Signs of Cooling???

Are signs of a cooling freight market already apparent?

Over the past 15 months headlines have revolved around the growth of the economy and how it has impacted our supply chains. Consumer spending has been the greatest factor as generous government assistance has left Americans with extra cash. Even as airline travel, lodging, and entertainment have opened back up, retail sales remain strong. This is especially true as we approach the holiday season. The big question on most logistics professionals’ minds, however, is how long will this 15+ month peak season last? A handful of indexes such as Personal Consumption Expenditures, Savings Rates, the CPI, and TEU bookings may already be trending in a cooling direction.

For example, while Service Expenditures have remained above Durable and Nondurable Goods combined throughout the entire pandemic, since Q2 this year PCE Services have really started to pick up steam as COVID fears eased and vaccination counts began to increase. At the same time, Durable Goods seem to have peaked and are in a downward trend. Durable Goods represent items purchased by consumers that last more than 3 years such as electronics, appliances, and furniture. As we’ve discussed in past episodes, the influx in demand of these goods during the pandemic has kept an enormous amount of pressure on our supply chains.

Spending on consumer goods has remained elevated even as consumers began spending money on entertainment, lodging, and travel as the US Personal Savings Rate spent an entire year at or near record levels. However, as of September, the rate has returned to pre-pandemic levels. This is another indicator that without continued Government assistance going out to US households regularly, pandemic-like spending cannot sustain.


Another factor that may impact consumer spending in the near future is inflation. The Consumer Price Index (a measure of the average change over time in prices paid by consumers) raised 6.2 percent from Oct 2020 to Oct 2021. That’s the largest 12-month increase since the period ending in November of 1990. While some may argue that the consumer can afford to spend a little more right now, a more relevant argument may be “but for how long at our current pace?”


As far as the effect on freight volumes domestically, SONARs Inbound Ocean TEU Volume Index shows us the pace at which inbound TEU bookings have grown over the past three years on average. The YoY jump from 19’ to 20’ and 20’ to 21’ has been remarkable to say the least, and as import volumes remain strong so does the overall demand on all transportation modes.

A different view of the same chart shows bookings trending in a downward progression since their April peak of this year. And while remaining significantly above pre-pandemic levels, the overall bookings trend and some of the other consumer data we discussed, may be a couple of trends to keep an eye on as 2021 ends and next year’s forecasts become relevant.


Cincinnati’s Best Place To Work Finalist

For the ninth time since 2011, Bridge Logistics has been named a finalist for Best Places to Work in Cincinnati!

This year the Cincinnati Business courier recognized 66 finalists to be Cincinnati’s best places to work. These finalists were picked based on an anonymous survey conducted by a third party, Quantum Workplace, to gauge how employees feel about their workplaces. Questions range from “Do you think your company will succeed in the future” to “is your company welcoming of everyone.” The final companies are then scored in the categories such as senior leadership, team effectiveness, work recognition, and benefits along with other companies of similar sizes.

Bridge Logistics has won the Best Places to Work Award three times.

We truly believe in the work we do here at Bridge and the people who help make that possible. Our goal has always been to create an environment that allows people to achieve their goals, believe in themselves, and invest in one another along the way. This recognition is truly a testament to the culture we have worked so hard to create. Our motto has always been, “people first, success delivered,” You see this in the way we treat our customers and carriers with respect and the way we treat our co-workers with servantry.


Read the full article here: Best Places to Work – Cincinnati Business Courier (subscription required)


Flatbeds, Refers, Vans…Oh My!

A few months ago, we talked about three factors that may cause flatbed rates to increase throughout 2021, let’s look at how rates have progressed since then and why.

Since February, national flatbed rejection rates have increased 44% while van and refer rates are still incredibly elevated at 21% and 38%. Their swings seem relatively insignificant when compared to the massive surge in flatbed rejections over the past 8 months.

Previously, typically when rejections increase so do spot rates, and eventually contracted rates follow suit. As you can see here, a tremendous seasonal push in flatbed demand as the weather broke in March sparked a huge spike in rejections until they peaked north of 30% in June.

