29th Annual Quest for Quality Awards: National LTL’s road to glory getting smoother

While the recession left the national less-than-truck (LTL) carriers reeling, we’re happy to report that this sector is more “in balance” than in past years, with capacity now aligning with demand.

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This improved stability is proving to be good for business, with our financial data showing privately-held carriers hauling more freight at better rates than a year ago, providing those carriers with far better margins than their publicly held counterparts.

And while it’s been a long and winding road for the sector, we’re happy to report that seven carriers in this category will be stepping up to the podium to collect Quest for Quality gold in 2012. We’re also glad to see that overall weighted average scores have ticked up at least a point across the three categories in this sector, signaling that, according to LM readers, these carriers have improved their service performance over last year.

In our National LTL category, FedEx Freight posted the top weighted score of 47.54, 1.71 points higher than the score it posted last year when it also took top spot. FedEx National took quality wins in four of the five attribute categories as well, posting 9.39 in Value, 8.83 in Information Technology, 9.22 in Customer Service, and 8.59 in Equipment & Operations.

Leading the way in On-time Performance this year was Con-way Freight (11.73) on its way to an impressive 46.55 total score. It’s interesting to note that Con-way also improved over last year’s total average, jumping up 2.37 points from its 2011 score.

Readers voted in three winners in this year’s Multiregional LTL category. FedEx Freight posted an impressive 49.42 weighted score, with top marks in On-time Performance (12.15), Information Technology (9.07), Customer Service (9.53), and Equipment & Operations (8.81). Old Dominion Freight Line put up an excellent 47.36, while R+L Carriers rounded out the winning trio with a 44.56. R+L topped the Value attribute race in this category with an 10.07 score.

As in many years past, FedEx Ground and UPS continue to battle it out with nearly identical scores in the Surface Package Carriers category. FedEx Ground edged UPS by a mere .21 points in total weighted scores this year.

2012 Quest for Quality Winners Categories


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About the Author

Michael Levans, Group Editorial Director
Michael Levans is Group Editorial Director of Peerless Media’s Supply Chain Group of publications and websites including Logistics Management, Supply Chain Management Review, Modern Materials Handling, and Material Handling Product News. He’s a 23-year publishing veteran who started out at the Pittsburgh Press as a business reporter and has spent the last 17 years in the business-to-business press. He’s been covering the logistics and supply chain markets for the past seven years. You can reach him at [email protected]

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