Freight Communications

How to Select the Right Freight Collaboration Platform

For those looking to improve productivity in the supply chain, choosing the right freight collaboration platform can help do so. Navigating the market with the proper equipment and data is imperative to keeping afloat through the upcoming peak season. With technology packages and upgrades for supply chain management, utilizing services like digital freight forwarding and locating scalable assets will help boost profitability for businesses. 

1. Assess Your Company Requirements

To determine the best freight collaboration software, companies need to gauge their needs. Continuously auditing and monitoring data can help identify the weak spots within the business. Doing so will also help determine if the system needs updating, new collaborative technology that pairs with existing technology, or an entirely new system altogether. 

It’s also critical that you keep your target clients involved in these conversations. Actively ask your loyal and new customers how you can improve, what their team wants, what their own customers are seeking out as it relates to your business.  At the end of the day, your client’s success is your success, so being aware of what needs are down the chain becomes that much more critical to shaping what these requirements might look like. 

Customer-facing operations should generally dictate internal tools and processes and be complementary – driving value for both parties.

2. Think About the Network Needs for Collaboration

Supply chain and transportation companies need collaboration to enhance their existing measures. As e-commerce and digital freight take up more space in the supply chain, sometimes the network needs expansion. New considerations, players, expectations need to be met. That is, if you aim to be an indispensable and differentiated logistics partner to your clients.

By utilizing freight collaboration, carriers, brokers, and shippers can use a more manageable platform as the network grows and again, providing value in things like transparency which is important for all the stakeholders trying to get that cargo to its destination, on time and on budget. Taking the time to implement user-friendly software can enhance performance at every level. 

3. Ensure the Freight Collaboration Platform Is Instantly Scalable and Cloud-Based

One of the more essential functions of adding new platforms is ensuring compatibility with current technology. The chosen freight collaboration platform needs to instantly enhance and automatically scale with the growth of the business. Cloud-based software systems connect to the internet and can backup information instantaneously. They retain the information you can easily search for and pull up on any device with a 3G connection now. These benefits of freight collaboration keep productivity up without significant software updates and overhauls to systems. 

4. Verify That It Integrates With All Major E-Commerce Shopping Systems

Finding the proper freight collaboration to work with an e-commerce 3PL and other major e-commerce systems can be challenging. Implementing those software systems must unanimously and seamlessly integrate with those platforms to keep up with the current market demands. According to Inbound Logistics, finding the right TMS, WMS, and other collaborative technology will increase productivity and profitability. The market expects to grow at an average rate of 16% a year until 2025 – and if you’re not set up with the right systems to scale up with, then you can also generally expect a far lower growth number for your own business.

5. Always Look for Opportunities for Improvement Through Analytics Inclusive Systems

Obtaining new technology and the implementation can be vastly different. They all must work in tandem and yet, remain completely inclusive. The individual strokes paint the “whole picture,” for what’s actually happening in your operations through data. 

One without the other can leave out vital information that is necessary to keep the flow of the supply chain going. In addition to visibility, having good data, and deeper analytics to draw from makes finding improvements easier to ensure proper functionality with freight collaboration technology. 

6. Never Stop Improving and Evolving, Choosing a Platform That’s Routinely Updated and Upgraded 

Continuous improvement on current systems can make life easier by navigating volatility with technology. Progress and evolution will help keep platforms updated and ready to go when new challenges arise. Better data, analytics, and platforms connecting everything give you better reads on what’s happening and what to do. Auditing and proactively maintaining freight collaboration software will keep even the worst issues from becoming costly. 

Choose the Right Platform by Selecting Cargologik

Searching for the right opportunity to integrate, update, and evolve existing technologies with freight collaboration-friendly software will keep companies competitive in the market. Wading through the volatility can be easier by finding the right partner with the right platform. Provide transparency, differentiate, and constantly improve your systems based on these key operational interactions with your client. And of course, find the best for your business by choosing a platform with a no obligations trial and connecting with Cargologik today

Digital Freight Collaboration for E-Commerce Logistics Units

Digital freight transportation and logistics have long been the backbone of the U.S. economy. Innovative use of modern technology and data-driven logistics allow for more collaboration within partnerships, which can help freight managers secure capacity and meet the ever-changing needs of the e-commerce market. The core of the network is freight transportation providers. Nearly 70% of freight transported in the U.S. annually, an estimated $671 billion, rely on truck transportation, according to TruckingInfo.net. This demand has only grown as e-commerce continues to increase in popularity, showing the need for innovative freight collaboration like never before.

