How To Avoid Them and What To Do When You Make One
Preparing for the inevitable is smart business. At The Logistix Company (TLC), our team has spent time with many customers in dozens of scenarios. Our experience has taught us how to prepare for the inevitable as well as respond to the unexpected. We have compiled a list of mishaps that you may encounter along with our best recommendations to prepare for the situations before they knock on your business’s door.
1. The Details
Every pick-up and delivery is a separate project. Treat it as such. All require attention to detail. In some cases, details are left out or overlooked. It is important to communicate special requirements, e.g., 1) an appointment for delivery is necessary, 2) a secondary point of contact at the delivery site or 3) specific equipment is needed.THE MISHAP: Inexperienced carriers or independent carriers sometimes miss a question or do not consider options that customers may require for product delivery. If your carrier doesn’t ask you all the right questions, you might not have the experience to know all the details you should provide.
HOW TO PREPARE: Over the years, TLC has built a database of questions to ask customers for most scenarios. Ideally, customers would provide all of the necessary information for delivery, but as we stated, you may not be prepared with all the right answers. We make every effort to choose carriers with the shipping options and have built up our own experiences to ask you the right questions.
2. Short Pick-up Lead Time
Short lead times happen. They are inconvenient occurrences, but when you have products to move or orders to fill at late notice, you still hope to meet the demands.
THE MISHAP: Your company is currently contracting solo asset-based carriers to complete your shipment needs. In an unexpected turn of events, your carrier could have other orders to fill and not be available to meet short notice pick-up times.
HOW TO PREPARE: Our solution and recommendation is to work with an established logistics management company (3PL) and have them complete your shipments far in advance before a short-notice order hits. Why? Your logistics provider will already be prepared with carrier options for you. Using the same 3PL likely means that they are using a few select carriers running your shipment lane. When the 11th hour strikes and you’re in need of a short notice delivery, your 3PL has options. Using the same 3PL means they have a carrier on your particular lane, and increased business on a lane increases the likelihood that they will have trucks available on that lane in a pinch. Carriers also communicate to 3PLs with excess truck availability weekly, and sometimes daily. Your 3PL will know where extra backup is available, especially for emergencies.
3. Relying on one carrier
A dangerous mistake that many shippers make is to rely on one carrier for all their shipping needs. While forming a trusting relationship with a carrier may seem reasonable, relying on one carrier alone to handle all your delivery needs can be costly over time.THE MISHAP: There is a problem with your carrier, e.g., there is a strike or a downsizing of their facilities. You can find yourself with a lot of freight piling up and nobody to help you move it.
HOW TO PREPARE: We recommend establishing relationships with 3PLs that own their own trucks or have a network of asset-based carriers. At TLC, we have built our team and complex network of carriers so our customers can be prepared for all types of scenarios, no matter how unusual. This enables us to offer competitive rates and flexible shipping operations for every situation.