At the same time, rejections were peaking, June was the last month we saw spot rates rise above contracted rates in a five-month margin narrowing battle.

The magnitude of stickiness surrounding the offset in supply and demand becomes even more apparent when you look at both rejections and spot vs contracted rates at the same time. Also, the increase in compliance after June’s peak can be seen in the approval of higher contracted rates being submitted by carriers.

That is what has transpired since we made our predictions in February but let’s talk about why.

Starting with Total Residential Construction Spending, the most recent release, according to the US Census Bureau, came in at 795 million for August. That’s up 14% from the pre-pandemic high set back in 2006 before the housing bubble burst and 7% or 57 million from the last time we visited this data back in February.

As for Single-Family Housing Starts and Building Permits, both have experienced drop-offs since February however, not due to demand as both data sets are reporting numbers above pre-pandemic levels and have both labor and building material shortages to combat.

Have questions? Feel free to reach out via LinkedIn or visit

Operations Appreciation Day 2017!

We are excited to take a pause today to celebrate our Operations, Administrative, Talent Acquisition and Compliance team members! Bridge is a selling organization and because of this sales often becomes high profile and commands attention as it represents the pathway to growth. However, It is important to recognize the fact that none of it is possible without the hard work and dedication of all of our team members in their respective roles! For Ops Appreciation Day, we’ve collectively decided to go all out with a taco bar from Gomez in OTR!

Logistics can be a tough business and our teams makes it looks easy. We appreciate every member of the Bridge team !!



Jim Campbell



Work Ethic: A Gen X Perspective


It’s easy to push blame on parenting or categorize a whole generation under a negative connotation of entitlement.  But when it comes to doing our jobs, do our parents work for us?  Is an entire generation doing everyone else’s job?   The obvious answer is no. It leaves only one person responsible…you.

When I was young, my dad engrained in me strong work ethic.  You have to work hard for just reward.  He used to say, “If you’re not going to do the job right the first time, don’t bother doing it at all.”  That phrase used to tick me off, and I would begrudgingly finish trimming the bushes, stain a fence, mow the lawn and made sure it got done.  He would then come out and inspect my work.  If it wasn’t on his level, I would hear that phrase which became nails on a chalkboard to me.  What I didn’t realize at the time was his lesson:  work ethic.  It’s not just about doing the job but doing it with a purpose.  To have the ability to take a step back and be proud of the work you’ve accomplished.

Let’s fast forward about 25 years. I recently “finished” putting together a fire pit in my backyard.  I found myself asking that same question:  “Is it done?”  “Am I proud of the work I did?”  I wasn’t, and I have now decided to go back and redo the fire pit. I want to be able to take that step back and honestly answer that question confidently.

In our professional lives, we run the risk of going through the motions without review of our own work.  Let’s ask ourselves the tough questions… “Did I give it my all?”  “Am I proud of the work I’ve done today?”  If your answer is, “no,” then what are you going to do to fix it?  I’d rather be critical of myself before someone I respect has to acknowledge it.  If it gets to that point then I haven’t been honest with myself and have been just going through the paces.

It’s interesting from a Generation X perspective in a millennial-driven climate. For example, I believe work ethic is getting to work on time (meaning 10-15 minutes before the clock strikes) and start looking at the data from the day before so I can provide sound coaching advice for the day ahead. A millennial could be in the exact same role, the exact same company, and come into work 30 minutes late every day.  This makes my blood boil. My first assumption? I think they are lazy and the company is losing easily two and a half hours a week of lost productivity.

A Millennial’s definition of work ethic may be different, but not necessarily wrong.  It’s perspective.  That millennial in the exact same role at the exact same company already reviewed the data the night before on their iPhone. Or maybe that millennial swung by a Starbucks at 7:00am that morning and spent some time looking through the data.  Technically, that means they knew the information before me, yet, I had the opinion they were “lazy” because of my different thought process of work ethic.

