As eTruckBiz wraps up its 12th year, we take a moment to reflect on the journey so far and the exciting path that lies ahead. It's been a time of significant challenges and changes, not just for us but for the entire FedEx Contractor community. Despite the turbulence caused by ongoing changes within FedEx and the broader economic landscape, we've navigated these waters with resilience and innovation.
In our last blog post, we released a legal summary of the most recent lawsuit making the rounds in the transportation business industry. Our goal was to provide contractors with the facts and a summary along with our best industry recommendations. Our advice is always based on past experience and what we believe is best for contractors, but ultimately we want to empower contractors to make their own choices based on their unique business situations.
By any measure, it’s been, and continues to be, a challenging time to be running a transportation business. However, as we often see, there are many opportunities that present themselves during challenging times.
As we look ahead to better times in 2023, it’s important to take a look at where we are currently at and how we got here so that we avoid mistakes of the past.
Our current situation is rooted in the events of 2019. This period introduced the density-stop / ecommerce push from FedEx Ground. As ecommerce deliveries gained traction and increased in number, they fueled the deterioration of contractor per-stop operating margins.
As you know, ecommerce stops are paid at a lower rate and typically include fewer packages per stop vs. commercial stops, resulting in a stealthy revenue per stop decrease across your entire business.
At eTruckBiz, our mission is simple- to help contractors run the easiest and most profitable business possible. Recently we’ve become aware of a potentially growing problem found within several contractors’ operating agreements. In each case, these were recently negotiated contracts done by popular brokers in the FXG space.
Can anything good come from a grim FedEx earnings pre-announcement?
While the announcement and the withdrawal of next fiscal year’s guidance are ominous signs of storminess to come, there may be a silver lining. In recent months, eTruckBiz has seen a 70% increase in renegotiation requests for its clients being granted, signaling that FedEx may be more willing than ever to work with struggling contractors.
As many of you know from attending our many informational sessions over the years, the contractor model affords FedEx Ground the lowest cost provider of last mile transportation services in the industry.
It appears that now may be the time to unleash the power of this competitive advantage.
Well, the time has finally come.
FedEx has officially announced the big move that we had known was coming for a long time.
The announcement that they will be combining most of the operating components of their networks will trigger significant operational changes. The plan does include utilizing mostly contractors, even though some are currently struggling.
Many will recall that we have been signaling for more than 5 years that a change was coming. By far the largest issue will be that the demands of the new network will force contractors who operate Lifestyle Businesses into operating Transportation Companies.
The time has come to put old habits behind and embrace change, or get left behind.
By now, it’s easy to see that everyone’s operating margins are being seriously squeezed.
In an effort to force some sort of helpful response, some made a plea to FXG asking for assistance in various areas to solve a worsening financial situation.
Trust us when we say that FXG is very aware of the plight of CSP & TSP’s.
But now, there is another added challenge that has reared its head. This one, along with inflation not seen for generations, is going to create some unprecedented financial problems that will test even the best operators…
Topics: Business Results, Bookeeping, Training, Intelligence, Business Metrics, Negotiation, Profit, consulting, Money, Cash flow, Inflation, Costs, recession, expenses, renegotiation, Financial, Rates
In this uncertain time, it seems like there was one thing that was certain.
It appeared that stops and volume were marching forward, with no regard for the turbulence and difficulty that we were told surrounds us.
In a roughly 2+ year environment of growth, the rising revenue tide hid many tree stumps, and kept the good ship Contracted Service Provider sailing happily into the sunset.
All was well.
Until it wasn’t.
Recently, the volume has leveled off and in many cases, retreated.
This dip is not too much different from a “normal” summer, but this time, it hurts...bad.
Let’s look at why.