Advanced Retail Delivery Management

Our Advanced Retail Delivery Management module is designed to manage and minimize customer chargebacks for missing delivery windows.

Advanced Retail Delivery Management

Provides visibility of chargebacks from retail customers

  1. By type of chargeback
  2. Chargeback location
  3. Transportation provider

Provides advanced logging capability

  1. Tracklog on LTL
  2. Tracking on truckload shipments*
  3. Appointment time v actual arrival time
  4. Estimated amount of chargeback

Provides advance warning before routing shipments

  1. On locations have user set excessive chargeback history
  2. Transportation providers that have excessive chargeback history

Provides advance warning when set appointment does not meet delivery requirement

  1. Can alert customer service that delivery appointment outside requirements

Chargeback reconciliation

  1. Estimated chargeback v actual chargeback
  2. Chargeback reason if coded
  3. Chargebacks can be imported or manually entered

Analytics and reporting

  1. Chargeback geographic heat map
  2. Filterable by customer or transportation provider
  3. Estimated v actual chargebacks
  4. Visual or report outputs

When did Walmart OTIF Compliance Begin?

Walmart suppliers have followed delivery compliance guidelines for many years. At first, the system used was called Must Arrive By Date. As online shopping grew, the company sought ways to improve lead times.

The result was the introduction of On Time In Full standards in 2017. OTIF guidelines emphasize narrow delivery windows and full orders.

What are the 2019 Walmart OTIF Compliance Changes?

Trucks delivering to a retail distribution center

In February 2019, Walmart announced changes to its supplier delivery targets. The updated delivery goals are expected to begin in May 2019.

In the past, OTIF compliance was measured as a single metric. Now, there will be two different measurements. On-time deliveries will be one metric. In-full shipments will be the second.

“The separate metrics will help suppliers increase their focus on delivering in-full, which we see as a key to continued improvement with in-stocks,” Walmart spokesperson Michelle Malashock told Supply Chain Dive.

On-Time Factors

To meet Walmart’s on-time requirement, shipments must arrive within a delivery window. The delivery window will vary from shipper to shipper. Generally, a delivery window will be one or two days. Early or late deliveries will result in penalties against the supplier’s scorecard.

In-Full Factors

Shipments to Walmart’s distribution centers should be 100% in-full. This means they will not be under- or overfilled. As with on-time factors, failure to make in-full delivery can have negative consequences.

What OTIF Targets will Shippers Need to Meet?

The changes in May will see more pressure put on “in-full” deliveries. This change is meant to reduce the amount of surplus inventory Walmart keeps in back rooms and distribution centers.

2019 In-Full Target Goals

  • Food Consumables: 97.5 percent
  • General Merchandise: 95 percent

In terms of delivery, “on-time” performance will also be boosted. The biggest change will fall on full load shippers. The previous goal of 85 percent is increasing to 87 percent.

2019 On-Time Target Goals

  • Prepaid Full Truckload: 87 percent
  • Prepaid Less-Than-Truckload: 70 percent
  • Collect Shipments: 95 percent
TMS

Advanced Shipment Tracking

Advanced Shipment Tracking and Notification

ShippersEdge is a flexible, affordable and feature rich TMS SaaS platform designed with ease of use and your customer’s satisfaction in mind.

Cases in point:

The challenge:

A textbook publisher delivers 90% of their textbooks during the summer to disorganized [it is summer break] individual schools. Almost all of these shipments are LTL. The person responsible at the school for arranging the receiving is usually a principal or a vice principle. The challenge was making sure someone was available to receive the shipment when the truck arrived.

Solution:

Set up SMS text messaging to the receiving party when:

  1. The shipment is shipped complete with link to the carrier’s website
  2. Notify the receiving party when the shipment is out for deliver
  3. Immediately notify the publisher if shipment goes back to the carrier’s dock
  4. Provide carrier terminal contact information to receiver and publisher
  5. Capture redelivery costs to be billed to receiver

The challenge:

A Fortune 50 manufacturer of commercial grade printers and copiers needed to track final mile delivery of their machines so a service tech could meet the truck and securely off load the machine and install it.

Solution:

Provide a mobile friendly app to see stop level detail on delivery trucks through connection with onboard technology. App is permission based so the user (the service tech) only see their deliveries.  

