TPM ‘24: GSC’s Key Takeaways

GSC ∕ April

TPM '24 Sessions

In the dynamic world of global supply chain management, keeping ahead of industry trends and innovation is a key component for success. The GSC team participated in another successful TPM ’24 gathering industry-wide insights at the leading maritime conference. We spent the week exploring the current challenges in our global supply chain and engaging with experts within our field by attending thought-provoking sessions and participating in discussions with other industry professionals about their challenges and successes.  

Here are key takeaways we learned:

Navigating Post-Pandemic Market Dynamics
As the supply chain is still heavily feeling the whipsaw effect of the pandemic and shifting supply and demand, it’s no surprise the impact from the pandemic was front and center at the show. The discussions at TPM ‘24 and within the conference sessions highlighted the ongoing volatility in the global supply chain. The concept, doubling as the conference theme, “Extreme Normalization Fallout,” encapsulates the markets rapid change and the need for businesses to remain agile. This session highlighted the need for diversification and redundancy throughout companies’ supply chain strategies. Beyond diversification, companies must showcase how they can provide stable solutions to these fluctuations ensuring both peaks and valleys are accommodated. This requires a more nuanced approach to risk management but provides an opportunity to foresee and mitigate potential disruptions. 

Technology Integration and Sustainability
The focus on TPMTech throughout TPM ‘24 highlights the continued shift toward greater technological integration and environmental responsibility within the shipping and logistics sector. The introduction of new technologies is revolutionizing the way goods are transported and tracked, offering unprecedented levels of efficiency. However, getting to the level of technology proficiency and prowess that’s now required is no small feat. This often requires an IT budget much larger than companies had planned for in years prior and looking at internal investments to yield a more efficient ROI. This technological shift aligns with broader market trends and expectations, and we’ll only see an increase in the importance of data, data quality, and technology integrations in the future.  

Supply Chain Strategy
In a session covering Supply Chain Strategy, former U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates, highlighted the increasing geopolitical tensions and the impact on global supply chain. His remarks emphasized how companies need to protect their supply chain strategies via diversification in response to increasing geopolitical risks and supply chain disruptions. Recent years have provided numerous reminders of this necessity, ranging from labor negotiations affecting dockworkers along the West Coast, to environmental impacts concerning the Panama Canal, the political tensions and resulting Red Sea disruptions, and more. A key lesson from these experiences is the advantage of proactively planning for supply chain disruptions rather than reacting to disruptions after they occur. This proactive approach can be implemented in many ways, with diversification of import and export strategies mitigating potential disruptions.  

TPM ‘24 was a successful conference for supply chain leaders to discuss the pressing issues the global supply chains face, while sharing key lessons learned from their respective operations. The takeaways from the conference reflect the current state of the logistics and shipping industry, while charting a course for navigating the complexities of a rapidly evolving global trade environment. We’re already looking forward to TPM 2025! See you in Long Beach next year.  

At GSC, we’re excited to remain on the frontlines of the ever-changing supply chain and to see what the future has in store. Curious how GSC leverages advanced technology in operations? Check out our services and solutions here.    

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