Understanding the Connection Between E-Commerce and Digital Freight Logistics

Real-time visibility remains an integral part of the modern e-commerce supply chain. Especially now, transparency in operations and staying connected with drivers is necessary to secure future growth.  Digital freight logistics focuses on connecting drivers and shippers to ensure capacity is maintained and all units arrive on time. The actual value of digital logistics and improved visibility is that most U.S. trucking companies are not hefty million- or billion-dollar companies. 

According to Supply Chain 24/7, about 97% of carriers in the U.S. operate 20 or fewer trucks. And out of that number, a staggering 90% have six or fewer trucks on the road at any given time. Digital processes for freight tracking, collaboration, and reporting have always been necessary for the modern supply chain. Still, with the continued rise in e-commerce and the need for collaborative partnerships, digital systems and processes are now a requirement. 

Problems With Outdated or Inefficient Collaboration Processes

There are many emerging issues within the supply chain network, thanks to ineffective processes and poor collaboration. Poor communications, lack of visibility, inefficiency and poor adaptability, slow response times, and sub-par customer service are just some of the most prominent and devastating of these. Outdated and cumbersome methods impact the entire transportation process making the whole freight network more vulnerable. Cloud-based logistics organizations and the idea of digital freight management have been on the rise in recent years. However, current events are bringing into sharp contrast the transportation service provider who has not embraced modern technological advancements. 

Logistics providers that depend on antiquated solutions find themselves struggling to keep up with consumer demands and needs. They also often struggle to collaborate and coordinate with third-party suppliers efficiently due to the disconnect in digital processes and platforms. Relying on outdated processes and protocols makes it difficult to deliver units in a timely manner and keep shippers and customers alike satisfied.

Growing With and Adapting to Market Changes With Digital Freight Collaboration and Partnerships

There are several innovative ways collaborative partnerships help freight managers secure the capacity to meet the demands of e-commerce.  Adapting to changes in the market and shifting consumer needs and expectations is a critical part of successful business operations today. Embracing freight collaboration and tech-driven partnerships can help transportation service providers maintain the competitive edge. Everything from digital load platforms, digital freight matching software, built-in mobile communication apps, and automated data collection and analysis dashboards can help shippers stay up-to-date with supply chain technology and innovations. 

Rather than trying to do everything independently, shippers can partner with other shipping providers and network specialists to improve their compatibility and enhance their competitive advantage. Market changes and shifting trends are unavoidable, so adaptability, scalability, and versatility are all critical characteristics that allow shippers to grow and adapt to every high and low fluctuation. Market volatility is unavoidable but its effects can be mitigated with proper planning and collaboration.

Maximize Growth and Salability With E-Commerce Ready Freight Forwarding Systems

Transportation service providers need to plan for the next shift in the market ahead of the coming peak season. They should also continue to expect the momentum around digital freight collaboration to continue as more shippers and carriers integrate digital technology and software trends into their supply chains. Modern technology and innovations improve operations throughout the supply chain, from warehouses to distribution centers, and from docking yards to delivery destinations. 

The entire transportation network will become even more efficient and productive with digital collaborations and automated freight management. So, be sure to find the freight forwarding system and maximize growth potential with e-commerce focused freight management and collaboration systems. Sign up for Cargologik to get started today and upload your first 10 MBLs for automated tracking and sharing with your customer, for free.

Benefits of Freight Collaboration for E-Commerce Companies

As the supply chain launches into the world of technology and application platforms, freight collaboration becomes the star focus of these advancements. 

The supply chain and logistics industries are far too critical to the success of e-commerce – making freight collaboration even more important to the industry according to E-Commerce Nation

Companies may need some time to catch up to the growing need for visibility and renewed interest in one solid platform for everyone to use. E-commerce companies can also benefit from expanding platforms and enhancing collaboration using new technology. 