The challenge:

One of the largest architectural steel fabricators in the United States deliveries thousands of truckloads of steel to numerous simultaneous jobsites throughout the country. There were three challenges here:

  1. Keep trucks on time to minimize idle crane back charges
  2. Monitor jobsite dwell time to minimize detention
  3. Keep track of every cost and provide visibility by job 

Solution:

Connected to onboard technology in the truck with geo fencing and en-route delay alerting. Configured our jobs manager to track all transportation costs including various accessorial charges by job. Provided project manager view of each job to the project manager. Output detail payable information including vendor code, GL code job code and “chargeable” accessorial charges. 

Give us your challenges, we’ll provide solutions.

Is an off the shelf TMS right for me?

Transportation management systems (like ShippersEdge TMS) are a common-sense investment for many companies. A fully features and customizable Enterprise Level ShippersEdge TMS is a considerable investment for most shippers and there are now options for entry level systems that can give you the basics on a budget, but are they right for your company. Here are things to know before investing in any TMS and a more advanced system like ShippersEdge TMS.

Is an off the shelf system enough for me?

An off the shelf TMS is better than nothing. A TMS of any sort is a powerful piece of software. Buying a budget system with limited customization may end up costing you more than having something tailored specifically for your needs.

ShippersEdge also offers a basic economy version of its software that is easily upgradable

ShippersEdge Professional Edition

Here are questions to ask: 

What are your goals regarding adding an advanced TMS like ShippersEdge?

  • What cost are you trying to manage?
    • Soft (people) costs
    • Hard dollar transportation spend
    • Freight loss and damage claims
    • Customer late delivery penalties
    • Compliance issues
  • Are you trying to source lowest cost capacity?
    • Spot market or contract
    • Less-than-Truckload LTL
    • Transit time importance
    • Lowest cost provider
    • Exception visibility
  • Are your rates competitive?
    • Do you have lane intelligence
    • Price (cost) change visibility
    • Do certain customers or vendors cause higher than normal freight costs
  • Is too much time being spent on managing compliance?
    • Insurance compliance and monitoring
    • Contract expiration and compliance
    • Freight bill auditing
  • Do you need corporate visibility on decision-making?
    • Are freight provider selections being monitored 
    • Are certain constituents preventing use of low cost provider
    • Can you quantify the dollar value of not using the low cost provider and the reasons for not using them
    • Are low cost providers actually accepting tenders

What can a more advanced TMS like ShippersEdge TMS do that an off the shelf budget TMS cannot?

ShippersEdge TMS is a software tool that assists in the planning, execution and analysis of logistics. As a more advanced ShippersEdge TMS can automate functions and decisions normally done by people and point out exceptions needing further management.

  • Do you have a must deliver by date on your sales order?
    • ShippersEdge TMS points out published transit times and compare requirements
    • If published transit time and required delivery date mismatch
    • Will your TMS point the above out as an exception
    • Can your TMS acquire advanced shipment tracking information
  • Is your freight damage sensitive
    • Does your TMS monitor damage
    • Can your TMS provide damage KPI information
    • Can your TMS be set to avoid high damage carriers
    • Can your TMS use business rules when determining carrier selection
  • What other special requirements do you shipments have
    • Are there special arrangements needed for delivery
    • Could those processes by automated or assisted
    • Do you need advanced tracking
    • Do you need dwell (delay/detention) time information on deliveries
  • How do you monitor and audit spot quotes?
    • Do you have a centralized methodology of getting spot quotes
    • Can you audit spot quote freight invoices automatically
    • Do you have a special place to retain all shipment notes
    • Can you message a carrier within your TMS for load specific messaging visibility
    • Can you monitor tender acceptance on spot quotes 
  • Do you need dock management?
    • Do you have a software enable dock scheduling tool
    • Can your system allow (if desired) carriers to set their own appointments
    • Do you need carrier on time arrival KPI metrics
    • Can you measure dock/shipment labor productivity
    • Can your carriers schedule appointments through a carrier portal
  • Do you need a carrier portal for truckload/volume LTL shipments?
    • Would you like to have automated auditing on sport quotes
    • Do you need provider uploaded invoices and other documents
    • Do you need in shipment in portal messaging
    • In portal bidding, tendering acceptance and tracking
    • Can your carriers schedule appointments through a carrier portal
  • Do you need EDI invoicing?
    • Most LTL carriers and larger truckload carriers have EDI
    • Will you want advanced freight charge auditing of EDI invoices
    • Can you adjust tolerance levels of freight cost exception management
    • Do you want to go paperless
    • Are other documents (such as signed bills of lading) need to be stored
  • Do you need advanced and automated reporting and notification?
    • Do your customers require advance shipment notices (ASN)
    • Would automating the ASN reporting save time
    • Would non ASN customers want notification a shipment has been shipped
    • Would an email with a tracking link be helpful for customer satisfaction
    • Does your shipping manager need a tomorrow’s activity report
    • Do purchasing managers need enroute shipment reports or visibility
    • What weekly/monthly reports are now manually compiled

How much does ShippersEdge TMS Cost?

