Issue 2, June 2022
The Supply Chain’s Great Transformation
As I reflect on the unprecedented events of recent history and look ahead to the future of global logistics, one word comes to mind: transformation.
The context for this concept changed dramatically in the last two years, but business leaders who’ve learned to navigate shifting consumer behavior, booming e-commerce and digital transformation know that the pandemic, as extreme an event as it has been, merely accelerated a decades-long metamorphosis. Those who hoped for a return to normalcy in 2022 have likely by now awakened to the reality that supply chain struggles will continue; the future is less foreseeable; and business is anything but usual.
Disruption is now endemic.
What was once an invisible, intricate web of moving parts working quietly and efficiently in the background to deliver goods to your door, is now headline news and watercooler fodder.
Its vulnerabilities laid bare.
Fortunately we have not simply battened down the hatches to weather the supply chain’s great transformation. We have tackled it head-on, and from unimaginable chaos has come incredible innovation. In this issue of GROUNDBREAKERS, we tap into the expertise of game-changing, risk-taking visionaries across sectors and find out how they are transforming their businesses and industries. We also highlight cutting-edge tools, such as advances in AI, machine learning and green technology that are helping future-proof supply chains.
Customers are also increasingly seeking support from logistics partners to reach aggressive new sustainability goals.
It has been a chapter of immense transformation for our customers and partners, who require faster and deeper multitier visibility to navigate a rapidly evolving environment. In this issue, Annette Clayton, energy groundbreaker and CEO of Schneider Electric North America, unpacks the latest 3D modeling technology providing this crucial end-to-end purview.
Policymakers are also looking to increase collaboration and visibility to ease supply chain strains. In the U.S. Prologis has joined 18 organizations, including FedEx, Target and Albertsons, who are working with the federal government to create and launch the Freight Logistics Optimization Works (FLOW). As U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg explains, the data-sharing initiative will develop an information network providing first-of-its-kind visibility into the flow of goods.
Customers are also increasingly seeking support from logistics partners to reach aggressive new sustainability goals—marking another transformational shift toward a greener, more resilient supply chain. Look out for our interview with logistics groundbreaker and Rhenus executive board member Karsten Obert, who lays out the company’s impressive eco-roadmap and issues a climate change call to action. As real estate groundbreaker and JLL Markets CEO Greg O’Brien points out, these efforts are good for business, too—to the tune of $300 million in energy cost savings for their clients.
Data and analytics continue to be unsung heroes in the race toward resiliency. Since 2007, Prologis’ research group has provided valuable metrics that illuminate key trends affecting our markets. Never has this information been more critical than during the past two years of uncertainty. In June, we’re highlighting top takeaways from our longstanding, industry-leading Industrial Business Indicator (IBI) with the inaugural Supply Chain Indicator. It’s a new report with even bigger picture insights, but the goal remains the same: to arm our customers—and the world—with the most up-to-date information impacting the global movement of goods. We’re particularly excited about our new proprietary metric, Prologis True Months of Supply, which captures the full scope of supply and demand by comparing vacant spaces to trailing net absorption.
There has never been a greater time for leadership transformation. As Maria Flynn, workforce Groundbreaker and CEO of Jobs for the Future, so eloquently shares in this issue, authentic and transparent two-way discussion has never been more vital nor felt more vulnerable as we navigate unprecedented pandemic challenges together.
Looking forward, I’m more confident than ever that our industry is rapidly evolving and rising to meet new challenges. And, as I hope you’ll take away from this issue, there are innovators and game changers who are well equipped to face what lies ahead.