When we really think about it, perhaps the only predictable part of 2020 is its unpredictability. Sure, we’ve discussed how the upswing in trucking was easy to spot before it came about, but from here on out, the industry is forging into new proverbial waters.
Here’s what we know.
A Holiday Season Unlike Any Other
Typically, around this time, carriers are already shipping out holiday inventory, and warehouses are beginning to stock up with toys, gifts, decorations, and more. The holiday retail rush overtakes much of the standard supply chain, and cargo rushes to destinations ahead of inclement winter weather.
This year, though, the supply chain is very different. With the future of USPS uncertain, carriers are needing to prepare for other solutions to their shipping problems.
Even odder still is the fact that ocean liners, air freight, and other modes are currently overloaded with backed up cargo that was unable to ship during the pandemic. There is no large rush for holiday supplies, because essential supply chain components are struggling to reach their destinations due to ships that are booked out months in advance.
The Threat of a Second Wave
While some nations seem to have COVID-19 relatively under control, others are struggling to contain the virus. This is nothing new, but the recent waves of outbreaks in France and other thought-to-be-contained countries have brought a very real possibility to the forefront of many people’s minds—the second wave may be on the way.
If a second wave of COVID-19 does sweep across the globe, the effect on the supply chain is, quite frankly, anyone’s guess. Will there be shutdowns like what happened in quarter one of this year? Will carriers continue to attempt to power through while maintaining strict social distancing rules? Will there be a global vaccine that needs priority shipments?
All of these questions are very real possibilities that supply chain managers should be considering. If they’ve left you feeling lost or overwhelmed, reach out to our team. Although the world may be filled with uncertainties, we’re at your side to assist you in any way we can.