Five US states received a grading of F for logistics industry health, in the annual "Manufacturing & Logistics Report Card for the United States", released by Conexus Indiana.
Hawaii, Maine, New Hampshire, New Mexico and Rhode Island have all received the dubious honour of a failing grade.
Meanwhile, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and Texas all received A grades.
Each state was ranked in several categories including logistics industry health, human capital (quality of the labour force), worker benefit costs, tax climate, expected fiscal liability gap (relating to bond obligations and pension plan funding), global reach, sector diversification, and productivity and innovation.
The report defined logistics industry health as “not merely the capacity to move goods, but to store inventory and manage the distribution and processing of manufactured goods.”
To calculate the health of the logistics industry in each state, Conexus Indiana included “the share total of logistics industry as a share of total state income, and the employment per capita. We also include commodity flows data by both rail and road. To this we measure infrastructure spending as the per capita expenditure on highway construction.”
The report observed that the industry in general was "moving toward a fully digital, connected, and flexible supply chain optimized for e-commerce and last-mile, last-minute delivery”, improving efficiencies “through technologies ranging from big data and predictive analytics to artificial intelligence and robotics.”
Srikant Devaraj, assistant professor at Ball State University’s Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER), which produced the report for Conexus Indiana, told Supply Chain Dive that improvements in the other categories, including infrastructure and human capital, would help to bolster logistics to meet these technological challenges.
“Those technologies are there, but you still need people who can work with them,” he said. “Education is a key component, no matter which industry.”
(Source: Supply Chain Dive)