How Logistics Providers Use Transportation Management Systems to Offer Shippers Technology and Service
Transportation Management Systems (TMS) technology has become a vital tool for logistics experts serving shipping clients. According to the 2016 Third Party Logistics Study, shippers continued to highly depend on the IT services of 3PLs and managing those IT-based services is a necessary core competency of 3PL providers. Since shipping demands continue to increase to serve the global marketplace, with greater speed, efficiency and economical rates to stay competitive, now more than ever before logistics providers are utilizing TMS systems to achieve business solutions for their clients.
Improving Supply Chain Management with Technology
Evolving transportation management technology is being utilized to enhance supply chain management. In the study, 60% of respondents reported using technology to heighten visibility within shipment orders and inventory. Another 40% claimed to utilize technology for planning within transportation management. Moreover, 3PLs have been utilizing technology to choose the most advantageous transportation modes, carriers and shipping routes. Smaller companies are able to leverage the benefits of TMS through their third party logistic provider or freight broker.
TMS technology has evolved from the traditional, on-site system to a cloud-based platform where real-time information and can be accessed by shippers, logistics personnel and customers - offering information including carrier rates, optimal shipping routes, and most efficient transportation mode based on shipment volume and requirements. This process allows for better decision-making and shipment scheduling. It also greatly increases visibility from freight departure to final destination through electronic tracking and communication, allowing for immediate response time to changes or issues that may arise on route, so that logistics can swiftly and efficiently.
Another advantage of a TMS system is the carrier profiling capabilities. With over 220,000+ active carriers in North America, logistics providers such as Freight Fox, believe that profiling and managing this crucial data gives their shipping customers a competitive advantage. By collecting and managing important information such as preferred lanes, safety ratings, insurance verification, equipment type, and even service ratings. With this vital data, the most reliable shipping option is always easier to identify.
Room for Growth & Improvements
Meeting customer demands in the shipping and logistics industry is ever changing, and this means freight management providers are continually looking for new technology advancements. In fact, the 2016 Third Party Logistics Study found that 58% of logistics providers are investing in new IT capabilities to better meet shipper demands. Current IT capabilities can be improved as the complex shipping needs of customers continues to grow and change rapidly, and TMS technology providers continue to produce new products to meet these requirements.