Adding tech capabilities can help commercial teams regain valuable time responding to redundant tasks and activities that also take away from their own client’s business. An example of this would be gathering shipment details for a quote, where the repetitive back and forth is required for both the shipper and the forwarder to even obtain pricing options. Or a logistics partner on the other side of the world who needs to automatically know about a pending delay first thing in the morning when they wake up. Much time, coordination, and effort are spent gathering basic information over, and over again.

This no longer is the case, and adopting a freight collaboration platform for you and your customers is the first step in improving ecommerce shipping operations.

Logistics Management and Freight Collaboration Are the Backbone of E-Commerce and Require Real-Time Data

Not only are logistics management and freight collaboration the backbone of e-commerce, but they also enhance outdated procedures that create chaos and dysfunction within the supply chain. 

Logistics managers continue to ensure the use of new tech for their teams, and other technology can be seen throughout all walks of the supply chain. Increased use of advanced freight management platforms in conjunction with e-commerce visibility assists carriers and shippers with freight forwarding regulation

This also enables real-time intervention when things go wrong. As the industry continues to expand technology and capacity, freight collaboration must be the focal point for e-commerce. Without it, too many things can and will go wrong, and increasingly so at scale as e-commerce brands boom.

Issues that can Arise from Poor Collaboration and a Lack of Supply Chain Tech

As with any introduction of new technology, poor freight collaboration can make any platform seem useless and overwhelming. And unfortunately, the answer is not to sign up for each of the 10 platforms your forwarders provide and have to remember those passwords, but rather to extend your own solution to them and request that they also post-operational updates to your own system. 

You have to flip the script a little bit to truly make it an effective collaboration.  This makes the application more usable and in line with your existing workflows. After all, the key to proper collaboration lies with its ability to be usable from each level. 

Poor collaboration enables improper communication, bad shipment tracking, delivery delays, and a myriad of other disruptions that harm the supply chain and businesses. These can lead to increased fees, missed capacity, and profit loss. 

The core operations of logistics service providers and the often erratic nature of the world’s supply chain already make it very difficult to operate in. Why deal with the unnecessary worry when there’s already so much to worry about?   Freight forwarding collaboration helps eliminate these worries and keep the supply chain moving in the right direction.  

Improved Access and Utilization of TMS and Software Boost Overall Productivity 

The way to combat the issues created by poor freight collaboration is to integrate suitable systems. Using the proper TMS and other software boosts productivity and profitability, and even more so once standard internal operating procedures are set and effectively communicated to commercial teams.

Managers can streamline the processes within the supply chain by implementing the right software for real-time collaboration. When all team members have visibility and can see the data in real-time, it makes each level of the supply chain even more productive by allowing them the pertinent information when they need access to it. Supply chain management is probably one of the toughest team sports you can play, but it’s a game that can be won.

For many experts, they find the excess waste of time and resources, which makes this even more imperative to the success of e-commerce. This is how logistics teams at ecommerce companies can win, on their own by way of collaboration of partners and also internally by making sure everyone across offices and departments are on the same page.

Collaboration and technology are almost unstoppable when the right systems are put in place, with proper training, and ideally on a platform that optimizes the user experience so that it is intuitive and very easy-to-use. 

Partner With Freight Collaboration System Providers to Unlock the Full Potential for E-Commerce Companies

The best thing e-commerce companies can do is engage and leverage freight collaboration system providers to realize your ecommerce organization’s full potential. For many businesses, combining those platforms keeps that information readily available and readable for each team member. 

Domestic freight forwarders and international freight forwarders can also benefit from the collaboration and consolidation of multiple platforms. Not only will this increase visibility, but it will also boost efficiency within your team by implementing collaborative freight management systems.  Sign up for Cargologik today to get started with no obligation.  

How Freight Collaboration Solutions Can Impact Your Small to Medium Forwarding Business

Collaboration in freight forwarding represents a significant opportunity to reduce costs and help small and mid-sized forwarding businesses grow. Unfortunately, the state of the market remains uncertain and the natural reaction is to retreat and focus only on core business. This is not always the case, especially in uncertain environments such as the ones they are dealing with today.

And often with that uncertainty, there are the players who succeed and those that do not. Small to medium-sized forwarding businesses ought to understand the real challenges they face and why freight forwarding collaborative infrastructure and system is essential to success – both now and into the future.

