What is Freight Management?
As a business owner, you would not agree to make a purchase that could impact your profitability without first understanding the cost associated with that purchase. Likewise, it is important to know and understand the true freight cost of shipping products and goods. Awareness of shipping procedures and rates can help prevent wasteful spending.
However, small businesses often can not afford to hire a logistics or supply line manager. So what can they do to stay competitive and informed about freight management? Enlisting the usage of a direct freight or freight matching service is both an effective way to control freight cost and manage inventory. Freight management involves controlling cost, maintaining accurate records, and sustaining warehouse inventory levels.
The actual cost of shipping cargo is much more involved than just the actual shipping cost associated with the transportation company. The total freight cost also includes the cost of storing inventory, packaging material, salaries of shipping clerks, computer system to track and monitor shipments, actual freight rates, and cost associated with delayed shipments. Each of these areas must be watched and monitored to ensure careless spending habits do not develop. Learning to package merchandise with the least dimensional space can be accomplished so that shipping costs are kept down.
Another very effective way to keep freight cost down is to employ the help of a freight management company or website. There are organizations that can help match a clients shipping needs to shipping companies looking for loads. This is a great way to approach freight management because not only does this type of service keep cost lower by promoting competition, but also because they often include the usage of an information database. Being able to track trends, inventory levels, and previous time and cost to ship cargo can assist companies in making future shipping decisions.
Keeping accurate shipping records is key to a smooth running supply chain. Understanding inventory trends can help control cost by insuring that a company is not stuck with a lot of overstock. Storing inventory is one of the most costly expenses in the shipping process. In addition, being able to track a shipment makes the trucking company more accountable to deliver their loads on time. Late shipments can affect customer satisfaction levels and thereby affect repeat customer sales. If a business wishes to grow and be financially successful they must have high customer retention levels.
Finally, in order to become profitable, a company should closely manage inventory levels of their own stock and the stock of their retailers and wholesalers. If a retailer can not get the products that they need from a business because inventory levels have dropped too low, then they will find another supplier for that product. However, on the contrary, if a manufacturer has overstock then the supply does not meet the demands and the products cost goes up. It is a delicate line to walk to controlling inventory to aid in cost-effective freight management.
Without controlling freight rates and cost and maintaining proper management guidelines and regulations, then a company's profitability will suffer. Whether freight management is done through a logistics professional or through a third party administer, it demands proper attention.