Logistics Software Aids in Retail Vendor Compliancy

Vendor compliancy occurs when a vendor meets a set of requirements imposed on it by a buyer of its products. Vendor compliance focuses on making it easier for the buyer to receive goods, process them upon reception, and bring them to store shelves, where applicable. Unfortunately for manufacturers, the most complex compliance standards are usually handed down by companies that have the largest buying power, a fact that causes some companies to question whether the money necessary to implement the standards would be worth the profits that resulted from doing business with an entity. In the long run, adapting business standards to meet compliance standards is almost always beneficial, as nothing can replace the selling power of having large contracts with major companies and retailers. However, affording the infrastructure necessary to facilitate compliance can still be a problem in the short run.

Retail Vendor Compliancy and Logistics Software

When you look at a major buyer’s retail vendor compliancy scorecard, a rating system that ranks vendors according to their compliance to a number of requirements, it’s often difficult to ascertain how to begin meeting the requirements. However, upon closer inspection, many companies find that a majority of compliance issues, and certainly the most critical ones, are associated with the shipping process, such as product labeling, product packaging, and method of shipment, to name a few. Yet, here there emerges another roadblock for many vendors: how to gain more control over the shipping process through logistics. Most companies receive their shipping logistics from one of three sources: an in-house logistic department, a third party logistics (3PL) provider, or by implementing logistic software, which allows you to become your own logistics provider without possessing logistical expertise.

In-House Logistics

Meeting shipping needs in-house is the traditional preference of companies that can afford to hire their own logistic experts, who typically earn around $80,000 per year. This fact alone prevents many companies from going in-house with their shipping process, as well as the fact that most companies pursue in-house logistic arrangements upon purchasing their own fleet, once and for all ending their dependence on 3PL.

3PL

What you receive from 3PL depends entirely on what type of 3PL provider you contract with: standard 3PL providers, who offer basic shipping services and seldom practice shipping logistics as a core practice; service developers, who offer more specialized services but not a comprehensive approach to the shipping process; customer adapters, who manage an existing shipping process but don’t propose new solutions; and customer developers, who manage the shipping process and do propose new solutions. For vendor requirements, customer developers make the most sense. But you can receive the same level of focus through logistic software at a fraction of the cost.

Logistics Software

Also referred to as freight transportation software, logistic software is priced as a software as a service (SAAS) offering, making it less expensive than other logistic options. What this means for vendors is less money spent on meeting vendor requirements, and an annual reduction in shipping expense that can be delegated toward other compliance needs. After using freight transportation software for one year, most companies experience a 10 percent reduction in shipping expense that increases in years following.

Warehousing Management Software: One Of The Best Investments You Can Make For Business Here’s Why

Warehousing software can be expensive which is why in this tough economy it is easy to understand why a business owner, whether they be large or small would not want to take on an unneeded expense.

After all the ultimate goal of business is to keep expenses down so you are able to maximize profits to the best of your ability. However, certain things you can purchase should not be looked at as expenses.

These things should be looked at as assets, tools for business to grow and function more efficiently. Warehousing management software offers just this. There are a lot of businesses who have probably heard of using this type of software, but many of them are still not sold on how powerful it can be for them. Not a problem, you can easily be convinced. The advantages are plenty.

The entire purpose of warehousing management software is to enable a user to get an instant picture of certain information that is very pivotal.

Quick access means that warehouse operations function far smoother than what they may be at the moment. You will be able to cut back on various costs, and as a result increase your bottom line.

For starters, you need to constantly be aware of how much inventory is in your warehouse. You may already have a system in place for this, but it can be made far more effective.

Warehousing management software will help you know instantly how much inventory is in your warehouse, whether it be for specific parts or for everything.

You need to know how many orders are being shipped at the moment, this gives you an idea of how much product is being moved. The logistics software is going to help you get an instant picture of this as well.

At times your business is going to have pending orders. There are several processes involved in this, and you need to know what they are. Warehousing management software will easily alert you to the various stages of processing when it comes to pending orders.

Does your business hire staff? Odds are it probably does, and you need to make sure they are being as productive as possible. You cannot afford to pay people who are not being productive right?

Warehousing management software will allow you to set up a system so that you can monitor staff productivity details. This enables you to make sure your staff is performing the way they should and that your warehouse is operating the way it is supposed to.

You also can use the software to see how many goods have been shipped by the warehouse for a specified period of time. This information is going to be needed at times, and you can easily search for it for any time period you wish.

Businesses that are smaller and have not had the chance to automate their warehousing management process will definitely benefit from using warehousing management software.

Logistics software is a very simple way to automate your warehouse management process without having to interrupt the flow of your business. You can be up and running in no time and if you need help it is easily available.

Do not let the cost of warehousing management software deter you from deciding to make an investment in it. The longevity of your business is important to you right?

Having this type of inventory software at your disposal will benefit you in ways that will protect your business from the tough economy.

Your business needs to operate as efficiently as possible, and you definitely cannot rely on the old way of doing things. Make the investment in some good warehousing management software today and start realizing the benefits mentioned in this article.

How Transportation Management Software Promotes Intelligent Execution

There is a subset of supply chain management called “transportation management system” that refers specifically to transportation operations and is a component within an enterprise resource planning system. This area has evolved quite a bit in recent years thanks to technological advancements, and now transportation management software has made it possible for companies to add context to a shipper’s transportation data. This software oversees four key processes of transportation management: planning and decision making, transportation execution, transportation follow-up, and measurement. Modern transportation management software has the ability to use context to determine whether:

  • an incorrect invoice charge was caused by a carrier re-weighing their freight or by re-classifying their freight
  • a shipment arrived late due to inclement weather or due to the consignee not being available to sign for the delivery

These are just two examples of the types of judgments that logistics shipping companies can make with the help of transportation management software. Here are a few more ways that this technology can be used today:

Exception Management Process

This software can be configured to periodically alert an individual when lanes, carriers, or facilities do not meet specified targets. This is especially helpful because it allows managers to instantly know when the amount of business their company is doing has changed. Before transportation management software, management would have had to wait up to a year before being made aware that targets were not being met. The sooner that management is aware of a problem, the sooner it can begin to look for a solution.

Freight Execution

Today, a single transportation management software product can be used for shipments in all modes, whereas before additional applications had to be added for special cases like small parcels. Additional documents, which are needed for shipments like pallet labels or hazardous materials documentation, can now be printed on-site. In the past, this documentation needed to be printed ahead of time.

Improved Communication

Logistics shipping companiescan provide vendors with a tool that allows them to pre-load shipping business’ rules, carriers, and purchase orders. Using this pre-loaded information, vendors can send shipments to the shipper’s carriers without having to wait for the carrier to provide this information.

Dashboards

All of the aforementioned data can be pulled into a centralized location, or dashboard, that shippers can use to monitor the company’s freight activity in real-time. The result is an effective measurement of the Freight Payment and Pre-Audit so that it matches the data that is continuously coming in. Put more simply, the ability to monitor this data in real-time means that shipper is finally able to determine what is happening in their supply chain. Only by staying up-to-date on trends and data will a shipper be able to make the most intelligent decisions.

When logistics shipping companies decide that they are ready to acquire transportation management software, they have three ways to do so. They can use a traditional purchased license (on-premise licensing,) a remote or cloud-based solution (hosted licensing,) or a blend of these two options (on-premise hosted licensing.) Shippers looking to determine which option is best for their organization should reach out to a transportation management software provider about their preferred opinion.