Technically, the job gets done.  But here’s the challenge.  These different perspectives must learn to work collaboratively toward that common goal, yet be proud of their own work.

Attire for Hire: How appearance can make or break your interview

1234From the desk of Logan Sand, Talent Acquisition.


30 seconds.

And, that’s about it.

According to Forbes, first impressions are usually formed within the first 30 seconds of meeting an interview candidate. Whether it’s reflective of your ambition, your mindset, your decision making, well, that’s a conversation for another blog. However, being able to physically exude that internal confidence is directly tied to your appearance.

Step back to the 1950’s. Think about Mad Men, for example. Everyone is in a suit, a suit skirt, blouse, and shirt and tie, always dressed to the nines. It was a commonality to dress in a formal suit during the work week. Fast forward to 2016: roughly 9 percent of the workforce continues to maintain the formal dress code. If you know anything about Bridge Logistics, we continue to expand the corporate norm; it’s not uncommon to see our staff in everything from T-shirts and shorts, gym shoes and jeans.  We believe in having a relaxed dress code, and hey – as long as I’m not meeting with clients or candidates – I’m all about wearing a ¼ zip pullover, jeans and Sanuks (it’s kind of my thing).

But I didn’t land at Bridge walking into the office in jeans.

Your professional appearance is a big piece of the interview. You can have a great resume, you can have credentials, awards, and endorsements on LinkedIn, but at the end of the day if you walk in looking like you’ve pulled your clothes out of the hamper, you can be dismissed from the process quickly.


So, you’ve got an interview. What to wear? Here’s my advice.

1. It’s okay to ask. If you’re confused about a company policy and their attire, it’s alright to reach out to the recruiter or hiring manager and simply ask, “What’s the recommended dress code for the interview?”, and they’ll tell you. When I have a candidate ask, I’ll tell them. NOTE: emphasize the dress code for the INTERVIEW, not the company policy. These can potentially be very different.

 2. You can always dress it down, but you can’t dress it up. If you walk into an interview with Jeans, and everyone else has on chinos, slacks, and skirts, you will instantly feel out of place. If you wear a suit, a suit-skirt, it’s easy to adjust formal wear to a business casual environment. Take off the jacket. Remove the tie. Roll up the sleeves.

 3. Dressing nice doesn’t mean expensive. This topic is brought up  when I speak on Q & A panels with college students. The assumption seems to be, “If I buy a suit, I’m going to be strapped for cash”. Remember that a good suit and/or nice professional clothes are an investment in your career. There are great websites our there with reasonably-priced suiting, like Combatant Gentleman, with suits under $200. If the investment is too much right now, ask for clothing for Christmas, Birthdays, Graduation, etc.  At the very least, you might even have a friend that’s close to your size and style who you could borrow the suit, and dry clean it for them. Think creatively when on the hunt for professional attire.

Colors, patterns, textures and fit. This is a big one. A sloppy over-sized suit will instantly make you look messy. If you have a mustard-yellow plaid suit that looks like it came from 1977, you’ll look dated. If you’re wearing a heavy wool suit and interviewing in July, you’ll probably sweat through the suit, and it’s seasonably the wrong choice. You get the idea. When investing for that right professional attire, it’s best to go with a “4-season” material, and timeless colors, such as navy or charcoal.  Fit is always crucial; not too loose, but not too tight. Ladies and Gentleman alike – if your shirt or blouse is 2 sizes too small, you might be giving off the wrong impression.

 5. Appearance also means hygiene. I cannot stress about hygiene enough. You can have a perfect attire, but if you have messy hair, facial hair, ear wax, dry skin, bad breath, body odor… it does not go unnoticed. As ridiculous as this may sound, you would be surprised how many do not focus on hygiene, or can sweat off the deodorant before they shake the first hand. Before you walk into the interview, it never hurts to do an overall check to make sure you look and feel like a million bucks.


As the recruiting season is upon us, and job growth is strong in 2016, I hope these tips help you on your first impression and attire for hire! Best of luck, and dress well!




