Transparency in freight procurement is paramount to success. In an industry riddled with moving parts, it’s important that shippers see the complete picture so they can maximize supply chain efficiency. Unfortunately, multiple roadblocks lay in the way. Here are a few things shippers, and transportation departments, should consider in order to cultivate a transparent freight procurement operation.
Obtain Actionable Data
Many important freight procurement questions still go unanswered because there are massive data gaps in transportation and logistics, which makes it difficult for shippers to effectively manage today’s market volatility. Ideally, a shipper would turn to data to quickly uncover how to optimize the carrier network so they can maximize the transportation budget and deliver products on time. They’d have data at their fingertips that identify which carriers to replace, keep, and/ or add. With smart tools that provide actionable data outputs, shippers have the ability to gain deeper insights so proper carrier adjustments can be made.
Limit Freight Brokers
From pricing to performance data, brokers are known for opacity. Today, new intelligent automation technology empowers shippers to eliminate the need for freight brokers by providing direct access to a healthy freight marketplace full of compliant, asset-based carriers. When the freight broker is eliminated, and carriers bid directly on loads, shippers no longer need to wonder how much of the truckload cost went to the broker versus the carrier. And because carriers set truckload prices– not non-transparent brokers– shippers obtain a clearer picture of the true-market cost to haul a specific load.
Transparency Within the Team
It’s just as important to have transparency in-house than it is to get it from outside partners and vendors. Successful freight procurement teams collaborate with other departments. They identify co-dependencies and align on how one team’s actions impact the other. They set goals and have a formal process to measure, track and report out. For example, the operations team can be impacted by the transportation team when there is no carrier to haul finished goods, causing a production bottleneck. By providing full transparency and having constant communication, potential disasters can be averted.