- A new report issued by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker describes the best operational methods followed by successful U.S. ports and supply chains in managing such challenges as larger vessels, higher trade volumes, and overall industry issues, the National Customs Brokers & Forwarders Association of America reported in December.
- Suggestions for improvements include: discussion groups enabling stakeholder input; utilizing technologies to improve operational efficiency and cargo data information; better means of improved chassis availability, and teaming with nearby schools to enhance port worker skills, rates of worker retention, and attracting new talent.
- For every $1 billion in exports that travels through U.S. seaports, roughly 15,000 U.S. jobs are created, The American Association of Port Authorities says.
Best practices in ports will be driven by the ability to apply specific technologies that enhance information sharing across the various stakeholders involved in the chain. Last year, the Advisory Committee on Supply Chain Competitiveness recommended a fundamental list of data points that will be critical for the industry moving forward. With this, the need for cross-platform standardization will be necessary for port-to-port efficiencies.
Increased stakeholder collaboration, in which established working groups engage in open discussion regarding supply chains, cargo management, system performance, and operational and infrastructure efficiency, will be key to building this standardization.
Benchmarks and measurements also support port enhancement. Tracking such daily practices as truck turn times, truck speed, rail loading, and gate moves per day are just a few of the targeted activities the metrics of which can be analyzed to improve. Information sharing also makes a real difference in increasing a port's ability to coordinate its stakeholders, such as when cargo status was shared in advance of the arrival of the 18,000 container-full Benjamin Franklin in December 2015.