Supply and demand, a well-known term we are all familiar with, is what really shapes our economy. We know the demand comes from the consumers, and the supply is provided for the consumers in several different ways and from many various places. One of the most impactful of these is the global supply chain. What exactly is involved with global supply chains? To sum it up, it’s the distribution of goods through the process of development and production from manufacturers and suppliers and then delivered to retailers, wholesalers, and other networks. It’s how we get our food, clothes, cars, electronics, household appliances, furniture and so much more.
1. 90% of the world's products are distributed by sea. (source)
Maritime transport holds a significant economic value with the costly purchase of ships, the port uses, and logistic and terminal services. They are also able to carry large amounts of commodities through cargo shipping containers. This is then transported to many different cities around the world. Trucks are also a dominant factor in supply chains making up 63% of freight transportation within North America. Trucks are also often affordable, sustainable, and dependable when it comes to shipping goods. Air shipping is still at the lower end only accounting for about 4% of the freight market.
2. E-commerce sales will comprise up to 27% of retail purchases by 2026. (source)
Currently, e-commerce brings in a revenue of $3.3 trillion and will be projected at $5.4 trillion in 2026. This is a significant increase as consumers turn to online shopping rather than heading to a brick and mortar. Also, same-day shipping is becoming the new normal. With more customers demanding shorter time for shipment, businesses also feel pressured to provide faster shipping options to maintain competitive. So this will cause a chain reaction in the global supply chain industry as it’s expected to grow even more.
3. Global supply chains also provide a ton of employment opportunities. (source)
Comprehensively, approximately 43% of the US workforce are employed in supply chain industries, employed either at lead firms or their suppliers. That’s about 44 million workers in the U.S. and they earn above-average wages. Service jobs in the supply chain industry provide many occupations ranging from computer programmers to truck drivers, to operation managers. They make up around 80% of employment within the supply chain industry, with an annual income of $63,000 annually, and growing fast.
4. About 36% of supply chain industry professionals state that one of the top initiatives is optimizing inventory management to maintain supply and demand. (source)
Inventory optimization is the method of balancing the correct amount of inventory needed to keep up with demand, while logistics costs stay low, and avoiding inventory issues like backorders, overstocking, and stockouts.
5. With the growing demand of faster shipping and bulk deliveries, it’s no surprise that 50% of companies are certain that technological advancements have a strong effect on the global supply chain and its services. (source)
With the ability to use cloud-based platforms to track inventory and manage more comprehensive analytical data, technology will allow global supply chains to understand their products and consumers more so that they can improve logistics, increase efficiency and invest in automation. Technology will also enhance innovation through strong science to create better, long-lasting solutions.
6. Roughly around $17 billion will be spent on the expansion and improvements of ports in 2022 which includes $450 million from Department of Transportation grants. (source)
As the population increases, it’s also important that the global supply chain meets the demand of the growing demographics. The Transportation Department announced publicly that $450 million of grants will be aimed at refining the flow of commodities in and out of ports in the U.S. more efficiently. The funding holds the single largest dispersal of grants established by the Port Infrastructure Development Program.