The Importance of Customer Service Within Freight Procurement
By Dean Corbolotti on May 26th, 2021
Customer service is key to building strong relationships that sustain success in any industry, but especially in freight procurement. That said, many parties within logistics fail to exceed defined service goals. Luckily, there are tools and tactics that shippers can use to strengthen customer service from 3PL providers. Here are a few suggestions.
For decades, freight procurement has been plagued with transparency issues. For example, freight brokers purposely hide actionable insights from shippers. Technology is breaking down these barriers and allowing customer service teams to provide advanced reporting on individual carrier activity, some even provide carrier cost per lane so shippers understand what a carrier (not the broker) wants to get paid. Detailed reports are more valuable to shippers because they provide actionable data which fuels stronger, educated decisions on how best to move freight.
Ongoing, proactive communication is key to customer success. But don't be fooled, high-level communications are not enough. In fact, generic reporting can cause more damage than good. Shippers are busy, so they demand more tailored communications from their logistics providers that talk specifically to their business needs, how the report/data impacts them, and what they can do as an output.
Trust & Honesty
Failing to meet, or exceed, customer expectations is never fun. No matter how hard customer service teams try, there will also be unplanned hiccups. It's always best to be proactive in delivering bad news so a proper course of action can be agreed upon quickly. This will help build trust amongst the customer service team and shipper.
For more information on this topic, read "The Hidden Secret in Freight Procurement: Customer Service" published on DC Velocity (5/24/21)