Challenges Faced in the Small to Medium Forwarding Business

The freight forwarding industry also generally faces more volatility and uncertainty than most forms of shipping and logistics. The biggest challenges affecting forwarders include:

  • The rising costs of freight forwarding. 
  • Bunker fluctuations and surcharges. 
  • Seasonality of freight forwarding. 
  • Fees and service charges are billed after the fact. 
  • Limited container capacity and blank sailings. 
  • Economic shortages and failings.

Unfortunately, these problems are exacerbated when freight forwarders try to handle operations manually and work through bookings with email, text messages, and spreadsheets.  Yes, in today’s age, email is the new form of snail-mail –  and leads to higher costs and fewer bookings. 

However, freight collaboration solutions hold the answer. 

Freight Collaboration Solutions Make Everything Easier

Freight collaboration solutions allow freight forwarders to work from both within a single supply chain and with other freight forwarders to keep costs under control. 

As explained by the Logistics Bureau, collaboration entails “upstream and downstream,” which means that within a single supply chain and “horizontal [collaboration], in which two enterprises with the same logistical role or requirement work together. 

For instance, two manufacturers pool their purchasing to buy more services more cost-efficiently from the same logistics provider. Two freight forwarders might work together to achieve better geographical coverage by combining their two fleets and driver work-forces. Vertical and horizontal collaboration can also be mixed, as in business agreements between multiple shippers and carriers to reduce the overall movement of empty trucks and blanked sailings.”

Tips for Deploying Freight Collaboration Solutions to Save Time and Resources

The best way to deploy freight collaboration solutions lies within an end-to-end, connected platform, that delivers value to both the forwarder and their customers.

Instead of simply working with one or two carriers, see all carriers from a single digital resource that actively seeks out and finds possible new business relationships. This includes new opportunities to secure more shippers, gain visibility into processes, reduce communication clutter, and keep a proactive track of where goods are in transit at any time. 

As explained in a prior post on digital transformation tips, digitized capabilities also have a natural implication for improved accounting, reduced stress in quoting and securing bookings, tracking accessorials to help keep clients’ costs under control, and more. 

In fact, small and medium forwarding businesses ought to take these additional steps now:

  1. Know what your shippers want and need, using analytics to reduce lost opportunities. 
  2. Creating a user website that allows your clients to easily access and review information, pay invoices, and more. 
  3. Connecting with shipper platforms to reduce the need for multiple logins and hassle in quoting rates. 
  4. Using high-value marketing to share information regarding rates and indices seamlessly with your clients and encourage more bookings. 
  5. Simplify the freight forwarding booking process to reduce the time lost by clients. 

Become a Stand-Out Forwarder With the Right Freight Collaboration Solutions’ Partner

Digital transformation is the new kid on the block in the freight forwarding industry. 

As reported by Carlos Nicolas Fernandes via JOC.com, digital freight forwarding uses freight collaboration solutions to “adapt to the new world and resolve the innovator’s dilemma is by spinning off a smaller, separate organization that doesn’t have the burden of legacy systems, people, and processes and is able to put the customer above all else. Perhaps most importantly, they can operate autonomously. This new organization doesn’t need to worry about how their success might frustrate another department — they aren’t bound by juggling a bunch of unwieldy trade-offs. Instead, they report to one master — the market and the customers within it. Once the spin-off has reached critical mass, it can either continue to operate independently or be rolled back into the larger organization and seed a mindset transformation that permeates the parent company.” 

Explore the way a digital collaborative forwarding resource can help by requesting Cargologik Beta-Access online today. 

How an Integrated Freight Collaboration Tool Lowers Risk

Modern supply-chain can avoid unnecessary, exponentially-growing costs by simply improving logistics. Often, the easiest way to improve logistics lies in the use of a freight collaboration tool. Integrated freight collaboration tool benefits range from faster processing of shipments to decreased risk for cargo loss. In fact, studies on the value of an integrated freight collaboration tool have uncovered millions of dollars in potential improvements. 

According to the Logistics Bureau, “sharing costs and bringing prices down through economies of scale, depending on the type of collaboration, can help each company’s bottom line. US food company Sysco offered an example when eyeing joint operations with U.S. Foods a few years ago. Sysco indicated that over three to four years, it expected annual cost savings of at least $600 million from improved logistics, supply chain, and associated efficiencies.” 

