The Bottom Line

How to Navigate Outbound Freight: It’s Much More than Getting Goods from Here to There

Posted by Mark Mrva on Jun 16, 2019 3:00:00 PM

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Efficiency Is Everything. Price Is Not.

By now you might’ve realized that just about every market is a “seller’s market”.  For you, “efficiency” means paying the right price for whatever service you need while maintaining or improving quality of service. For them, “efficiency” means making the most advantageous deal in the shortest amount of time.

For today’s budget-conscious executive, money and time must work together in order to guarantee the best result for their customers. This is especially true when it comes to time-sensitive areas such as outbound freight - a market undergoing considerable change today.

There are several obstacles that can get in the way of an efficient and cost-effective enterprise-wide freight strategy.

The Freight Industry is Now Facing a Unique Set of Challenges.

In the freight industry, specifically the trucking industry, there is an ever-increasing shortage of drivers – existing truck drivers are aging, and few younger replacements are coming in to fill open positions.

Why? Because many drivers are required to spend multiple nights, if not weeks, at a time away from home. In addition, drivers are often required not only to deliver their freight to its destination, but to unload it as well.  On top of these issues, the government is mandating many new requirements pertaining to road time and rest time, often requiring time-consuming reporting procedures and making long trips even longer.

To avoid these costly driver-related issues, many companies are considering other transportation options, such as rail or alternate FTL and LTL options. But these options come with their own unique pitfalls and costs, too. For example, it might be cheaper and more reliable in harsh weather to ship by rail, but it will certainly add time to the delivery cycle.

Putting in the effort to compare each feature, cost, and specification of all available transportation methods is tedious, but necessary. Have you considered these choices in your own transportation operations?

Technology or Intensive Labor: Which Will Find You the Best Solution? Where Should You Invest?

Scheduling logistics for delivering cross-state and even internationally can be a huge task if performed manually, but does it have to be that way? 

It will take a devoted, hyper-aware team of resources to bring freight costs down without risking interruptions to order fulfillment, and it won’t happen overnight. Further, as transportation prices are always changing, this will require constant monitoring and adjustment.  Luckily, technology can make things much easier.

Utilizing the right technology to automate and lower your freight costs might require a greater investment up front, but it has the potential to save millions of dollars and thousands of man-hours in the long-run.

Even the best team of workers can’t compete with modern technology. Many have found success in loading hundreds of specifics into their logistics software, and quickly find the most efficient way to ship or re-route time-sensitive deliveries.

Wheeling And Dealing For Time, Effort, And Money

The Bottom Line: Think about all the priorities that could be accomplished if your team members could stop burning hours organizing and re-organizing a logistics spreadsheet.  In our experience, we’ve learned that even if you’ve recently cut your freight costs, there is always room for improvement regardless of the size of your team, business, or industry.

If you’re ready to scale up your outbound freight game, consider partnering with a resource already aware of all the small intricacies that come with formulating the right plan for your unique business, no matter how massive or complex.

To learn more about how SRM manufacturing can assist in your outbound freight, contact us to talk to a representative today.

Topics: Manufacturing, Technology, Freight,, transport