Depends on what you want it to do. There are free TMS systems out there but when the service is free, you are the product. The answer lies in the number of shipments managed, advanced functionality requested and any customization. The range is about $2.00 per shipment on small installations to less than $0.50 per shipment on very large installations. 

The budget should be set on your expectations of savings. Those savings are 

  • What savings should I expect?
    • Hard dollar savings against a well-run operation 1%-5%
    • Soft dollar savings typically exceed hard dollar savings
    • Freeing up management time can lead to additional hard dollar savings
    • Having visibility, both historic and real-time improves decision making
    • Improving constituent satisfaction is priceless
    • Prevention of small problems becoming big problems; incalculable

What Systems can ShippersEdge TMS integrate with?

As a cloud-based ShippersEdge TMS can connect systems from providers – carriers, brokers, warehouse operators, vendors and receivers in one location. Custom and stock dashboards keep you informed of exceptions and other data. 

Can ShippersEdge TMS integrate with a WMS?

ShippersEdge TMS can be integrated with your warehouse management system to manage inbound and and outbound inventory flow. If your warehouses are being supplied by disparate vendors, ShippersEdge TMS can alert shipment delays thus preventing shortage of product. 

Can ShippersEdge TMS be customized?

Entry level, off-the-shelf systems come with limited functionality and customization is probably not be possible. An advanced TMS like ShippersEdge TMS offers near unlimited customization and can be further customized as a need is seen. An advanced ShippersEdge TMS is also modular so you don’t pay for functionality you don’t need. 

A commitment to keeping your ShippersEdge TMS up-to-date

Since ShippersEdge TMS is cloud based, enhancements to our technology are constantly being rolled out. When ShippersEdge TMS was first available on the web in 2002, the database contained 32 million rate pairs. Today, most of that is replaced by API technology but we still support rate tables for the providers that have not evolved their technology and we support non-standard rating, like unit prices or pallet rates. 

As new technologies come on the market ShippersEdge TMS is ready to integrate and communicate with them. 

What other advanced features does ShippersEdge TMS have?

Safety monitoring, carrier score-carding, ELD tracking, vendor compliance monitoring, business rule effectuation of complex or simple routine execution. Probably almost anything you want but can’t get out of your ERP. Vendor Portals, Customer Portals, Yard Management, Carrier Portals, Optimization Basic and Advanced, ASN connectivity

Strategy Leads Tactics

Ready, Fire, Aim is not a good strategy

In logistics management as in all things having a strategy leads to tactics. Getting cheapest freight rate is a tactic, it may be part of a strategy but if it leads to freight claims, customer dissatisfaction with delivery expectation or a failure in your supply chain that shuts down a line, it wasn’t really a great strategy.

Having a goal leads to strategy

How does one go about creating a strategy? Goals is first and foremost. Goals in and of themselves are strategies of a sort. A plan to attain those goals is developed through analytics and the harnessing of data. Acquiring data is paramount to developing strategies to achieve goals.

This is where a TMS helps dramatically, first in acquiring, reporting and analyzing data. If the goals are to smooth out bumps in the supply chain, having the data to know specifically and empirically where the bumps are, who are the players (vendor/transportation provider/purchasing agent) you get a statistical analysis that will show a developing pattern. 

Likewise, in deliveries to customers, patterns emerge, typically with the transportation provider but sometimes they are confined to a specific region or locality of a transportation providers. A couple of years ago a major transportation provider had a hub in Denver that service any western states. They also sustained an acute reduction in available labor due to newly legalized recreational marijuana. Many of our client suspended them until things settled down. 

Patterns emerge

Over a given period of time, patterns emerge and then tactics can be deployed to mitigate the problem. You may want better visibility on your retail deliveries to avoid penalties. Maybe the problem is lack of visibility on incoming shipments leading to uncertain labor planning. Vendor compliance and vendor timeliness is also important and can be managed, if seen and historically evaluated. 