Logan Sand oversees Talent Acquisition efforts at Bridge Logistics in Cincinnati, OH. If you’re in search to launch your career, have a company build into your success, and work in a vibrant corporate culture, Bridge Logistics may be the right fit for you. See our openings.

Bridge Logistics is continuing to grow, adding 30+ positions in Ohio, doubling in size. Read more about our strategic job growth! >>

One Way Farm – Thank You Notes!

Here at Bridge Logistics, we’re like one big happy family, and in return, we like to come together and give back to our community in a special way. We collaborate with the One Way Farm, in Fairfield, OH. If you haven’t heard about this organization, you need to get in the loop!

The One Way Farm Children’s Home is a non-profit  caring for the abused, abandoned, neglected, troubled youth, and children with disabilities and developmental disabilities in the State of Ohio.


What’s great about the One Way Farm Children’s Home, is that they  provide a secure, warm and loving environment for residents who are abused, abandoned, troubled or neglected, while also meeting their medical, educational, therapeutic, and housing needs. They have children ranging from 6 to 18 years, and to age 21 for the developmentally disabled (via.

We decided to sponsor their children during the holiday season, hoping to give them the Christmas that they deserve. In return, we were given these Thank You notes below! How awesome. A big shout out to our staff went all out on the lists this year!



We were blown away by the Thank You notes! Thank YOU One Way Farm! We’re just happy to be a part of something bigger than Bridge Logistics.


For more information on the One Way Farm Children’s Home, and how to get involved, click here. 


Bridge Logistics Featured in Cincinnati Business Courier







Hi, Logan Sand here!

For Bridge Logistics, 2015 has been an amazing year, and 2016 is looking to be bigger, bolder, and better than ever before.  We as leadership are continuing to drive our culture, strategic growth, and continual development of our employees. It’s why I do what I do every single day.

Below is the The Cincinnati Business Courier Press Release on our approval of a 1.325% five-year job creation tax credit from the Ohio Tax Credit Authority. This is just a small glimpse into what the future holds for Bridge Logistics. It is an exciting time to say the least! 

Interested in joining the family? Check out our opportunities here

Want to connect? Reach out to Logan Sand at



via. Cincinnati Business Courier

Growing Greater Cincinnati logistics company to expand, hire dozens of employees

By Tom Demeropolis


A growing logistics company plans to expand its West Chester Township operations and hire dozens of new employees.

Bridge Logistics Inc., a third-party logistics provider, plans to expand its operations at 5 Circle Freeway Drive. The expansion is expected to create 30 new jobs and retain 22 jobs, according to a scope of work document from the Ohio Development Services Agency.

Jim Campbell, co-owner of Bridge Logistics, said the firm continues to grow because of its culture.
“We have a culture that whole-heartedly believes in the development of individuals,” Campbell told me.

Bridge Logistics, which has a total employment of 36 including co-ops, expects revenue to hit about $16 million this year. Next year, Campbell anticipates revenue to approach $20 million.
The company moved into more than 8,300 square feet of space in February. The new office has room for up to 60 employees, but Campbell is already looking at his options for more space. He expects Bridge Logistics will need more room by the end of 2016.
Bridge Logistics received approval for a nearly 1.325 percent, five-year job creation tax credit from the Ohio Tax Credit Authority on Tuesday with an estimated value of $126,000. The TCA’s incentive is based on new payroll now instead of state income tax withheld. As part of the tax credit agreement, the authority requires Bridge Logistics to maintain operations at this project location for at least eight years.
According to the scope of work, Bridge Logistics has the opportunity to grow outside Ohio. State incentives would help keep the company’s expansion here.
The company’s fixed asset investment would be toward leasehold improvements.

Bridge Logistics expects the 30 new jobs to generate $2.4 million in annual payroll, or about $80,000 average annual salary, by the end of 2018.
West Chester Township expressed its support for the proposed project. Bridge Logistics’ customers range from “mom and pop” manufacturers to Fortune 500 companies, Campbell said. Bridge Logistics was a Business Courier Fast 55 award winner in 2006 and 2007 and was named to the Inc. 5000 list in 2012. In addition to its office in West Chester, the firm also has an office in Mansfield, which it is also expanding.

