BLAIR COUNTY, Pa (WTAJ) – Ward Transport and Logistics has been servicing Central Pa since the 1930s, but they’re now facing an unwelcome challenge.
That unwelcome challenge is the high inflation rates, and just about every business has been feeling the pressure.
“We’ve not seen anything to this perspective or this magnitude since well before my lifetime in the 1970s, ” Bill Ward, Ward Transport and Logistics President said.
The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that inflation increased by over nine percent in June. Making it the biggest jump since 1981. The current fuel prices, equipment costs, and insurance rates all combined with the labor shortage means their hand is forced to change their rates too.
“We try to be very transparent with our customers. This is what we’re experiencing, and this is why, year-over-year, we might have to take an increase to compensate for that,” ward said.
However, Ward isn’t just experiencing truck driver shortages. Their shortages extend to the rest of the company as well.
“We’re seeing it with our doc associates, we’re seeing it with our clerical and administrative team, even up to management. So at all levels we’re seeing that, at all locations we’re seeing that,” ward says.
Ward wants to be an employer of choice, which means not only increasing wages, but also increasing productivity.
“We stress that we’re a team here. It’s important that we show up to work every day and do our jobs. You have to really work to keep costs in line,” Ward said.
Ward Transport and Logistics hasn’t seen a spike at this magnitude in over 50 years and believes that it’s going to take teamwork and communication with its customers to adjust.
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Ward also added that his team expects inflation to stabilize, but not to decrease significantly for at least the rest of the year.