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LAST UPDATED: September 10th, 2020

What started as a family-run operation over 80 years ago, has grown into the Schneider National of today with international trucking and logistics capability and over 190 facilities worldwide. Schneider was founded in 1935 and is based in Green Bay, Wisconsin. It serves the 48 contiguous United States, Canada, Mexico and China. Schneider provides its customers with regional and long-haul trucking, expedited, dedicated, bulk, intermodal, brokerage, warehousing, supply chain management, port logistics, and cross-border.

Schneider National is one of the largest truckload carriers in the United States and services retail, food, beverage, consumer nondurable customers among others. It is also able to haul certain classifications of hazardous materials. 

Hiring a larger trucking and logistics company like Schneider can have many advantages. A large company like Schneider National can purchase fuel in bulk, has a large fleet size (over 9000 tractors), boasts robust account relationships, and greater access to drivers. These factors can give customers more options, and greater reliability. Schneider’s customer list should give potential customers confidence in hiring the company to fulfill trucking and logistics needs. It boasts a long list customers, including: 

  • P&G
  • Coca-Cola
  • Lowe’s
  • Walmart
  • Target
  • John Deere
  • Anheuser-Busch

In addition to its impressive list of customers, Schneider has won many industry awards. It placed fifth, up from seventh in 2019, on Transport Topics’ 2020 list of the 100 Largest For-Hire Carriers in North America. It also placed at 18 on Transport Topics’ list of the 50 Largest Logistics Companies in North America in 2020. It has also achieved the EPA’s SmartWay Excellence Award which recognizes exceptional industry leaders that are improving freight efficiency and contributing to cleaner air throughout their supply chains. The awardees are chosen from over 3,700 SmartWay participants and a limited number make this list; however, many of Schneider’s competitors are also on the list. 

Schneider National also has demonstrated its commitment to sustainability in several ways. This helps it stand out from other large carriers; all of which demonstrate varying degrees of commitment to enhancing fleet and company sustainability. It was named to the Food Logistics’ 2020 Top Green Providers list which recognizes companies whose products, services or exemplary leadership is enhancing sustainability within the food and beverage industry. Food Logistics’ evaluated Schneider National on its EPA SmartWay participation, retrofits that produce measurable reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, LEED-certified facilities, facilities with solar panels, and LED lighting and other energy-saving installations. 

Its impressive fleet, facility, and company associates make it a strong competitor to provide service to any customer. It is a large-scale carrier, logistics, and storage provider.

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The Good

  • Schneider FreightPower™ Marketplace
  • Going Green
  • International Reach
  • Online Tracking and EDI

Schneider FreightPower™ Marketplace

Earlier this year Schneider launched a new marketplace, Schneider FreightPower™, to give shippers access to an expanded and flexible capacity network, on-demand storage, and on-demand transportation. It is meant to leverage its larger trailer pool and carrier relationships to help shippers of all sizes find capacity, including in challenging markets as well as for surge capacity needs. This service places Schneider National on the same level with several competitors that have a similar offering for their customers. 

Going Green

Like many of the other large carriers, Schneider is preparing for a greener future. It uses low-emissivity glass in its offices and shops which reflects heat to its source and helps buildings stay cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. It has installed low-velocity, high-flow ceiling fans in its shop, installed HVAC controllers to maximize efficiency and utilizing metal-clad insulated sandwich panels on the exterior of the buildings to improve insulation, and added large wall-mounted exhaust for heat dissipation in all warehouses.

Most new tractors added to Schneider’s fleet are equipped with a battery-powered auxiliary power unit, which reduces idling of the main engine. It is also transitioning to the latest clean-diesel emission compliant engines, with over 99 percent of its fleet meeting 2014 emissions standards and 68 percent of the fleet meeting 2017 emissions standards. The company has improved fuel efficiency by 16.9 percent since 2008, and it reduced fuel consumption by 9.6 million gallons between 2018 and 2019.

It is also testing the Freightliner eCascadia, a Class 8 tractor battery-electric vehicle, through 2021 to address any potential challenges and help the company improve on future vehicle design. Schneider also participates in Freightliner’s Electric Vehicle Council, which has 35 members and held its first meeting in October 2018 demonstrating its commitment to transitioning to more sustainable transportation options.

This dedication to testing and implementing future sustainable practices can be beneficial to customers in terms of lowering costs and allowing them to work with a partner that shares their values.  

International Reach

Many of Schneider National’s competitors ship to Canada and Mexico. Schneider not only provides carrier and logistics services in both of those countries, but it has also expanded to domestic China, one of the world’s largest markets. Its ability to provide carrier services, freight management and warehousing in China sets this trucking company apart from the rest. 

It has 500 associates operating at 26 locations in China and has the ability to deliver to over 1,000 locations in more than 300 cities in China. Its network in China includes a network of more than 2,000 carriers with access to eight distribution centers. 

Online Tracking and EDI

Today’s customers want the convenience of instant updates and information on their shipments. Many industry leaders utilize electronic data interchange (EDI) to facilitate this. Schneider National has extensive EDI experience and has the ability to support numerous transaction sets that are used by a wide base of customers. 

It also offers its customers Schneider Online Access, a self-service online tool that allows them to track orders, retrieve order documents, and request rate quotes online. It is accessed via a web browser and provides customers with the data points required for optimal shipping and logistics planning. 

Most trucking carriers have some version of an online system like this for their customers but they vary widely in quality and usability. Schneider National’s Online Access online tool also allows customers to view detailed tracking information not just status references. It also allows customers to create customized search queries with a variety of order information and even export this information to Excel.

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The Bad

  • Mixed Employee Reviews
  • Does Not Offer Final Mile Service

Mixed Employee Reviews

When looking for carrier reviews online, it is more common to find them from trucking companies employees rather than customers. Schneider National appears to have mostly positive reviews from its trucking employees which is significant. Many industry leaders, and many more smaller carriers, do not achieve such positive ratings from their drivers. However, Schneider National does seem to have negative reviews mostly from its warehouse and other employees. This could impact a potential customer’s logistics and warehousing experience with the company.

Does Not Offer Final Mile Service

Schneider National does not offer Final Mile shipping or logistics services. Final Mile or last mile delivery provides delivery from a customer’s or carrier’s warehouse directly to threshold delivery of a residential or commercial consumer. This service is often critical to a company that is shipping mattresses, furniture, appliances, fitness equipment, store fixtures, and other large and heavy goods that require two people to deliver. 

It is typically most convenient for a customer that is going to require this sort of delivery service for its clients to work with a carrier that can provide for the full life cycle of the delivery process. 

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The Bottom Line

Schneider National is one of the largest trucking and logistics providers in the United States and also provides international service to Canada, Mexico, and China. Its reach across the 48 contiguous United States and into the United States’ three largest trading partners make it an impressive option for customers looking for trucking and logistics solutions. 

If you are looking to work with a larger carrier that has an impressive list of customers, Schneider National will be a great option. Some of the world’s largest companies use its services to move freight. 

It may make sense to look at its competitors if you are a company that will need to be delivering large and heavy freight such as furniture directly to your consumers’ doorsteps. Schneider National does not offer Final Mile services, which means you would need to secure an additional carrier. This could lead to increased costs and inconvenience for both you and your customers. 

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