1) When did you begin working at ROAR Logistics and what made you want to work there?
I began working at ROAR as a Carrier Development Specialist in June of 2015 after an internship at our parent company, Rich Products. They suggested that I apply here, and I got the job a few weeks later! I spent 4 years with our domestic team before joining the international division in April of 2018.
2) What is your job title and describe your position at ROAR Logistics:
I am an International Freight Forwarding Agent; we organize the logistics of international shipments, including negotiating rates with steamship lines, dray carriers and overseas agents. In the International Division, our suite of services can involve any part of the supply chain. We arrange foreign origin handling, ocean and airfreight transport, and final mile delivery solutions anywhere in the world. We are licensed by the Department of Homeland Security to conduct US Customs business, and by the Federal Maritime Commission to operate as an NVOCC and must adhere to rigorous regulations that govern our conduct as an international freight forwarder.
3) How have you grown in your position / how do you hope to grow in the future?
There is a stark contrast between domestic and international logistics services. The life of an international shipment is much longer and can require our attention for weeks if not months as shipments travel the globe. This took a while to get used to after living in the fast-paced truck broker environment for several years. Recently, I achieved accreditation as a Certified Export Specialist and had the opportunity to travel to Phuket, Thailand with Bob III to visit with our worldwide agents at the Cooperative Network Annual Conference. It was an incredible experience, and I hope to continue to travel and further my education while learning important leadership and strategizing skills through new experiences.
4) Describe what it’s like working on a team at ROAR and how this has been beneficial to you:
We have a small team, but the expertise from my associates is unmatched, and working on this team is extremely gratifying (they’re also all tremendous people!) I learn something new from my leadership team and co-workers every day, as we all specialize in different areas of the industry. The extensive knowledge my colleagues bring to our day-to-day operations is so beneficial to my growth here at ROAR and to our team as a whole.
5) What is the craziest challenge you’ve had to overcome on the job?
As the Covid 19 pandemic spread to different countries at different times, we were constantly faced with new challenges; mainly dealing with the fallout from what specific country was on lockdown during a specific time frame. At the height of the pandemic, a vessel got stuck in the Suez Canal, a direct route between the North Atlantic and northern Indian oceans. These combined issues caused a domino-effect shipping delay on 10’s of thousands of international shipments.
This led to the re-routing of containers, major vessel schedule delays, and scores of booking cancellations/rolls, all of which our team dealt with daily for most of 2021. In the US, we still feel the reverberations of the pandemic in 2023 with less empty equipment available, limited space on vessels, and fluctuating market rates. Ironically, 2022 was our best year in the International Division, and I feel it was due to our flexibility as a team. We learned how to strategize trends we saw coming, and our associates stepped up and provided great service while navigating uncharted waters. This flexibility led to our customers relying on ROAR INTL more than ever to handle their shipments when other forwarders could not pivot quickly enough to react to market conditions.