Giant data warehouse

A solid Transportation Management System is a giant data warehouse, one you don’t have to ask IT for access to. Custom dashboards, alerts, reports should be easy. ShippersEdge TMS is affordable high technology that assists you in your execution of strategies and gives you the analytical tools to identify opportunities and execute the tactical moves that follow. 

ShippersEdge adds International to Its Product Offerings

Now you can manage your international shipping through ShippersEdge.

Use our system to create all international documents

Communicate with your providers via EDI

Store all documents within ShippersEdge

Conveniently transmit documents to your trading partners

Supplier portal supports International Shipping

Provide constituents with easy to find tracking information

Alerting of delays or timely arrivals may be automated

Compare rates from your providers

Request rate quotes from your providers

All rate quoting information is captured within ShippersEdge

Display analytics by provider, lane or vendor/receiver

ShippersEdge can even communicate with customs in many countries 

3PL Logistics Management From ShippersEdge

ShippersEdge has completed our 3PL management version of our award winning TMS. 

Features include:

Fixed or variable markup

Integration with any accounting system

Customer Vendor Portal for managing incoming freight

Consolidations one customer or many

Consolidation cost allocation by business rules or manual override

Invoicing (batch or individual) 

EDI invoicing or file transfer

Settlement Module including proper paperwork check

Czar-Lite Support

Non-standard rating (pallet, lineal or cubic feet or rate tables)

Cost change (while enroute) visibility

Accept carrier EDI 

Transmit Carrier EDI

LTL carrier API integration

Freight bill auditing

Exception management and notification

Truckload Tracking cell phone or direct connection

Geofencing

LTL tracking 

Scalability for multiple accounts

Highly affordable monthly costs

Ability to customize for you or your clients

Client/Customer Portal

Carrier Portal with or without bid boards

Electronic load tendering through system email or portal

Service Confirmations through portal or system email

Carriers can upload their freight invoices and documents through the portal or via system email

Instant messaging through portal retained in shipment record

Lane histories

Shipment history logging

Ability to import orders or integrate with your client’s ERP

These are the basic features. We can customize for you. 

Carrier Portals

Custom Carrier Portals

ShippersEdge has off the shelf and customizable carrier portals. Typically, large volume truckload shippers use a carrier portal to have their carriers update status on the loads and to accept or reject shipment tender requests.

Some shippers like to use portals as load boards with fixed pricing or as bid boards. Whether you set the expected price or you’re requesting a price from a provider, a carrier portal is an excellent way to provide your carrier visibility into your available or upcoming shipments. Rates can also be extracted from established rate agreements with your providers.

Messaging that remains a permanent record in the shipment can also be accomplished through the portal and a flag can be set to denote a new message to ensure it is seen. In some cases, you may want to send an email to your provider notifying them of new messages or changes to a load.

When it comes to a portal, ShippersEdge can advise you of state of the art best practices and if appropriate, incorporate those practices along with your current practices if desired. Your portal will be done your way. Gone will be spreadsheets, hunting through emails and sticky notes to find particulars on a shipment.

Make your carrier portal the way you want it. Contact ShippersEdge timothy.taylor@shippersedge.com call 952-777-4421 or visit us on the web at www.shipperesedgetms.com

A TMS with a Built-in App for Managing Intermediate Bulk Containers

A TMS with a Built-in App for Managing Intermediate Bulk Containers

ShippersEdge an award-winning transportation management system is pleased to announce its available app to help you grade and count your returned IBC equipment. You would use ShippersEdge TMS to route and track your intermediate bulk container shipping both inbound and outbound. As the IBC equipment is returned to your facility a special tab will show you which containers need to be inventoried and graded.

The app is specifically designed to be operated from an iPad (or another tablet) to be graded. You can also activate the camera if wanted. You can add inventory units and finally export this data to your billing system or ERP.

Below is an example or a form we did for an IBC exchange company. It can be easily modified to fit your needs exactly.

Get your workflow managed and easier than ever to get the date you need sent to the right application. The add on app is only $250.00 per month so its highly affordable. ShippersEdge TMS base entry pricing is just under $500.00 per month and integrations are reasonably priced as is the setup fees.

Contact ShippersEdge at timothy.taylor@shippersedge.com or 952-777-4421 or visit us on the web at www.shippersedgetms.com

Shippers use technology to mitigate chargebacks

Jeff Bezos doesn’t need more money

A whole host of big box retailers, from Walmart to Walgreens, CVS to Amazon are assessing penalties for late deliveries. It sounds to me like Jeff Bezos doesn’t need more money so let’s help him out. Shippers need to use technology to mitigate these chargebacks. Since MAP 21, coercing drivers even through threats to withhold future business is not an answer at all. The ELD capacity tightening is only making things worse. There are a lot of whys in that but let’s start with an answer first.