Thus, freight forwarders and brokers need to know a few things about risk and how an integrated collaborative infrastructure and platform can make a huge impact – especially as a smaller to medium-sized, independent organization.

What’s the Risk With Disjointed Freight Management?

Take a moment to think about modern logistics management. A company may work with other supply chains horizontally, such as working with logistics service providers. The company may also works vertically to take advantage of freight management services, freight forwarders, freight brokers, and more – explains an article published by the Asian Journal of Shipping & Logistics

Horizontal failures in collaboration may lead to poor sharing of data and failure to collaborate with other like businesses to help keep costs under control. For example, if Johnny Shipper needs help with consolidation before scheduling freight, the consolidation services provider would need to know the information. 

Meanwhile, if Johnny Shipper works with a freight forwarder, the forwarder would also need to work with carriers. These examples of vertical and horizontal communications rely on the accurate, timely sharing of shipment data. Without this key information, quotes may be inaccurate, consolidation may not be possible, and delays will occur.

How an Integrated Freight Collaboration Tool Lowers Risk

An integrated freight collaboration tool allows the supply chain to coordinate deliveries and maintain efficiency. Obviously, several risks lie outside of the control of the freight forwarder – such as overall freight rates. But even in this situation, visibility into all freight rates and the ability to understand rate expectations will help keep total spend under control.

According to Global Trade Magazine, shippers have often turned to improved collaboration as a means to manage global vendors. Document storage and centralization, global visibility, shipping collaboration and consolidation, and consistency form a successful shipping strategy. 

An integrated freight collaboration tool connects the systems of the various supply chain partners, eliminating the risk of inaccurate data and improving efficiency along the way. Instead of scheduling a single shipment or quoting a specific carrier, today’s freight forwarders could leverage advanced technologies to rate a shipment across all modes, validate shipping details, and schedule bookings. 

It’s that simple – more visibility and accuracy lower risk and helps companies make more timely and informed decisions.

Tips for Improving Collaboration in Your Supply Chain

Improving collaboration within the supply chain requires the application of a few tips to maximize its return. These include:

  1. Deploy automated data capture, reducing the risk of manual data entry errors.
  2. Leverage application programming interfaces (APIs) to further automate the freight forwarding quoting process. 
  3. Eliminate the hassle of paperwork by leveraging digital documents where possible and storing them on a centralized platform. 
  4. Improve compliance with regular, automated auditing of documents and processes to identify opportunities for improvement. 
  5. Implement analytics to further understand operations and how to drive more value from operations.
  6. Get all supply chain partners involved, encouraging digital integration between systems and further driving efficiency.

Next Steps for Better Collaboration Are in Your Hands

The demand for collaboration has given way to the sharing economy. While maintaining individuality, companies have turned to the internet and advanced software, including a freight collaboration tool that can leverage APIs, to seamlessly move data and reduce inefficiencies, reports INFORMS

As the global supply chain grows more complex, stakeholder collaboration will become an increasingly important step in the process. And since complexity increases risk, a proven resource to improve collaboration through technology will become paramount to success. 

Find out more about how your company can lower risk and improve collaboration by visiting CargoLogik online today. 

Digital Freight Communications Management: Tips for Success

Digital freight communications management refers to the processes and channels in place to reduce the time spent managing the freight process when contacting shippers, carriers, or other logistics service providers and partners. 

Email is sufficient for communications for certain business functions, but email communications to manage freight gets tiresome when you get to the 27th email in one thread. It also doesn’t help to open your inbox and see 100+ new unread emails every day to catch up on.  Sadly, this dominating medium is an immense time and overhead killer. Even with push notifications on, email is still largely a manual process, and regularly results in lost time for freight forwarders and a clunky, poor customer experience for the shipper they work with. Dealing with emails is often a losing proposition in most businesses.

Compounding this communication challenge for the forwarder are other communication channels. There are endless phone calls, messages on platforms such as WhatsApp, Telegram, iMessage/SMS, Slack, Messenger, and in some cases,  even fax (yes people still fax!).  

