In 2021, it's easier than ever to track freight on the move. Even consumers can track their online order from start to finish without having to do so much as push a button on a keyboard.
On the logistics side of the process, tracking bulk shipments is a bit more complicated, but the technology and support is available to make it as efficient as possible. After all, thousands of packages are in transit every single day!
Unfortunately, even with advanced technology delays are inevitable, resulting in heightened levels of stress, frustration, and more costs. But that's where logistics innovation comes in handy, and there are plenty of tricks you can utilize to better track shipments and minimize delays. We'll tell you about a few of our favorites in this post!
Whether your goods are riding in the back of a truck or in a rail car, putting effort into quality packaging not only protects your freight but can make it easier to handle, minimizing delays. Pallets are an efficient way to package, because they offer stability and you can package a bulk amount of products on a single pallet. If you aren't sure what type of packaging materials to use, always consult with a reputable 3PL company, because they have the experience to give you the best advice.
Automatic Equipment Identification tags or AEI tags are found on long haul trucks and railcars moving freight across the nation. High tech readers use radio frequencies to scan the tags as the vehicles pass by along their designated routes, giving freight companies an easy way to keep an eye on their goods from point A to point B. These tags offer vital real time information about the products being shipped, and can also pinpoint delays.
This goes without saying, but bad weather or road construction can crop up at any time, causing delays. At least you can plan ahead and know your routes. Certain regions of the US have predictable weather patterns, so you can keep an eye on the seasons, for example when it's hurricane season or winter. Reserve special equipment ahead of time so you already have it ready to go instead of getting stuck on a waitlist once the season rolls around and everyone is clamoring for supplies. Some towns have seasons designated for road construction, so this is something to check as well to avoid traffic jams.
A transportation management system (TMS) is another software that is highly useful for streamlining the supply chain. You can easily track your shipment with accuracy, and it provides data that allows you to make the smartest decisions to save money when issues arise. Some TMS functions share information on road conditions, fuel costs, and can be used for logistics logs. You can even access this information directly on your smartphone, allowing you to conveniently receive real time data while you're on the road.