Have you noticed your transportation costs creeping upward over the last year? Even if you are experiencing a surge of growth in your sales (congratulations), you will still want to keep a close eye on the incremental increase of freight spend in relation to your average cost per load year to date year over year. When in growth mode, the creep in freight cost can be mistakenly attributed wholly to the increase of sales, when in fact, you may be experiencing some symptoms many of the companies we’ve worked with have been able to identify and correct, saving thousands in the process.
This is perhaps the most important part of your logistics process because it is one of the easiest to correct. Accessorials are extra charges for special services, equipment, or the unexpected add-on’s that happen as a result of something not working the way it should. The latter are the ones that you can identify and correct quickly. Detention and layover are two of the most common extra fees in truckload shipping. By educating your shippers, vendors, and customers on the value (cost) associated with the driver’s time thanks to the Hours of Service regulations, you enlist them as partners in avoiding holding drivers too long or setting up shipments before they’re ready. Every dock involved needs to be prepared to accept the driver in quickly, get them loaded or unloaded, and on their way. This also helps ensure on-time delivery!
Gone are the days where you can spread your freight across a variety of providers, at least, if you want to get the best pricing. You have to leverage the volume you’re shipping in order to build loyal providers that will not only discount the costs of your truckloads, but go to the ends of the earth to jump quickly when you have a last minute load or unusual shipment request. Building relationships will also reduce the cost of lost customers when you have a vested partner that cares as much about customer service as you do!
It may seem difficult at first, and you may feel resistance from some of your providers, but if you’re able to put multiple orders together to maximize the space on a truck, you will reap savings. Use caution, adding more than 1-2 stops on an otherwise 1 pick 1 drop shipment can end up making your load undesirable and thus harder to find equipment for, or end up in higher costs due to the extra transit days required to accommodate delivery windows.
Here at Hybrid, we have worked with our customers in order to provide these as well as several other cost-saving techniques, and we would be happy to discuss these options with you as well. Take a look at some of our locations to see if there is an office near you, but keep in mind, any office can serve any customer in any location.