The best freight management solution should integrate perfectly into an organisation's current IT infrastructure, providing simple options for interfacing with external business partners such as the organisation's forwarders.
On the other hand, some organisations might not be looking for a comprehensive transport and freight management system. Software that has a modular system architecture, which can enable them to precisely select the functionalities that they need, with a choice of expanding later as business grows, may be an option for them.
No one-size-fits-all solution
In light of the increased external risks and internal challenges selecting the right fit, there is only one way to manage contracts effectively so that there can be transparency when it comes to modes and routes options: deploy specialised freight management software solutions.
The right solution can manage complex tariff structures such as value-added services and multimodal rate schedules from different service providers. Organisations will also be able to calculate and compare freight costs for any scenario or purpose, regardless of whether to run quick calculations to generate sales data, allocating billing costs for customers or preparing for price negotiations with transport partners.
Organisations could start with basic electronic carrier contract management to support forwarder negotiation and selection processes which could later be supplemented with modules for electronic freight invoice audit and forwarder credit note procedures. This can streamline the administrative aspect of freight cost management.
Organisations should also consider if the freight management solution's delivery options suits its current IT environment and long-term strategy. These include on-site system installation, on-demand web service, ERP plug-in, or hosted solution in managed data centre.
As transport costs continue to rise and there is pressure to cut costs, freight cost management offers greater optimisation potential to support supply chain managers' targets. Today's solutions offer both process optimisation and spending reductions.
The right freight management solution for organisations depends on its needs so there is no one-size fits all.
Supply chain managers should start speaking to freight solution providers with the right portfolio, experience and consultancy so they can explore their options on the market and achieve their logistics business goals.
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