2018 / by Bob Lilja posted in Food Supply Chain, 3PL Outsourcing, Food Logistics

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Handing all or part of your food distribution operation over to a third-party logistics (3PL) provider may seem like a leap of faith.  After all, you’re relying on the 3PL’s ability to maintain food quality throughout the distribution cycle and to keep your company compliant with FDA and other requirements.  But with the proper due diligence, you can be confident in a provider’s ability to drive superior performance in all areas, from compliance and safety to operational execution and cost control. 

Here are a few key questions you should ask as part of your qualification process for food distribution partners. 

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