Volvo eyeing introduction of electric trucks to Europe in 2019
Volvo Trucks will start selling electric trucks in Europe in 2019, and the first units will be put into operation with select customers in 2018, it has announced.
It has also reaffirmed its commitment to offer electric trucks to American customers, saying: "Work toward commercialisation of electric trucks in North America is ongoing as advancements in battery technology accelerate viability for North American duty cycles and energy demands for a broad range of applications", but has not yet given a target date.
The Swedish-based firm said more transport assignments can be carried out at night, resulting in fewer trucks competing for road space during rush hour.
"Electromobility is fully in line with Volvo Trucks’ long-term commitment to sustainable urban development and zero emissions,” said Göran Nyberg, President of Volvo Trucks North America.
"By using electrically powered and quieter trucks for goods transport in urban areas, we meet several challenges simultaneously. Without disturbing noise and exhaust gases, it will be possible to operate in more sensitive city centers. Transport may also take place throughout less busy periods, for example in late evening and at night.
"This will reduce the burden on the roads during daytime rush-hour traffic, allowing both the road network and vehicles to be utilised far more effectively than today.”
“Urban distribution and other pick-up and delivery applications are a starting point for battery-powered electric trucks, but we envision broader deployment of electric trucks for freight movement in North America as technologies and the market mature."
In a release, the company said that "in order to improve the quality of life in urban environments, more sustainable transport solutions need to be adopted", also noting that replacing smaller vehicles with larger trucks would cut down on traffic, pollution and accidents.
Keith Brandis Volvo Trucks North America vice president for product planning, commented: "Electric vehicles will be part of our future, but the vehicles themselves are only one part of what is needed for large-scale electrification to succeed.
"Enabling long-term sustainable transport is a complex issue that requires a holistic and wide range of measures. We are working closely with customers, cities, suppliers of batteries and charging infrastructure, and other key stakeholders to create the necessary framework for battery-powered electric trucks.”
A definite rival for Volvo in the electric truck market will be Elon Musk's Tesla, which has already attracted orders from the likes of DHL Supply Chain, Anheuser-Busch and PepsiCo for its new Semi-truck.
In addition, Daimler has delivered the first batch of its fully-electric FUSO eCanter truck to customers in Europe.
The German automotive company unveiled its new design in October last year and vehicles have now been dispatched, with DHL its highest profile customer on the continent.
ASCM: Supply chain pay gap closes in under 40s
The pay gap between men and women working in supply chain under the age of 40 has finally reached parity, according to the Association for Supply Chain Management’s latest annual Supply Chain Salary and Career Report.
The gender pay gap in this age group had been narrowing over the past two years, the ASCM’s previous surveys show, and in 2021 has closed entirely. Women report a median salary of $81,000 annually, while men earn a median annual salary of $79,000. Across all age brackets, men report a median salary of $82,000 and women $80,000.
Other highlights from the ASCM report
- 95% of supply chain professionals kept their job through the pandemic
- The typical starting salary for a supply chain professional is $60,000
- 48% of supply chain professionals now work from home
- 88% of survey respondents find supply chain a fulfilling career path
But there is still work to be done in closing the divide in those over the age of 40. Older men are still earning far more than their female peers, with a discrepancy of between $12,000 and $23,000 annually. ASCM’s report does not definitively conclude why this disparity remains, but says women who began their careers several decades ago may have started out on lower salaries. They may also have missed out on steady wage increases and career development after taking time away from work to have and raise families.
It is also likely that the pay gap in over 40s is affected by a lack of women in executive leadership positions. A recent Gartner study found that, while women now represent 41% of the supply chain workforce - a five year high - only 15% of executive level positions are held by women. That figure is a decline of two per cent on 2020.
Supply chain’s racial pay gap remains
For the first time, ASCM’s annual survey also looked into the pay gap between ethnicities, finding that the median salary for black professionals was 12% less than their white peers, and Latinos earned on average 14% less. That represents a divide of between $9,000 and &10,000 in real terms. Asian professionals earned a median salary of $80,000, compared with the $83,000 for white professionals.
Abe Eshkenazi, the ASCM chief executive, said reporting on and acknowledging lingering wage disparity was not enough: “Supply chain organisations must lead the way by creating environment where diverse talent is valued, included and developed. The need for supply chain professionals has never been greater, so now is the time to expand the aperture to include diversity of thought, influence and input — particularly for women and people of colour.”
Read the full report: ASCM 2021 Supply Chain Salary and Career Report