Using a TMS for inbound logistics is an excellent way to restore confidence within inbound supply chains and gain visibility into their associated processes and actions. Deploying a TMS for inbound logistics offers 10 unique benefits that shippers need to understand.
Transportation management accounts for 50 percent of a company’s average costs, notes PLS Logistics. Regardless of your industry, such as manufacturing or resell, everything starts with effective inbound freight management. Unfortunately, inadequate control over inbound freight will lead to lost costs, poor visibility, reduced reliability, higher carrying costs, and subpar customer service. However, a TMS provides insight and visibility to manage inbound freight and save money by reducing the risk of these problems coming to fruition.
Using a TMS improves on-time deliveries, reducing delays between replenishment and filling customer orders improving scheduling, reducing strain and stress on drivers. It also lowers putaway and unloading labor costs too.
A fundamental problem with today’s inbound supply chain activities derives from their complexities. A single product may undergo hundreds of touch points for manufacturing to delivery to your facility. Therefore, the opportunities for miscommunication are equal to the number of touch points and transactions implying shippers should work extra to reduce miscommunications. A TMS for inbound logistics leverages a standard system of record to ensure miscommunications do not arise.
As more companies expand into global territories for e-commerce improvement, companies must focus on the use of multimodal shipping for inbound freight management. Nearly half of the U.S. makes purchases from overseas, reports Inbound Logistics, so ensuring a proper, inbound and international freight plan is key to success.
The volume of parcels today is expanding, as reinforced by the general rate increases announced by significant carriers at the start of 2019. As more businesses work with third-party marketplaces, including Walmart and Amazon, as suppliers, shippers will need to gain additional control over the incoming volume of parcels, and a TMS provides the solution.
The use of cross-docking is another excellent benefit of deploying a TMS. Cross-docking refers to the unloading of product on a dock and reloading onto an outbound truck. Since this process involves both inbound and outbound freight occurring as a single action, understanding inbound and outbound freight activities, as well as their nuances, is essential.
Parcels are increasing, and in tandem, growing economies are presenting new challenges as LTL capacity and volume search. Fortunately, the use of a TMS for inbound logistics allows for the consolidation of parcels into LTL shipments and LTL shipments into full truckload shipments, reducing inbound freight costs and providing greater accountability and scheduling benefits to your dock.
When problems do arise with inbound freight, using a TMS for inbound logistics allows for streamlined auditing processes. Users can drill down into data to understand what happened, why it happened and what is necessary to prevent it from happening in the future. In other words, the TMS allows for better freight claims management and much more.
Improvements within inbound logistics have a direct effect on customer service. As the stress and costs of inbound freight management decrease, customers realize better service levels, reduce costs and benefits of working with a given company. Therefore, they are more likely to shop with you, not your competitors.
While we have already discussed the dock benefits of using a TMS for inbound logistics, it is essential to consider the benefit of better yard management as well. Improvements on the top translate into direct improvements within your yard which are a result of drivers moving through the yard to dock faster, lowering risk of detention fees and even improving eligibility for “Shipper of Choice” status.
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