In 2020, these disjointed communications have become the norm in the management of freight to finalize a shipment from dock to dock.  Maintaining the status quo is no longer sustainable for the independent forwarder and better options need to be sought. Freight forwarders need to understand why before taking necessary steps to improve their operations and business overall.

What Freight Forwarders Get Wrong About Freight Communications

Freight forwarders have endured many changes in the global supply chain. E-commerce, omnichannel supply chains, the blending of channels, the blending of guest experiences, and other factors all push freight forwarders to move freight faster, manage bookings, and fulfill their duties more cost-effectively. These demands emphasize the need for a strong digital freight communications management strategy – which is far too uncommon.

But still, forwarders often fall victim to the perception that traditional approaches to communication, such as email, phone calls, or fax are the only way to handle the complexity of freight forwarding. As explained by Supply Chain Dive:

“The freight forwarding industry has long been aware of potential disruption…however it’s a more complex industry than travel agencies, a commonly cited example of a field that successfully transitioned to digitization.

A consumer can book a flight from New York to Paris, but the only vendor involved is the airline. With freight forwarding, a company books a shipment from New York to Paris, but there are more parties involved, like a truck picking up the goods, ship or plane transport, customs declarations or duties, and delivery to the destination. “The whole process can be extremely complicated,” Ting said. With multiple vendors, it’s more difficult to automate the process in one software solution, plus each country has its own regulations.”

Digital Freight Communications Offer Big Benefits

Digital freight communications management is the new standard for freight forwarding efficiency and success and often are one of the key areas where changes can have an immediate impact. However, it is important to note digital freight communications management is not a simple email process-based task. Instead, true digital freight communications management and strategy means using digital technology to automate as much of the communications process as possible. As reported by BCG.com:

“Automating manual processes, [including communications] now could reduce certain back-office and operations costs by up to 40% while digitizing significant parts of the sales process could reduce related direct costs even more. And as the new business models gain traction over the long term, digital capabilities will open up tremendous opportunities to win in the marketplace.”

Key benefits of digital freight communications include:

  • Improved customer service. 
  • Less time handling manual requests.
  • Quoting all carriers and modes to secure better rates. 
  • Automated invoicing to reduce administrative costs. 
  • Increased accuracy and response time of quoting/booking.

Tips for Successful Digital Freight Communications

For freight forwarders that wish to improve digital freight communications, they should follow these tips for success:

  1. Require all staff to use digital communications tools, especially the use of an integrated freight communications platform as part of a freight forwarding management software platform, like Cargologik. 
  2. Integrate your freight forwarding management platform with carrier platforms. 
  3. Use APIs to automate quoting processes. 
  4. Advise clients to request freight forwarding quotes through your digital platform. 
  5. Manage by exception, contacting clients directly within the platform. When communications features, such as a “delivery update comment” on a specific shipment, is provided in your freight forwarding platform, it allows you to communicate around the shipment on which the exception occurred and better automate the typical back and forth communication and channels required to convey the critical information. This reduces the need and time to hunt down the other part, match a shipment reference number, or commit a costly error on which specific shipment the exception occurred. 
  6. Automate the booking process after rating, putting clients in control. 
  7. Stay forward-thinking, including considering the use of advanced technologies. When forwarders are using a digital freight forwarding platform to manage their customers and associated shipments, especially SaaS-based platforms, advanced technologies like blockchain, artificial intelligence, machine learning, OCR, and the like are easier to embed as they arise in the future.

Empower Your Team With Digital Collaboration and Communication Resources

Digital freight communications resources and a robust strategy empower freight forwarders with data-driven interactions, promote engagement between forwarder and clients, and can integrate with other supply chain systems. The result is the same – freight forwarders realize the benefits of centralized supply chain execution and management, as well as direct and indirect cost savings. Visit CargoLogik online to join the private beta queue of innovative freight forwarding software now.

How an Integrated Freight Communications Platform Nets Cost and Time-Saving Benefits for Freight Forwarders

Freight forwarders face uncertainty in the digital age. Those that evolve process management and leverage automation can reap real rewards in the form of cost and time-saving benefits. As explained by BCG.com, “automating manual processes now could reduce certain back-office and operations costs by up to 40%, while digitizing significant parts of the sales process could reduce related direct costs even more. 

