Note: Today’s post is part of our new “Editor’s Pick” series where we highlight recent posts published by our sponsors that provide practical knowledge and advice on timely and important supply chain and logistics topics. Today’s post is by Alan Dunkerley, VP Product Management, Logistics Flow Control at Descartes, where he outlines the steps required to develop a plan and realize cost savings for inbound shipments.
In speaking with customers over the last few months, we have seen a significant increase in transportation teams taking more control of their inbound freight. Historically, most of the return on investment (ROI) for transportation management systems (TMS) was focused on outbound transportation by optimizing across less than truckload (LTL)/truckload (TL) and cutting freight costs while creating increased visibility and customer service. Now, with the advent of cloud-based transportation management systems that support a wider range of modes (e.g. parcel, fleet, air and ocean) and better supplier connectivity, the opportunity to expand the use of TMS to reduce the cost of inbound shipments is greater than ever.
Whether a manufacturer, retailer or distributor is planning transportation with spreadsheets, or have automated outbound with a legacy TMS, it is a good time to take a step back and review the big picture. The following are examples that illustrate how incorporating inbound freight as part of the transportation management process can reduce overall freight costs, streamline operations, and increase customer satisfaction.