With access to tens of thousands of motor carriers, Ryder System isn’t having difficulty finding truck capacity for shippers. But the rising cost of those trucks is pushing Ryder Supply Chain Solutions to take its customers’ freight off-road.
“One of our strategies is to convert truck traffic, especially intra-company truck traffic, to intermodal,” said Tim Podvin, general manager of global transportation procurement. “We’re always looking for an opportunity to do that.”
Ryder spends about $1 billion a year on truckload transportation of various types, Podvin said. Increasingly, Ryder is looking to shift more of that freight to rail, “where there’s a monetary saving without too much loss to transit time,” he said.
Typically, the shift adds one to two days to a delivery. “If we can live with that extra time, and save our customer some money,” Podvin said, “that’s obviously our end goal.”
The railroads have been bidding for more business from third-party logistics companies and a move to rail by Ryder’s large outsourced supply chain operation would bring significant volume off the road.