INCREASED LOAD FACTOR AND SUSTAINABLE LOGISTICS – INTERACTIONS BETWEEN A TRANSPORT BUYER’S AND FREIGHT FORWARDER’S SYSTEM
Conference contribution, 2012
In order to contribute to a sustainable logistics system, there is a need for actions that not only improve one part of the system, but improves the system as a whole. This means e.g. focus on the interaction between logistics and transport systems, as well as analyzing the overall environmental effects. To increase the load factor in vehicles is on the agenda due to both environmental and economic reasons. However, how actions at different actor’s setting interact and influence the load factor is scarcely analyzed in literature. The aim of this article is to investigate how actions in the area of packaging, loading and booking in the transport buyer’s system affect load factor in the freight forwarder’s system.
A case study has been performed, studying the outgoing goods flow from the central warehouse of a large retailer. The basis for the data collection has been interviews and transport data from internal statistics in both the transport buying company and the freight forwarder involved in operating the transports. A survey investigating load factor measures at the vehicles before departure to three of the districts are complementing the statistical data.
Findings and Originality:
Increased load factor are shown in both the transport buyer´s and freight forwarder’s system although the freight forwarder is required to consolidate a larger goods flow in order to see positive effects on the vehicle as a whole. The up-to-date load factor observations show a high potential to increase the load factor by a increased consolidation rate in the freight forwarder’s system as well as to work with offering differentiated lead times to the end customers in the transport buyer´s system. A framework describing how to increase load factor in the freight forwarder’s system is presented consisting of load factor indicators, measures and interacting variables. In order to see the effect on traffic levels, changes in routing in the freight forwarder’s system needs to be further investigated.
The framework is unique in that sense that it describes ways of increasing load factor from a more holistic way, three levels of load factor indicators are related to each other as well as including interactions with the transport buyer’s system.
In order to develop long-term strategies towards sustainable logistics, actors in the logistics system require knowledge about the complexity of the problem and the interdependencies of their actions. The mapping of actions and its effects shown in this paper is contributing to a more holistic view of the concept of load factor having a clearer connection to actors’ environment and its contribution to a sustainable logistics system.