Logistics Case Study: Lead Times for Manufacturer

GEODIS helped a major mining manufacturer to optimize their lead times and on-time deliveries.

Key takeaways


  • A large, international manufacturer needed to stabilize lead times for their air and ocean freight 
  • GEODIS optimized lead times, provided customs brokerage, and helped our client to meet their sustainability commitments
  • We helped our client achieve a 100% accuracy lead time rate for ocean freight
  • We also supported the successful delivery of large and hard-to-handle industrial products to remote locations

Our supply chain case studies show how we use our logistics expertise to improve business outcomes for our clients. 


Facts about our manufacturing client


  • Global engineering company based in Europe
  • Manufactures equipment for the mining and infrastructure industries
  • Strong presence in the U.S. and has customers in 150 countries around the world
  • Supports moves to more sustainable manufacturing and distribution

Background with our manufacturing client

Our client needed someone who they could strategically partner with to support their mission to “drive the productivity and sustainability transformation in their industry.” GEODIS originally began our partnership with this client's parent company in the 1970s, so we already had strong relationships, familiarity with the company, knowledge of the industry, and a track record of success.

Challenges for our manufacturing client

Our client needed help supporting their air freight volumes between the U.S. and Europe, and their air and ocean freight between the U.S. and Australia. Consistently delivering on time was essential as late shipments and downtime in the mining industry can cost thousands of dollars. Part of maintaining a reliable delivery schedule is predicting and stabilizing lead times.


Our client also needed comprehensive customs and trade services to maximize compliance when importing and exporting products. Once these large and complex industrial products arrived in the country, they required delivery to remote locations, all while maintaining quality and delivery speed.


Finally, our client needed support for their long‑term sustainability goals: to halve CO2 emissions from air and ocean transport. Above all else, the business needed a dependable, proactive, and collaborative logistics provider.

GEODIS Cargo Loading

Lead time optimization and rerouting solutions

We worked closely with our client to quickly develop flexible solutions. These solutions were tested during the pandemic, where shutdowns and capacity issues created unusually long lead times. GEODIS was able to use our extensive network to find alternative carriers and routes that ensured cargo was delivered on time.


We achieved this by combining several services:


  • Dependable, multimodal transportation services
  • Cross-docking with our routes between the U.S. and Australia
  • Rerouting and route optimization via our IRIS tracking platform


These solutions helped us to stabilize lead times and product delivery, with complete tracking and visibility throughout.


Shipping for out-of-gauge product solutions

We also developed solutions for shipping mining equipment. These products are often oversized, overweight, and high‑value cargo including large cranes and drill rigs. We transported these via breakbulk shipping and used our industrial project expertise to deliver out-of-gauge shipments. That also involved us delivering to remote locations as part of our last-mile delivery services.


Customs brokerage solutions

GEODIS supplied our client with a knowledgeable customs brokerage team. They ensure compliance, consult on customs and foreign trade, and assist with customer service needs.

Project Logistics

Sustainable logistics measurement

GEODIS supports our client's long‑term sustainability initiatives to reduce the environmental impact of the supply chain. We help them achieve this through advanced modeling and emissions reporting. This includes the systematic reporting of carbon emissions generated by our online emissions calculation tool.


This tool allows our clients to compare the environmental impact of various transportation modes (air, rail, road, sea, inland waterway, etc.) around the world and estimate the carbon footprint of an individual shipment’s journey. The tool highlights transport modes and emissions reduction options, allowing our clients to make the most sustainable choice.


Manufacturing client results and outcomes

We combined our deep knowledge of our client's business sector with a flexible and customized approach. This helped our client to improve lead-time accuracy:


  • 83% accuracy lead time rate for air freight
  • 31% increase in ocean freight lead time accuracy
  • 100% accuracy lead time rate for ocean freight

How GEODIS can help

GEODIS is one of the biggest industrial logistics and transportation providers in the U.S. and around the world. Get in touch with GEODIS to see how we can meet your customs brokerage and freight forwarding needs.