As explained by Supply Chain 24/7, consumers’ expectations for faster fulfillment continue to grow, and millennials specifically are willing to pay up to 30% more to get products faster. Unfortunately, this demands a seamless, efficient supply chain process. The most straightforward delay from poor collaboration could lead to a missed final mile delivery or even chargebacks against the company. However, shippers that understand how improving final mile collaboration benefits the final mile and whole supply chain can reap higher profitability.
The problem with collaboration is simple. Carriers do not necessarily want to work together. It is in the best interest of the carrier to keep as many operations within their network. Of course, recent years have seen multiple carriers outsource their needs to smaller, localized delivery providers. This is especially true in areas where a carrier’s available resources are limited. Failure to collaborate and ensure a successful final mile customer experience will render the entire process obsolete and ineffective. Customers do not care what a carrier does to get products on time; they only care about getting what they expect. More importantly, a lack of collaboration in final mile logistics sets the carrier and shipper up for failure. Customers may expect to have products delivered in the home and installed, such as with the use of white-glove services. A lack of collaboration will result in products being resigned to traditional delivery models, such as “just leave on the porch” (JLOP), which increases the risk to the package, shipper and carrier.
Final mile collaboration is a critical aspect of effective supply chain management. It eliminates uncertainty concerning when carriers will hand off a shipment between one another, and if Carrier A misses the delivery to Carrier B, subsequent movements will be late. There was a time when final mile collaboration seemed like a mere extra, offering a way for carriers to work together and keep some costs under control. With the rise of urbanization of society and the internet, final mile delivery strategies changed. Increased strain on supply chain resources will require more collaboration among carriers and shippers, explains Transport Topics. Such collaboration ensures the continuation of supply chain efficiency, allowing for better planning of shipment logistics, which reduces fuel costs and other expenses along the way.
Finding ways to increase collaboration can feel like a challenge. Shippers may have already implemented processes to work with numerous carriers across the country. Unfortunately, such shippers may fail to realize the ease and wide-ranging benefits of taking a straightforward step. This step is investing in a platform built on the final mile and TMS collaboration. In other words, the TMS becomes the system of record, responsible for managing the entire shipping journey from the first mile through the final mile, and advanced features and a modern TMS, such as the Cerasis Rater, can transform final mile processes into a turn-key operation.
Demands of consumers will continue to grow in value. Today, customers expect same-day delivery. Tomorrow, customers may expect delivery by the end of the hour. Final mile collaboration is crucial to taking advantage of the full scale of a nationwide e-commerce boom and applying all available logistics resources. Of course, working with an expert third-party logistics provider (3PL) and using the right systems, including the Cerasis Rater, will light the path toward success.
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