Surviving the tumultuous year of 2020 represented the most critical challenge shipping leaders had to face in years. Adjusting current logistics strategies demonstrated the second great challenge of the pandemic. As 2021 begins, new growth and adjustments need freight managers’ attention to start the recovery process. Embracing new and improved logistics strategies remains the best way to adapt to clients’ changing demands in 2021 and beyond. And it’s essential to know a few things about enterprise shippers’ top logistics tactics.
1. Enterprise shippers are looking for ways to capture and analyze more data
Making the most of available technology has always been critical for fine-tuning a supply chain. Now more than ever, shippers need to find innovative ways to make the most of real-time freight data and analysis. Today, logistics strategies rely on accurate and up-to-date data for everything from capacity planning to invoicing. Data will ensure smooth operations and successful executions at every point along the supply chain. Capturing, analyzing and applying data will help improve load capacity, boost delivery success rates, increase profit margins and enhance shipping insights.
2. Logistics strategies will leverage expert insight
The best enterprise shippers look for ways to improve trucking costs and operations with big data applications. This can represent a challenge for some managers to handle alone. A need for a genuinely independent partner becomes clear when one takes a step back from daily operations. When managers try to look objectively at their supply chain network, the need for an outside perspective remains clear. The best logistics strategies depend on expert insight, such as the data and analysis found in FreightWaves Passport, which focuses on the chain’s inner workings. Unbiased insight and suggestions highlight what third-party strategists provide to freight and logistic managers.
3. Strategic value lies within access to actionable data
Understanding the platform’s value and the data collected is vital for growth and shipping lane management. Additionally, awareness of how to implement predictive analytics and planning for the possible outcomes gives managers the upper hand. Actionable data use boosts freight transport processes and allows for more effective strategic planning. Strong and versatile logistics strategies depend on this data.
4. Logisticians will want vast and granular views to make the best decisions possible
Making fair use of logistics strategies often comes down to where the focus is within a supply chain network. Some key things to keep in mind when it comes to decision-making include:
- Short-term goals need updating often to avoid stagnation.
- Long-term goals should also be tweaked and adjusted as needed.
- Sometimes data analysis needs to be refocused and fine-tuned.
- At other times data analysis should remain broad and long-range in scope.
- Adaptability and flexibility will remain essential for growth.
- Real-time freight data, communications and decision-making become essential.
Developing and maintaining robust protocols takes careful planning, but they will always pay dividends in the end.
5. The remainder of 2021 will be subject to continuous spot versus contract balancing
2020 showed the industry that adaptability remains critical during times of disruption. This same flexibility will remain essential in 2021 and for the foreseeable future. One significant influence on the industry last year was the balance between contract shipping and spot capacity integration. Though the road to recovery has begun, the new normal may be forever different than just a few short years ago. Freight managers and fleet operators will need to continue utilizing all capacity options. To secure loads and keep their trucks running full, compromises will remain essential within logistics strategies.
6. Full digitalization continues to be a goal for all enterprises
Planning gets complicated at times, and letting go of past methods and processes will become even more challenging. But it represents a needed feature for continued survival. Automation and digitalization must remain the goal of freight managers and logistics personnel now and in the years ahead. According to California Manufacturing Technology Consulting, “A successfully implemented logistics strategy is important for companies that are dedicated to keeping service levels at the highest levels possible despite changes that occur in the supply chain. Remember, the goal of any logistics strategy is to deliver your customers the right product, at the right quality, at the right price, at the right time, in the right place – while spending as little money as possible.” Making the most of the tools and automation available will help managers maximize profits, reduce waste and secure more loads.
Align your enterprise to these trends to achieve the most substantial growth through 2021
Logistics strategies of today are continuously changing to enable collaboration among shippers, carriers and brokers. And as technology advances, forward-looking strategies will deploy automation and digitalization to maximize value and opportunities to conserve resources. Ensure your enterprise is ready for the future expansion of technology by embracing these strategies and putting the power of freight data and forecasting to work. Request a FreightWaves SONAR demo by clicking the button below to get started.