Transportation can be viewed as the glue that makes the supply chain model function.
The critical outcomes of the supply chain are to deliver the right product, at the right time, in the right quantity and quality, at the right cost, and to the right destination. Transportation plays an important role in making these "rights" happen. Another aspect of the importance of transportation is related to some of the strategies that are being used by companies to remain competitive in today's economy—for example, just-in-time inventory, lean logistics and manufacturing, and scheduled deliveries.
The challenge has been exacerbated by economic changes among transportation providers; shortages of drivers, higher fuel costs, and changes in driver hours regulations have led to what some individuals have called a transportation crisis or the "perfect storm." Transportation has gone from being a readily available commodity to potential users, especially in the 1990s, to today where transportation is scarce in some market