A new study by Sleek Technologies has lifted the lid on several trends that are set to shape the freight procurement space in the year ahead. Polling 300 senior logistics decision-makers across the C-Suite, SVP and VP / Director levels at manufacturers, retailers or distribution centers with an annual freight spend of $100M+, the 2022 State of Freight Procurement Research Report delved into the most pressing freight procurement issues, concerns and trends brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic that will remain top-of-mind in 2022.
“COVID-19 has fundamentally changed the way the entire logistics industry operates – particularly when it comes to freight procurement,” said Mike Nervick, CEO and Co-Founder of Sleek Technologies. “From sky-high rejection rates and costs, to navigating the increasingly murky spot market, the pandemic and supply chain crisis have been one of the most disruptive periods in the history of freight procurement. This research helps to illuminate the issues and trends that some of today’s biggest shippers are keeping in mind as we try to work through the pandemic in 2022.”
97% of Shippers Plan to Increase Freight Procurement Budgets in 2022
According to the research, 97% of shippers say they plan to increase their freight procurement budgets in the wake of COVID with hopes of being able to better manage capacity, increase agility, bolster cost management and deliver better overall results. Furthermore, of all respondents, 52% are expected to increase their freight procurement budget by 25% or more year over year.
96% Have Invested in Freight Procurement Upgrades Since the Pandemic Began
The study found that 96% of shippers have invested in new technology or strategies to help boost freight procurement performance as a result of COVID-19, with 95% saying their freight procurement operations have either “significantly improved” or “somewhat improved” since the start of the pandemic.
Brokers Primary Barrier to Freight Procurement Success
When asked what the biggest barrier to freight procurement success was during the COVID-19 pandemic, the majority of the study’s respondents said that brokers were their primary hurdle, with outdated technology and processes coming in second and third.
“The relationship between shippers and brokers has been strained for a long-time,” said Mike Edwards, VP Sales at Sleek Technologies. “They become a necessary evil, especially when contracted carriers pass on loads. Many shippers are now seeking new options to source capacity before it hits the costly spot market. That said, the key is to find compliant, asset-based capacity that matches the shipper’s specific load attributes. Only then, can the shipper move product on time, at fair market price.”