Reports of collaboration's potential for driving logistics success have been greatly exaggerated, according to Robert Delaney, senior vice president of St. Louisbased Cass Information Systems. "It seems to me that collaboration is being over-taught, over-sold and over-published," Delaney said during his 14th annual "State of Logistics" presentation at the National Press Club last month.
Delaney maintains that companies have plenty of internal housekeeping matters to attend to before they start involving their vendors and customers in efforts to boost efficiency.
As part of the presentation, Delaney's associate, Rosalyn Wilson, also confirmed that a three-year freight recession continued last year, as motor freight billing in the United States fell by $ 10 billion over the previous year's number. Now at $462 billion annually, motor freight billing represents 4.4 of the nation's gross domestic product.
As for the overall picture, Delaney reported that the logistics industry accounted for some $910 billion in annual expenditures in 2002, or 8.7 percent of GDP. That represents a record low, according to Delaney, who has been tracking these numbers since 1980.