According to research from McKinsey & Company, the growth of eCommerce in the United States expanded at a rate of 10 years in just three months.
While the acceleration of eCommerce isn’t anything new, the US retail landscape has shifted rapidly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The economic impact of the pandemic has forced some businesses to close their doors, while simultaneously accelerating a shift to online shopping.
Although the recent exponential growth isn’t likely to last, the rapid shift to eCommerce is forcing retailers and shippers to reimagine their supply chains, including navigating a rise in less-than-truckload (LTL) shipments and an increase in shipments to fulfillment centers that are smaller than a full truckload worth of goods.
Technology’s role in tracking LTL and parcel shipments
Fortunately, having the right technology in place can help shippers and carriers increase visibility of these LTL and parcel shipments in transit. By having the right solutions in place, you can not only help meet rising consumer expectations on where their purchases are in the delivery process but increase visibility for all stakeholders.
Leveraging a supply chain visibility solution can help you better manage your LTL and parcel shipments through:
Increased tracking capabilities
It isn’t just good enough to know if a shipment has been picked up, it is crucial to see exactly where it is in the supply chain and when it is likely to reach its final destination.
Through Trimble’s Visibility platform, we enable LTL and parcel carriers to provide robust shipment updates throughout the process. By empowering carriers to give details on crucial points in the journey such as when a shipment is picked up, in transit and estimated to arrive, you can have confidence in knowing that your freight is going to get to where it needs to be when it needs to get there.
An intuitive user interface
Having access to key shipment details is only useful if you can easily access and understand the information. Through Trimble’s Visibility platform, users can harness an easy-to-understand interface, designed to help view status-driven updates, including shipment summaries, milestones and an interactive map featuring origin and destination details of LTL and parcel shipments.
In addition to the user-friendly interface, the platform also aggregates all the critical details you need in a single place, eliminating the “swivel chair” effect of toggling through multiple systems and screens to access the shipment data that is important to you.
Advanced preference options across modes of transit
In an increasingly connected world, and supply chain, some shipments might make their journey on multiple modes of transit, including on over-the-road truckload and LTL trucks but also via rail or on a vessel.
Regardless of how a shipment makes its way through the supply chain, it is crucial that you can see its status through any of these major modes of transport. Through our Visibility platform, you can make adjustments to organizational preferences to get more granular shipment details and increased control across all modes, including Truckload, LTL, Parcel, Rail and Ocean.
Gaining visibility for all types of shipments
Although the increase in LTL and parcel shipments brings a focus on the benefits of a supply chain visibility platform, the advantages of this technology aren’t limited solely to these types of freight. Regardless of what kind of shipments you are monitoring, a supply chain visibility platform can help you utilize technology and streamline access through:
Customized shipment views
With real-time data analytics and robust filter and search capabilities, Trimble’s Visibility platform can allow you to see what’s moving on every order, at every stop, on every shipment. Customized map views can also utilize defined searches and filters, giving you insight into shipments that are on time, at risk of being late or already running late.
Empowered with this information, shippers and carriers can address shipment issues before they come major problems and allow customers to stay informed of shipment status.
Stakeholder views at a glance
Providing your planning and logistics coordination teams with the data they need can help them to identify and mitigate supply chain risks across your entire network. Trimble’s Visibility platform features an executive level view of hot spots within the network and allows you to make proactive decisions to reduce risks to your supply chain.
The COVID-19 pandemic has also shown that work can be done pretty much anywhere. Regardless of where work is done, Trimble’s Visibility platform features the ability to add custom notifications through SMS or email.
By keeping you informed while on the go, these real-time notifications reduce the need for excessive phone calls and adhoc emails between carriers, shippers and customers. Plus, these notifications can let you and your team know about exceptions before they become issues allowing you to spend less time on track-and-trace activities and more time ensuring an optimized customer experience.
Discover how Trimble can help enhance your supply chain visibility
As the world’s supply chain continues to get reshaped by the COVID-19 pandemic and the rise in eCommerce, having visibility into freight is crucial to keeping customers happy and staying ahead of your competition.
At Trimble, we have a long-term connected supply chain focus, enabling connectivity across multiple systems and enabling a private ecosystem and marketplace among carriers, shippers, 3PLs and brokers to enhance how they work together and how we supply our world.
Contact us today to learn more about our Visibility platform and how we can help you reach new levels of efficiency and productivity.