6 Tips to Build a Logistics Metrics Scorecard That Guides Decisions

Adam RobinsonFreight Market Blog

Staying up to date with the latest trends and logistics metrics amounts to thriving through disruption. Anything to gain and keep the competitive advantage will define the future of the biggest and smallest players in the industry. Therefore, paying attention to data and building actionable metrics are critical to freight forecasting during COVID-19 and through the next disruption. As reported by Supply & Demand Chain Executive, “For organizations to stay competitive in this rapidly changing environment, adaptability and agility are vital for business success. Partners need to be empowered and have full visibility to shift suppliers, manufacturers or even global production locations based on uncontrollable events at a moment’s notice.

Another way to source new vendors due to changing availability is to look for opportunities to form long-term relationships with partners. Industry events, whether held online or in person, are also great opportunities to discover new partners and connect with new vendors outside your standard network.”

The freight and transportation industry relies on applying data and information in a practical and timely manner. Everything depends on access to precise and actionable data from dealing with orders, shipping out loads, tracking shipment progress, keeping customers satisfied, and finalizing orders and payments. Having a healthy logistics metrics system that leverages supply chain predictive analytics will help everything run more smoothly. Here are some tips to help you build your metrics scorecard faster and easier. 

1. Connect your operation with near real-time data

More accurate and up-to-date data enables better decision-making in freight brokerage software and beyond. In addition, the faster that problems can be addressed and dealt with before they get out of hand, the better. To build a successful scorecard, freight managers need real-time freight data. Period. 

Freight managers should also leverage digital resources to measure trading partners’ performance, particularly suppliers. At the heart of smooth operations is logistics metrics, which depend on good collaboration with partners. Digital analysis and detail-oriented recordkeeping of all mode activities, including ocean import data, makes it easy to enhance overall performance. 

2. Identify opportunities for improvement based on underperforming carriers

Real-time descriptive analytics through prescriptive analytics insights’ automation makes it easy to spot problem areas and weak points. In a sense, it all goes back to increased visibility within your network’s performance. More visibility is essential to make changes and adjustments to any process or task within the chain, identifying and correcting possible weak links. And in the scope of freight carrier management, the next best actions might include expanding a carrier contract, renegotiating current deals, bringing new lanes onboard and more. 

3. Inform frontline workers with self-management of performance via metrics and analytics

Logistics metrics make it easy for employees to continue growing and managing truckload RFPs and day-to-day operations with transportation analytics’ precision and accuracy. It also frees up freight managers and shippers to deal with more critical issues. At the same time, managers can focus on what matters most, particularly overall profitability and team performance improvement. It’s vital for frontline workers to self-manage workloads and grow more efficient as brokerages and businesses expand. Keeping that top-of-mind will go a long way in reducing growing pains and strengthen change management goals too.

4. Create adaptive scorecards that benchmark carriers against their competitors

Keeping ahead of the competition is vital and the best way to get there is with robust freight data analysis. All-inclusive scorecards and metrics can make it easier to use the data effectively. Adaptive scorecards also rely on the latest market trends and analytics insights to guide decision-making. And regardless of industry vertical, that can dramatically impact prioritizing loads, securing available capacity, and avoiding unexpected billing charges.

5. Remember to include any unique discounts or value-added services that impact scores

All sorts of data can be included in the logistics metrics, so be sure to focus on targeted data. The more focused the data pull, the more concentrated the analysis results are. That includes checking all load details for value-added services that impact carriers’ or lanes’ overall scores, such as wait times, amenities for drivers, automated truck unloading/loading systems, cross-docking, drop-shipping or unique discounts. Essentially, more focused data helps to squeeze out inefficiencies to ensure the best cost allocation per load. And that leads directly into the next step of building a successful logistics metrics scorecard.

6. Think in terms of profitability per load

It is not how many loads you run; their contents and worth should be the focus. A few well-priced loads can earn you more by saving on fuel and labor. It’s also relevant to include the speed of booking and execution of loads, too. 

A lot of data points within a logistics metrics platform can be analyzed, including booking, delivery and payment timeframes. Metrics can cover all the essential issues that mean the most to the supply chain, including customer service, freight invoicing and settlement, auditing, and of course, back-office key performance indicators to help managers manage frontline workers by exception.

Increase your teams’ successes with a robust logistics metrics scorecard

Keeping up with the latest trends and logistics metrics has always been an essential part of the freight and logistics management industry. And each of the above steps has a common denominator – they are based on a specific improvement or niche aspect of supply chain management. However, their collective power is what’s the most valuable. Staying ahead of the competition and maintaining a decisive advantage is key to short- and long-term success. Remember that paying attention to data metrics and logistics for your freight network is essential above all else. And it begins with creating a digestible, actionable metrics scorecard. Request a FreightWaves SONAR demo by clicking the button below.