Plan your shipping

Plan your shipping around expected transit times. We’ll go into this further but LTL carriers publish transit times and technology can help you monitor the accuracies of those times. Truckload transit times have to be geared toward driver hours, weather and congestion. There are now inexpensive ways to track truckload transit and do historical analysis in specific lanes.

This is all presuming you can schedule production to a ship date generated by technology. Let’s say we have an LTL shipment, where stated transit time is 4 days (business days) and data shows 85% on time deliveries. The rate is $560.00. The best on time percentage is 98% but the rate is $20.00 more. Amazon charges 3% of the cost of goods (invoice value). On a $8,000 order saving $20.00 could cost you $240.00.

The math

Assuming you ship monthly to all 122 Amazon Fulfillment centers in the US:
 

Total Shipments

15% Late Order Value 3% Chargeback Total of all charge backs
1464 220 $18,000  $540.00  $118,584.00
Total Shipments 2% Late Order Value 3% Chargeback Total of all charge backs
1464 29 $18,000  $540.00  $15,811.20
Total Shipments Additional Freight Charges @ $20.00 each Savings with on time carrier
1464  $29,280.00  $73,492.80
However, Amazon only assesses the outside delivery window charge if your trailing four week average is below 90% so in effect you could save the entire $118,584.00 by using a more reliable carrier.

 

So how do you get reliability percentages easily

So how do you get reliability percentages easily and automatically? ShippersEdge TMS will give them to you and they can be viewed manually or incorporated into business rules f and used with automated tendering.

All the major retailing chains have added late delivery chargebacks to their arsenal. Just having an easy way to create delivery reports that show the delivery date vs. the delivery window requested can aid in dispute resolution. Getting carrier information into your ASNs is another thing a TMS can assist you with. By knowing transit times and reliability metrics, a TMS can tell you when to ship, with whom to ship and give you the data to make informed objective decisions.

A TMS can also record weather related delays, track full truckloads and create alerts for situations where an appointment can’t be met. Some missed appointment charges can run $350.00. Integrating with cell phone tracking is made for a TMS to point out problems before they become bottom line events.

Contact ShippersEdge at 952-777-4421 or visit us on the web at www.shippersedgetms.com

 

 

 

Using Ancient Technology to Manage Freight Is No Way to Run a Railroad

The old days

This was how we used ancient technology to move freight. You may be aware that in the old days, we used machines like the one above to communicate with railroad computers. A Telex machine could transmit at 66 words per minute and Telex network time was expensive. To keep the cost down, you preset your message by using a paper punch tape. Once complete you snapped the tape into the reader dialed up the receiver and pushed send. Later we got TWX machines that could transmit 120 words per minute.

This was the technology until about 1980 when fax arrived to the masses and we could transmit pages at the remarkable speed of 2 or 4 minutes (higher quality at 4 minutes). Plain paper fax arrived in the early and mid-eighties. Fax cards for PCs came about in about 1990. They were expensive. New technology breakthroughs are generally expensive.

Mid-Eighties

TMS or Transportation Management Systems mainly originated in the mid-eighties written languages like COBOL and Fortran. They ran on mainframes and cost millions. Prices on technology always fall over time to innovators. New computer languages and modern cloud computing servers have dropped the prices on next generation TMS platforms to level affordable by companies of any size. Starter out of the box systems start at about $200.00 per month.

Today

ShippersEdge TMS offers a starter system called our Professional Edition which borrows most of the technology of our Enterprise Edition. It is a highly capable TMS and has advanced features you won’t find on Freightview and Kuebix. It does offer customization and advanced reporting. It offers shipment and document storage and you can receive electronic invoicing. (Yes we do EDI where needed) It offers file uploading to capture shipment information so your orders are in the system quickly and accurately. You can use the reporting features to export data to your other software platforms.

And Tomorrow

As your company grows we can add extremely advanced functionality, customized for you and fully integrate with any software platform for real time updating. Plus, you’ll be able to use the same interface you’ve been using and add the “I wish I had a button that does that does this and another one that does that” plus add functionality for all of your departments.

ShippersEdge is the most affordable full featured TMS on the market today.

Contact ShippersEdge email timothy.taylor@shipperesedge.com or by phone at 952-777-4421 or visit us on the web at www.shippersedgetms.com