42019 23RDANNUAL THIRD-PARTY LOGISTICS STUDYEXECUTIVE SUMMARYKeeping the Supply ChainAlive and NimbleTo keep up with the increasing levelof complexity within the supply chain,companies must be agile to meet rapidlyevolving conditions. This is particularlyrelevant as retailers and manufacturinglocations work to keep inventories low,respond to faster shipping demands andreact to changes in demand patterns withinthe global economy.In an agile supply chain, shippers are ableto adjust quickly in response to marketconditions. Most shippers understand theneed for agility, but 42% said they haven’tmade changes to increase their inherentagility over the past five years.To help improve service and reduce costs,respondents said they are willing to trynew approaches to the supply chain, withmore than half of shippers—51%—sayingnothing is off of the table and they are willingto evaluate all pieces of the supply chain.Shippers and 3PLs said they are makinginvestments to increase the nimbleness ofthe supply chain. Roughly three-fourths ofshippers and 3PLs said they plan to invest insupply chain visibility/control towers withinthe next two years, and more than half ofshippers and 3PLs are investing in predictiveanalytics.Logistics is being transformed through thepower of data-driven insights, and currenttechnology is enabling unprecedentedamounts of data to be captured from varioussources along the supply chain. The use oftechnology is exploding within every area ofthe supply chain, which is driving increasedagility.The Last YardThe last mile in logistics and supply chainmanagement, which generally refers to thefinal segment of a delivery process, hasbeen relevant for many years. However, ithas taken on enhanced significance with thegrowth in e-commerce and omni-channeldistribution.Taking it one step further, the “last yard”concept refers to what happens to ashipment once it is delivered to a customeror consumer and how it is routed to thespecific location where it may be neededor used. Last-yard logistics can be chaotic.