Business Logistics: Tips for Saving Money on Freight Bill Financing

Anyone who has not been living in a cave for the past two years knows about the supply chain disruptions that continue to plague local and global shippers and transportation service providers. Many expenses arise from these disruptions that impact the bottom line profits for shippers today; one of the most volatile and impactful is freight bill financing.

Managing freight costs and freight payments, whether per mile, per load, or truckload is vital to overcoming the obstacles and disruptions currently plaguing the industry. "Ongoing pandemic effects, data utilization, and changing logistics patterns drive an industry that's quickly adapting and anticipating shipper needs. The state of freight payment is healthy and growing with an emphasis on global trends, better data utilization, and micro-logistics." This is according to an early 2022 report from Logistics Management. Successful shipping and transportation operations are at the heart of a strong focus on improving business logistics and daily operations.

The impact of the pandemic, related shutdowns, and disruptions has made it more challenging for shippers and logistics managers to balance costs and profits. Implementing changes to consolidated freight shipping and improving operational efficiency can help lower freight costs. However, offering the best and most competitive freight shipping estimates and keeping profits as high as possible relies heavily on intelligent freight bill financing. Here are 15 ways shippers can save money with freight financing by focusing on business logistics and freight visibility.

1. Aggregate Data Across All Connections

One of the most significant contributors to poor freight bill financing is the lack of connectivity between different departments and aspects of the business. Aggregate data pulled and analyzed from multiple points of view paints a clearer picture of freight expenses and costs. Actionable analytics and insights allow management to identify problem areas and address them more efficiently.

2. Leverage Dashboards to Easily Manage Your Freight Financing Costs

Several tools can simplify freight financing. Digital dashboards and collaborative platforms are the most impactful. Accessing real-time freight data, monitoring current trends, and enabling on-demand communications can improve financial performance and management. It is easier to find and address issues when everyone is connected and has the same access to reliable freight analytics and insights.

3. Eliminate Unnecessary Packaging and Dunnage

The cost to move freight can vary depending on some factors such as weight and cargo size. Managing freight bill financing involves attention to detail, such as reducing unnecessary packaging and cargo packaging protocols. Even lowering weight by a pound or two can have significant impacts when applied to multiple loads daily and weekly.

4. Increase Your Lead Time

A large part of business logistics for freight shipping and transportation companies comes down to managing lead time. The more wiggle room there is to account for minor delays and issues, the less chance of incurring detention and additional drayage fees. Proper lead time management and scheduling are a big part of freight bill financing management and the appropriate balance of freight payments and expenses.

5. Track Rates by Varying Granularities

When managing freight costs, shippers need to watch vital metrics and the various granular data points accessible. Monitoring statistics and trends within shipping lanes, carriers, transportation modes, individual loads, and such can provide valuable data on costs. Knowing what is going on in the industry can help shippers better control shipping costs.

6. Know Your Accessorial Costs and When They Apply

Small expenses can quickly add up and eat away at profits as they add to the operational costs for shipping companies. Freight bill financing must take into account things like the rising fuel costs, which have hit record highs for commercial and private drivers, according to a nationwide survey from AAA. Small increases can quickly add up to significant expenses for shippers and can make freight auditing a worthwhile investment.

7. Optimize Your Dockworkers' Schedules

When managing expenses such as freight cost per mile, business logistics managers have to look at schedules for dockworkers and other personnel carefully. Poor scheduling can lead to backlogs as loads wait to get loaded ad unloaded by a stressed and overworked crew. Properly scheduling workers ensures optimal efficiency and reduces delays.

8. Consider Working With a 3PL

Managing the delicate balance of freight bill financing and other aspects of shipping and logistics is often more accessible with a third-party partner and a strong shipping network. Local service providers and industry leaders can provide valuable insight and resources, and service opportunities that otherwise would not be readily available or feasible.

9. Understand the Market's Effect on Trucking

A surprising influence on trucking rates and other expenses directly relates to current transportation services market trends. Even when disruptive circumstances such as pandemic shutdowns begin to subside, ongoing consumer habits can remain and impact freight bill financing and planning. Good business logistics demand management focuses on trucking market trends and customer needs.

10. Use Analytics to Detect and Correct Anomalies

Like any commercial budgeting and planning process, freight financing involves a lot of analytics and data comparison. With more than 11 billion tons of cargo shipped by sea each year, according to ICS, minor issues and anomalies can quickly lead to significant problems for shippers. Anomaly detection and correction in the supply chain, when done quickly, can save shippers a great deal of time and money.

11. Use Zone Skipping and Hub Injection

Another aspect of shipping and freight transportation that can lead to higher expenses is the length of time freight spends on trailers and moving from one point to another. To save money and improve freight bill financing, shippers should consider services such as zone skipping and hub injections to speed up the overall process. Doing so will use less fuel and optimize capacity. Whether focusing on local or global supply chains, these moves can improve overall effectiveness.

12. Consolidate Smaller Loads Into Bigger Loads

Sometimes saving money and improving freight bill financing comes down to simple logistics and consolation. By combining smaller loads heading to the same destination, shippers can improve overall efficiency and reduce freight expenses and costs. Improving overall business logistics often requires rethinking how freight is loaded and handled.

13. Measure Performance of Carriers

A surprising number of shipping managers are not aware of how great an impact their carriers can have on overall freight bill financing management. By tracking carrier performance, reviews, ratings, and success, management will know when to keep a carrier or search for someone else. Carrier standards and metrics are a critical piece of the puzzle known as effective cost management.

14. Recognize the Environmental Impact of Fast Shipping

The impact same-day and next-day shipping has on freight costs remains a shock to managers. With consumers focusing on sustainability in logistics and conservative efforts, shippers need to adjust their business logistics and approach to account for this trend. Reducing environmental impact while still offering reliable shipping is the delicate balance managers must maintain.

15. Take Advantage of Both National and Regional Parcel Carriers

The final step shippers can take to manage cash flow better and improve overall freight bill financing is to tap into national and local carrier services. National carriers have the fleet and insight needed to make long-distance shipments quickly and efficiently. Local carriers know alternate routes and areas intimately and can improve last-mile drayage delivery services.

Cut Costs Across Freight Bill Financing With a Single Source of Truth for Logistics Audit Data

The impact of ongoing market disruptions and supply chain upheavals have made it more challenging for today's shippers and logistics managers. In addition to capacity issues, driver shortages, rising fuel costs, and increasing consumer demands, the struggle to balance costs and profits remains a primary concern for companies of all sizes.

Implementing changes to consolidated freight shipping processes and a shift towards better freight financing and management makes it easier to optimize transportation spend. However, offering the best and most competitive freight shipping estimates and keeping profits as high as possible comes down to business logistics and enhanced freight bill financing services.Contact Intelligent Audit today to learn more about balancing fast delivery options while keeping cheap freight shipping in mind for short-term and long-term business growth.

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