Armstrong Brings Transportation Back In-House

After outsourcing its transportation functions to a 3PL in January 2007, the 150-year-old manufacturer brought it back under its own roof to tighten controls, establish carrier measurement, and rack up the savings. And that bold move earned Armstrong the 2010 NASSTRAC Shipper of the Year Award.

By ·

Sometimes it’s best to control your own destiny. Just ask the transportation team at Armstrong World Industries, a 150-year-old flooring, ceiling, and cabinet manufacturer based in Lancaster, Pa.

After outsourcing its transportation functions to a major third-party logistics provider (3PL) in January 2007, the logistics department of the $2.8 billion company quickly realized—in less than a year—that the new partnership was not going to pan out. In short: The arrangement was not meeting Armstrong’s established cost and service goals.

“The biggest flaw was that our 3PL took a one-size-fitsall approach,” says Marcus Smith, Armstrong’s manager of transportation procurement. “We have specialized needs, especially in truck equipment. We use flatbeds, dry vans, driver-assisted vehicles, and short, straight trucks in and out of New York City. They didn’t appreciate the complexity of our business.”


About the Author

John D. Schulz
John D. Schulz has been a transportation journalist for more than 20 years, specializing in the trucking industry. John is on a first-name basis with scores of top-level trucking executives who are able to give shippers their latest insights on the industry on a regular basis.

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

3PL · Logistics · Transportation · All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Improving Packaging: The Cost of Shipping Air is Going Up
Retailers and manufacturers that insist on using inefficient and sloppy packaging methods—oversized boxes, inefficient packaging, poorly constructed palletized contents—are paying for their mistakes in sharply higher freight rates. Pitt Ohio White Paper, Logistics White Paper, Dimensional Packaging
Download Today!
From the July 2016 Issue
While it’s currently a shippers market, the authors of this year’s report contend that we’ve entered a “period of transition” that will usher in a realignment of capacity, lower inventories, economic growth and “moderately higher” rates. It’s time to tighten the ties that bind.
2016 State of Logistics: Third-party logistics
2016 State of Logistics: Ocean freight
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Getting the most out of your 3PL relationship
Join Evan Armstrong, president of Armstrong & Associates, as he explains how creating a balanced portfolio of "Top 50" global and domestic partners can maximize efficiency and mitigate risk.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
Regional ports concentrate on growth and connectivity
With the Panama Canal expansion complete, ocean cargo gateways in the Caribbean are investing to...
Digital Reality Check
Just how close are we to the ideal digital supply network? Not as close as we might like to think....

Top 25 ports: West Coast continues to dominate
The Panama Canal expansion is set for late June and may soon be attracting more inbound vessel calls...
Port of Oakland launches smart phone apps for harbor truckers
Innovation uses Bluetooth, GPS to measure how long drivers wait for cargo