Transport management is one of the most crucial components in a logistics business. Your business won’t be able to operate without your transportation. Managing transportation is not just about performing routine maintenance, but it also involves various other aspects such as the back office, financial analysis, and the use of software. To help optimize your transport management, check out these five practical tips!
1. Evaluate Your Business Performance
First of all, you need to evaluate your transport management to find out the aspects that need improvement. Evaluate the performance of your couriers, the condition of your vehicles, the delivery routes, the use of fuel, and so on.
A complete evaluation will make it easier for you to optimize efficiency. Find out what factors contribute to high expenses. Are they caused by wrong shipping routes? Does your fuel consumption cost you the most? Or is the excess expenditure caused by all the compensation costs incurred due to courier negligence?
Analyze the shipping method that you use, figure out whether the method is truly effective or not. Find out what your customers mostly complain about. In order to optimize your services, consider conducting a customer satisfaction survey regularly.
2. Add Value to Your Services
You must notice that nowadays almost all logistics businesses are competing to improve their services to become the customer’s first choice. You should take the time to find out what value you can add to your services.
Instead of providing low shipping costs, you can provide other benefits such as private service, priority freight, multiple transportation types or more options of shipping durations. By having added-value, it will be reasonable for you to increase your shipping costs.
3. Build a Good Collaboration Between the Front & Back Offices
Your couriers are responsible for delivering orders to the final destinations. However, it is the back office that is in charge of providing the complete information to the couriers and helping resolve any delivery issues. Thus, both the front and back offices must be able to work hand in hand.
To build a great collaboration among your sales, marketing, customer service, logistics and shipping teams, consider having a centralized system that allows all the departments to share and make use of information. ERP software provides this convenience.
ERP software makes it easy for the sales team to get complete information about clients without having to meet the marketing team in person. The logistics team can find out the delivery request without having to directly talk to the sales team. Your couriers can also directly access information related to shipping through the system. ERP software also allows the back office to track the whereabouts of the couriers so that various issues that lead to delays can be identified and solutions can be provided early.
4. Use an Automated Transport Management System
Managing transportation in a logistics business can be complicated, especially if you still rely on manual methods. They make it impossible to track each driver or ensure the timeliness and safety of each shipment. An automated transport management system allows you to manage and monitor all the processes involved from one place.
The transport management system allows you and the back office to easily track the whereabouts of the drivers, assign couriers, find out which vehicles are operating and which ones are unused, monitor fuel costs spent on each vehicle, and view travel history. All those processes can be done at the same time through a single system. You can also generate real-time analytic reports related to the income generated from the use of your transportation
5. Perform Routine Checks
Transport management is not complete without maintenance. Routine checks are crucial, because your business relies on each of your transportation. If your vehicles are damaged, shipments can’t be processes.
Periodic maintenance can prevent damage to your transportation. It can also extend its life span. Performing routine checks also helps reduce costs, because repairing damaged vehicles or buying new ones is more expensive than maintaining your existing vehicles.
Your transportation is a very valuable asset, so it is critical to carry out inspections and maintenance consistently. To facilitate these activities, consider using an automated asset management system. With this system, you will be able to schedule maintenance, perform routine checks, assign inspectors, and view the logs of your transportation conditions more easily.