As digital-first business models gain traction over the long term, digital capabilities will unlock tremendous opportunities (for freight forwarders) to win in the marketplace.” The rationale is simple; an integrated freight communications platform within a freight forwarding management platform will lower risk and streamline management of freight forwarding. 

In this article, we will explain the benefits of integrated freight communications for freight forwarders who want to stay competitive as well as show how the use of a freight communications platform translates into better customer service and relationships. 

What Limits Exist in Traditional, Siloed Freight Forwarding Management Styles?

Traditional freight forwarding communication processes are disjointed. A shipper or representative would contact the freight forwarder. The freight forwarder would review available capacity and current freight rates. The freight forwarder would then relay the information via phone, and after several back and forths to get to the ultimate freight costs, the freight forwarder may have the chance to tender and schedule the freight on behalf of the shipper. 

Unfortunately, this complex process did not get much better with the advent of email. Shippers are still on “hold,” waiting for forwarders to respond, and in today’s world, delays in shipping mean lost customers for both the shipper and the forwarder. Furthermore, the time and process costs incurred by the forwarder to get a quote with more traditional processes result in higher charges to shippers and logistics service providers.

CargoLogik Freight Forwarding Management Platform streamlines freight communications so freight forwarders are proactive with their customers & time efficient.

Digital Freight Forwarding Solves the Challenges of Traditional and Manual Freight Forwarding

Digital solutions for freight forwarders via a management platform leverage APIs and cloud-based technology, such as software-as-a-service (SaaS) platforms, to transform freight forwarding quotes and the communication of rates, ETAs, and status updates, into a rapid, seamless, and automated process. The flexibility offered due to the ease of use in a digital freight forwarding platform, as explained by Carter Logistics, allows freight forwarders to stay competitive and operate in real-time. 

As freight forwarders utilize a digital freight forwarding management tool and leverage features within them, such as an integrated freight communications platform with shippers and logistics service providers, the entire freight forwarding process takes less time reducing overhead for freight forwarders. In turn, those overhead savings translate into savings for the freight forwarders’ customers, which allows the freight forwarder to win more business and increase overall profitability longterm.  

What Are the Direct and Indirect Benefits of Digital Freight Communications?

The benefits of an integrated freight communications platform within the management platform reveal a growing demand for faster and more accurate quoting in the industry. Timeliness of quotes is critical to securing available capacity and ensuring billed services reflect quoted freight services. Moreover, a digital freight communications platform eliminates the waste in terms of labor hours and resource allocation in quoting and tendering freight which increases in the traditional back and forth we outlined previously. Those benefits have an additional effect on planning, resulting in increased efficiency in space utilization, better route management, and even lower emissions. 

The indirect cost and time benefits stem from the boost in resource capacity as the platform replaces the need to throw more labor at a process, but utilize smart technology to do less with more. Since workers do not spend their time contacting carriers and reviewing rates, they can focus more on providing service to shippers and solving unique customer service requests. As a result, freight forwarders see increased service levels without an uptick in costs to service their customer base. The integration between freight forwarding platforms and carrier systems also allows companies to avoid the pitfalls of working independently, reducing risk to the business and enabling competition, notes the Journal of Commerce

Additionally, societies move closer to 5G service infrastructures, the speed of communications will also increase. Thus, freight forwarders will see rate quoting that operates in an even closer range to real-time rates. More importantly, freight forwarders providing real-time freight quotes using an integrated freight communications platform allows for a thorough rating in all available modes, quickly. Faster and complete communication of information between the forwarder and the shipper allows for strategic freight forwarding decisions and ensure each shipment arrives on time, at the right price, and without added risk. 

Invest in an Integrated Freight Communications Platform to Stay Competitive

No process justifies the continued use of outdated, standard freight quoting processes. Through an API and integrated platform, the small to a medium-sized freight forwarder will finally realize the benefits of real-time freight quoting and tendering. Of course, it all depends on the quality of data and user-friendliness. Fortunately, SaaS-based platforms function without the hassle of traditional, on-premise solutions and provide robust data to users. Cargologik has built a freight forwarding platform, with an integrated freight communications platform. This feature empowers freight forwarders to leverage automated freight forwarding processes at a fraction of the cost to differentiate, retain and build new customers and compete in any market.