Supply Chain Execs Respond as Pandemic Creates E-Commerce Surge

4 Feb 2021


The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically changed our lives, and each one of us likely has a personal story to tell that underscores that fact. But there are also stories to be told of sweeping changes that virtually all of us have felt. One of those is the altered state of the global supply chain.

The supply chain is, after all, an element of daily life that has an impact, either directly or indirectly, on just about everyone on the planet. The pandemic put a spotlight on the critical nature of this industry. Truck drivers and warehouse employees became everyday heroes on the front lines, making sure essential goods got where they needed to go. At the root of those changes is the explosive growth in e-commerce, as homebound consumers embraced online purchasing for everything from food and other necessities to furniture and appliances.

Two senior executives from XPO Logistics, a top-10 global supply chain services provider, recently answered Area Development’s questions about their new normal. Ashfaque Chowdhury is president of XPO’s supply chain operations in North America, Asia, and Latin America. Erik Caldwell is president of the company’s last-mile business, which delivers heavy goods to consumers’ homes on behalf of some of the largest companies in the world. They oversee two critical pieces of the supply chain that e-commerce has impacted directly.

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