Kenco’s 3PL study points to need for innovation.

The State of the 3PL Innovation Survey found that nearly 85% of respondents defined innovation as “process improvements” or “business model innovation.”

By ·

While new and improved supply chain innovations are always making headlines, a recent survey conducted by Kenco reveals that awareness and interest are not the same as adoption.

Kenco, a leading provider of integrated logistics solutions, real estate services, and material handling equipment, recently surveyed supply chain leaders from a range of industries to get a deeper understanding of how they define innovation, which technologies will have the greatest impact, and plans for the future of innovation.

Which phrase most applies to how you define innovation in your organization?

The State of the 3PL Innovation Survey found that nearly 85% of respondents defined innovation as “process improvements” or “business model innovation.” This proves that although the media emphasizes trendy technologies of tomorrow (ex: drones, AR/VR, etc.), supply chain leaders are actually investing in the new technologies and solutions that can have incremental but impactful changes today in their supply chain’s and bottom line.

Kristi Montgomery, VP of Innovation at Kenco told LM in an interview that “innovation” is now needed more than ever to cope with “the Amazon effect.”

“Many supply chain managers did not expect the dramatic shift in customer demand,” she says. “As a consequence, we felt that we needed to address the trend with a new strategic arm of the company.

Montgomery was formerly Kenco’s VP of information technology, so she knows something about crisis management. Her new job is to anticipate change and prepare her customers for a range of solutions.

“We expect ‘innovation’ to become part of the academic supply chain curriculum at many schools in the future,” she says. “It’s the logical extension of Six Sigma, and will be needed more than ever.”

Other statistics from this survey showed that:

  • 83% of supply chain leaders plan to invest in supply chain visibility, while drones and augmented reality both ranked the lowest in investment plans at 8% 
  • 64% of supply chain leaders deemed supply chain visibility as the highest priority, while 40% and 42%, respectively, indicated drones and driverless vehicles were equally not a priority.
  • 94% of survey respondents feel that it’s important for their 3PL provider to have a competency in technology and innovation. In addition, more than 50% expect their 3PL provider to also be investing in innovative technologies.

Read the full report here


About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [email protected]

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

Global Logistics · Kenco · Logistics · All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
eBook: Why Multi-Tier Supplier Collaboration is More Important Now
Explore the benefits of supplier collaboration including sharing demand forecasts, faster reactions to demand or capacity changes and well-coordinated product launches.
Download Today!
From the September 2017 Logistics Management Magazine Issue
While Amazon’s recent bid to purchase Whole Foods made mainstream headlines, the e-commerce giant will still need to adhere to time-tested realities. Any way you slice it, the integrated U.S. cold chain requires optimized service from existing ports, 3PLs, cold storage warehousing, transportation providers and high-value vendors.
Improving 3PL Management: Glanbia Adds Muscle to Logistics
Why Retail Supply Chain Transformations Fail - and how to get it right
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
EDITORS' PICKS
26th Annual Study of Logistics and Transportation Trends: Transportation at Digital Speed
While a majority of companies strongly agree that transportation is a strategically important...
34th Annual Quest for Quality Awards: Winners Revealed
Which carriers, third-party logistics providers, and North American ports have crossed the service...

2017 Salary Survey: Fresh Voices Express Optimism
Our “33rd Annual Salary Survey” reflects more diversity entering the logistics management...
LM Exclusive: Major Modes Join E-commerce Mix
While last mile carriers receive much of the attention, the traditional modal heavyweights are in...