Your Competitive Outbound Logistics Strategy
Challenges with Your Current Logistics Strategy
We know that overseeing a competitive and cost effective outbound logistics strategy is no easy feat for businesses. The flow of goods beginning with the customer order, to shipment preparation at the warehouse, to the final delivery to the customer has never been more demanding. Meeting customer expectations for faster delivery combined with the market’s carrier capacity crunch and driver shortages are fueling challenges in supply chain management. So, here are some suggestions when striving for a competitive and agile outbound logistics strategy.
The ability to capture pertinent customer order data and provide real-time tracking and visibility of shipments allows shippers and logistics providers to stay competitive. Look for an integrated, cloud-based logistics technology system, as well as the resources or third party logistics provider who can analyze, and communicate this timely information. This allows you to quickly adjust and make changes to your outbound shipping strategy as you account for customer order volume changes, fluctuating carrier rates, as well as transit times, in order to save money on domestic or international shipping and offer optimal customer service.
Improve Warehouse Productivity
Improving warehouse processes can offer cost reductions and more efficient outbound logistics. Being agile becomes particularly important in warehousing as labor costs continue to rise, along with the demand for speedier deliveries. One of the ways to assess your operations is to select some specific performance metrics such as dock loading times and cost per line item shipped. This will allow you to evaluate ways to steam line processes, as well as potential opportunities for automation. In addition, make the most use of the cubic square feet in your warehouse storage, as this can often be overlooked.
When working with a freight broker or 3rd party logistics provider to manage your outbound or inbound logistical needs, remember that communication is vital. Clearly establish expectations, needs and goals so that all parties have a clear picture on the onset Do your research when hiring a logistics company. How will they work with you to enhance delivery performance, and how will those metrics be measured? What logistics technology platform will they utilize to give you, the customer a competitive advantage? Finally, strive for a collaborative approach when working with your logistics provider to add the most value to your overall logistics strategy.