Last-Minute Shipments? Here’s How to Ensure Quality Doesn’t Slip

Successful supply chain managers are planners. They have exceptional foresight and a knack for expecting the unexpected. But even the best supply chain pros can’t always anticipate last-minute shipments that require them to find carrier capacity ASAP.

The reality is that the occasional eleventh-hour shipment is inevitable. Clients make urgent requests that are in the shipper’s best interests to fulfill. Spikes in demand come out of nowhere, and a shipper’s contracted carriers are unable to help. Small mistakes cause orders to fall through the cracks. In these moments, the best-laid plans go out the window, and shippers are forced to find carriers that can accept a shipment at short notice. But while they say beggars can’t be choosers, jumping on the first available carrier can cause bigger problems down the line if shippers fail to properly vet them for performance and reliability.

Quality is critical, even in a pinch. So, how can supply chain managers ensure last-minute shipments are picked up and delivered promptly—without compromising carrier quality?

Utilize a tool that makes comparison easy

Last-minute shipments are a thorny problem for a few reasons. Not only do they tend to be more expensive than those planned weeks out, but short lead times can also spell late pickups and deliveries—doing real damage to important customer relationships. And since short-notice orders often come in because a customer has an urgent need, failing to deliver within the promised window can erode their trust in a shipper’s ability to support them when they need it the most.

A robust and efficient transportation management system (TMS) like CTSI-Global’s Honeybee TMS™ can help supply chain managers find capacity quickly—and ensure it’s up to par. Instead of spending hours frantically calling around for quotes and being forced to entrust precious cargo to the first random carrier that says yes, Honeybee TMS allows shippers to put their freight in front of a vast pool of pre-vetted carriers—making it easier to find capacity while ensuring reliability.

A TMS allows staff to rapidly source bids, compare carriers across multiple dimensions beyond price alone, and schedule the shipment with a fully insured and bonded carrier with a solid track record. This takes the guesswork out of the process—and helps to safeguard the customer experience, encouraging repeat business.

Find capacity for last-minute shipments, without sacrificing quality

Even if it works on occasion, scrambling to manually source a reliable carrier for urgent and no-notice shipments isn’t a sustainable practice. When a last-minute shipment is necessary, Honeybee TMS can help shippers rise to the occasion and prove they’re in the client’s corner by providing on-time service from a reliable and trusted carrier—every time.

Backed by our network of 20,020 trusted carriers, Honeybee TMS makes finding capacity a breeze, even at short notice. And thanks to the powerful scheduling and order management tools—backed by intuitive analytics and business intelligence features—fire drills won’t be an issue often because forecasting accuracy will improve, and nothing will slip through the cracks.

Take the stress of last-minute shipments. Contact us today.

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