Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Teamwork Key to Oakland’s Success

By Karen Robes Meeks

Earlier this month, Port of Oakland Executive Director Chris Lytle opined on how teamwork among the supply chain stakeholders helped Oakland rebound from the congestion that afflicted West Coast ports four years ago to making record cargo moves today.

“All links in the supply chain came together to dig us out of the hole,” Lytle said to an audience of 300. “Labor… management… cargo owners… everyone joined in common purpose – to make Oakland better.”

To continue to thrive as a business, Oakland created an Efficiency Task Force made up of stakeholders such as labor, terminal operators, carriers, shippers and rail operators to identify weaknesses and find solutions.

The port also enacted a series of changes including night gates for truck drives, appointments for cargo pickup and “consolidated marine terminals to absorb excess capacity that depressed cargo-handling rates,” according to the port.

Today, almost $800 million are being invested in the Oakland port and the task force, now 50 members strong, meet quarterly to refine port operations.

“None of this would have happened without all parties collaborating on change,” Lytle said. No mistrust… no misunderstandings… no misalignment… everyone was at the table and the result was a roadmap to a better future.”