By: Brian Smith, CEO of Banyan Technology
As inflation hits industries across the country due to a weakening economy, the supply chain continues to see rising costs impact shipping as businesses shift their focus to maintaining the status quo. Rising shipping costs are exacerbating concerns for businesses trying to minimize economic impact to their bottom lines, but those heightened costs can be remedied with the right technology solution.
Even with an uncertain economy and more unforeseen changes to come in the supply chain, 3PLs should not panic. To prepare for this shift in the economy, implementing or switching to an innovative technology solution that allows them to offer rating and executing for over-the-road (OTR) shipments from a single screen is their best bet. Having shipping options that are financially and operationally efficient is key, in addition to flexibility within their business model to determine best cost and use-case scenario.
More Options to Help You Remain Nimble Amid Uncertainty
Shifting to a singular multi-mode digital solution helps 3PLs remain flexible in their operations by offering access to real-time alternatives to their traditionally used OTR shipping modes. For example, 3PL customers who typically ship freight using less-then-truckload (LTL) services may want to consider TL in the current economy to save money. The TL spot market has seen rates drop 40% since a February peak, according to FreightWaves.
3PLs may also want to offer an easier solution for consolidating loads, which is easier to do with a single platform for managing all modes, specifically for moving freight between modes properly and avoiding losses. Consolidating shipments helps to reduce freight spend by splitting the cost of the load either with other shipments or with freight from another 3PL customer. There also are fewer transfers and touchpoints when using load consolidation, allowing the shipments to reach their destinations faster while minimizing the opportunity for damage or losses.
Benefits of a Single Platform for All Modes
For OTR shipping, LTL has been leading the way in the adoption of digital solutions to transport freight. API connectivity established in this mode has been slow to translate into Truckload shipping. 3PLs can add value to their operations from a single digital platform offering real-time connectivity to a large pool of carriers for all modes, including integrations for load boards and spot rating creating API connectivity for Truckload shipments.
With the uncertainty of the current shipping environment and economy, a technology partner who can offer booking capabilities for shipping in multi-modes is invaluable. In addition to more options for carriers, multi-mode shipping capabilities also offer significant cost savings, better freight rating, and can increase the timeliness of deliveries.
Improving Freight Spend: With the use of a single solution for rating and executing all modes, 3PLs have access to historical data to predict which mode is best for similar shipments in the future. Reducing the number of systems amounts to faster, easier processing of orders, shipments, and scheduling.
Shipping Analytics and Reporting: Another key benefit of using a technology platform with multi-mode shipping capabilities is the increased analytics and advanced reporting functions that will help measure performance and share information within the supply chain.
Moving Freight Faster: Increase the number of available carrier connections within the supply chain by accessing more modes through a single freight management solution. These connections may include finding available capacity within a tight market, utilizing a different mode than usual to move freight more efficiently, consolidating freight when appropriate, and evaluating performance in all modes through data capture and analytics.
To be continued….