Truck shipping companies would be wise to adopt shipping logistics software and improved data collection tools, as a new survey from truck carrier U.S. Xpress found that a majority rely on less accurate tracking methods to stay on top of shipments.
Of the 400 supply chain executives polled, only about 40 percent said they used any data collection tools to help accurately keep track of shipping-related costs. In addition, approximately 20 percent of respondents labeled their data gathering and sharing initiative as unfavorable, showing that many businesses would likely benefit significantly by adopting automated data collection software.
The survey also found that:
- 59 percent of shipping companies use metrics to control costs.
- 43 percent are either currently or will soon implement a transport management system, and 21 percent have already utilized such a solution.
- About 20 percent of the the executives polled turn to historical data.
- 58 percent of those polled said they use reporting tools and improved decision making to cut down on shipping-related costs.
- 44 percent want to improve their electronic communications initiative, 37 percent indicated they would like to upgrade their reporting capabilities and 34 percent want to better integrate their logistics software with other applications.
"The survey demonstrates that there is great variance among shippers in terms of the level of technology they employ in doing freight optimization," said John White, U.S. Xpress Enterprises's executive vice president of sales and marketing. "However, regardless of what systems they are currently using, it is clear that more widespread and efficient use of transportation management systems, clearer supply-chain visibility, improved analytics, enhanced cooperation and data-sharing between carriers and shippers and more up-to-date data could go a long way toward optimizing loads and reducing costs for everyone involved. It is critical for carriers and shippers to work together to find mutually beneficial solutions."