In early 2016, Assistant Professor of Supply Chain Management Steven Carnovale started a project with a group of his colleagues: The Logistics Manager’s Index (LMI).
“The idea was discussed between myself, Dr. Dale Rogers of Arizona State University, Dr. Zac Rogers of Colorado State University, Dr. Sengun Yeniyurt of Rutgers and Dr. Ron Lembke of the University of Nevada, Reno for some time. We started the project because logistics is really a leading indicator of economic activity, in contrast to, say, GDP, which to a large degree is a lagging indicator. Also, and perhaps more specifically, there really isn’t much out there that concretely measures transportation prices, warehousing prices, and inventory levels in one concrete metric,” said Dr. Carnovale.
The team began by publishing their findings, data gathered from a panel of over 100 logistics professionals, six times a year. Recently, Carnovale and his colleagues began measuring for the index monthly to get a more accurate reading.
“Because we have the length of data we have, we can start to really see the wisdom of the crowd, as part of the questionnaire asks about one year in the future on each of the collected metrics. These folks are incredibly accurate in their predictions!” said Carnovale.
The LMI gained recognition as a data source for The Wall Street Journal and FreightWaves in early November of 2019. “It’s such a pleasure to work with this team on this project, and when both The Wall Street Journal and FreightWaves mentioned us it was really just a fantastic codification of the value that the LMI provides as well as its practical applicability. So, to say the least, we were all ecstatic,” said Carnovale.
Carnovale and his team have set up a website for the Logistics Manager’s Index and have written an article for the Rutgers Business Review regarding the LMI’s value to the supply chain management industry. “Ideally, I think we would all like to hear NPR’s morning edition or CNBC mention the LMI the way that similar supply chain indexes are mentioned,” said Carnovale. “Many more people are looking at it and it’s gaining real traction, which is great!”