OPINION: Support and Absorb, From One Intern to Another

Joe (“Joe Jr.”) Marot – Fall Co-Op, University of Cincinnati



They say an internship is all about gaining experience… or that it’s just another bullet point to add to your resume to make yourself more marketable when graduation rolls around? To a degree, this is correct. But, what if you wanted more than that out of your internship? How could you turn that internship into a full-time job offer? Through my experience, the answer to that question comes down to a couple simple tasks.

Typically, an intern will work directly under someone who has experience with the company. Yes, they may help out others, but they primarily help out whoever or whatever department they are assigned to. I have found that the best way to get noticed as an intern is to simply make your boss’ job easier.

That’s it.

Management will be able to tell whether you’re helping or hurting the employee or team you are assigned to. Make your boss’ job easier to get noticed. Do not try to overstretch yourself by getting involved in multiple facets of the company. You are new to the company, and there is usually a lot to learn. Learn your role, and learn how to be successful in it. You have to learn how to walk before you can run. An intern is there to support, and that is what you should focus on first.

While an intern is there to support, they are also there to learn. Everyone knows an internship is a learning experience. But to me, this learning can extend further than simply learning the tasks and job responsibilities associated with your position.

The best way to learn and be successful?Absorbing in the atmosphere. Once you feel comfortable within your support role, start to pay attention to the things happening around you. Listen to the way people are talking to customers. Watch how management handles its employees to effectively learn their expectations. Absolutely will you learn from your mistakes, but learn from the mistakes of others as well. Learn what to do and what not to do from those who have more experience in the business. This list can go on and on, but all it boils down to is taking in everything that is going on around you. Take your learning one step further, and you will put yourself in a position to make the most out of your internship.

If you noticed, the tasks I laid out seem intertwined. Once you are comfortable within your role, start to expand your vision and hearing. Take in other aspects of the company. Being successful at your job responsibilities as an intern will put you in a position to be noticed. Learning the expectations and behaviors of others will put you in a position to be hired.

Support and absorb, and that internship will turn into more than just another bullet point on your resume.


Joe Marot is a rock star Co-Op student headed for full-time employment with Bridge Logistics after his graduation. For more about our internship program, click here.

Prosperity in Sales: How to Give Yourself a Raise


By: Ryan Ziemba, Sales Coach

Early in my career, I was sitting in my office looking at my sales goals for the following year and felt deflated.  How am I going to muster the energy- and frankly the sales- to achieve these numbers?  That’s when, for the first time in my life, my professional and personal goals collided.  And it’s a moment I’ll never forget.  I was newly married and my wife very openly told me she wanted the American dream of a house in suburbia with a fence, a dog and two kids.  I didn’t want to let her down.  I decided right then and there to make that my goal.  First things first…. the house.

Sometimes, we, as salespeople, ask ourselves why?  Why put myself through the torture of rejection day after day.  Why do I have to keep making prospecting/cold calls? The answer is GOALS.

Most people get into sales for one reason…Money.  It’s what makes the world go round, right?  Well I contest that it’s more than that.  What are you going to do with the money you earn?  Ask yourself this: Are you going to save it or spend it?  If the answer if save it, then for what?  If the answer if spend it, on what?  The main reason I was so successful in sales was because I constantly had my personal goals in line with my professional ones.

So what kind of goals am I talking about.  A mix of large, medium and short terms goals are needed for that daily focus.  That spark that will kick you into overdrive when you need it the most.  Usually, the large term goals feed the medium and on down the hill.  Without these goals you will say to yourself, “well I missed my sales goal……but I promise I’ll hit it next month.”

It’s not enough to simply have those goals in mind.  You HAVE to place a realistic time limit as to when you want to hit it, buy it, get it.  Once you have establish what those time limits are, make them public.  Share them with colleagues, family and friends.  They will politely hold you accountable through questioning.

So at the end of the day, what drives prosperity in sales?  You.