Asset-Based Carriers Give Shippers an Advantage

Q: What are the advantages of sourcing supply chain solutions directly through asset-based providers?

A: When capacity becomes tight, maintaining relationships with asset-based carriers gives shippers—and non-asset solution providers who partner with us—the peace of mind of knowing their supply chain and service will remain seamless and fluid.

When capacity is constrained, communication is essential to ensure the best outcome and a predictable supply chain that improves the customer experience. Working directly with a carrier provides advantages because the communication is clear and concise, without any barriers to understanding what it takes to create a competitive edge.

Q: How do you see the fall peak season developing over the next few months? And how can asset-based providers rise to meet the needs and expectations of their customers?

A: We expect modest growth on a year-over-year comparison. The period from the end of August 2012 until the holiday season will continue to be the most robust for surface transportation providers. Capacity will be in high demand, and supply chain professionals must manage it carefully. A surge in shipment activity occurred at the end of August, which may signal a strong finish to the third quarter and a healthy final quarter of the 2012 calendar year.

September 2012 will be a challenging month for asset-based providers. This year there are two fewer business days, and for many customers, September is the end of a quarter. Therefore, it is critical for asset-based providers to communicate and align their operations with customer equipment needs. When they do this right, they can offer transportation solutions that provide the quality service shippers have come to expect.

An added benefit carriers offer shippers during peak season is the security of knowing their shipments are moving in a controlled environment managed by the professionals who designed it.

Q: How do asset-based providers benefit from transportation forecasting?

A: When you get it right, transportation forecasting generates momentum for an organization. This is fundamental to any business, but critical in the transportation industry, where carriers compete in a highly transactional environment and need to adjust variable costs effectively to be successful.

Only the best are able to get ahead of the curve, and to accomplish that, they must be immersed in the available information. Executing proper interventions in the carrier’s network provides growth opportunities for the enterprise. Managing to that core belief leads asset-based providers back to the customer, where active listening can pay off.

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