Supply Chains are Saving Money with Sustainability Initiatives


Companies are always looking to improve their bottom lines, but sustainability initiatives have up until this point remained in the “nice to have” category for many companies. The pre-conception that sustainability programs cost too much money is a notion that is being challenged, however. A new study by HSBC of more than 8,500 companies in 34 market sectors shows a trend that businesses who implement sustainability changes in their supply chains are improving their bottom lines.

Supply chains are where the majority of a company’s environmental impact occurs. Transportation of goods eats up a lot of fuel and shipping materials like shrink wrap and pallets often get thrown away. In fact, about 80% of a company’s environmental impact can be attributed to the supply chain. This makes it an obvious place to begin trimming waste.

Fuel Usage

Reducing waste and improving the bottom line go hand in hand, however. A company that wants to cut their fuel usage can consolidate multiple LTL orders into a full truckload or find the optimal route between stops with the help of technology. If truck idling time is a concern, businesses can focus on ways to improve the flow of traffic in their yards and docks. These changes are not only green, but save the company money by improving efficiency and reducing freight spend.

A Digital Paper Trail Instead of a Physical One

Gaining shipping transparency with the help of technology is another method companies can use to reduce their environmental impact. Instead of wasting time, paper, and money chasing down the status of loads and calling and booking appointments, companies can leverage transportation management technology to go paperless and speed up processes or rating, booking and tracking. Digitization trends like automation and machine learning are helping to speed this process up even further. With technology, companies can retain an organized paper trail of their order statuses instead of a disorganized literal one in their offices.

Finding Waste

Tracking and tracing technology can pinpoint areas of waste in a supply chain. A company can analyze where there are delays in their supply chain, measure their carriers’ KPIs, and make strategic optimization changes. Being able to see an order down to the SKU level from the time it leaves the dock to when it’s delivered to the customer gives companies a heightened level of understanding of their freight spend. It also means that nodes which are performing poorly can be addressed. Once issues are found and eliminated, environmental savings follow almost organically.

The Bottom Line

Consumers are becoming more and more environmentally conscious. It’s important for companies to understand what their consumers value and integrate those same principles into their day-to-day operations. Not only will sustainability initiatives help the environment, they will also streamline supply chains and contribute positively to the bottom line. More profits mean more opportunities to streamline processes, and so on. Instead of being wary of investing in sustainability initiatives, companies should consider the positive ROI they will gain and jump on the green supply chain bandwagon!

Transportation management technology like Kuebix TMS can help companies with their green initiatives. In fact, Kuebix recently won Supply & Demand Chain Executive’s Green Award for the second consecutive year. The award recognizes providers of supply chain solutions and services that assist customers in achieving measurable sustainability goals. If you’re interested in improving the efficiency of your transportation operations from both a sustainability and monetary viewpoint, check out Kuebix to find out how intelligent supply chain technology can begin you on your journey!

Enjoyed what you read? The next time Dan posts, you’ll get it first:


  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.