Articles

How-To

Maximizing Your CRM System

Two-thirds of all Customer Relationship Management (CRM) initiatives fail, according to a recent study by Gartner Inc. Proper implementation and direction may be one problem. But many businesses overlook the fact that the CRM information they store and manage is inaccurate, outdated, or redundant. Here are 10 tips to help you maximize the effectiveness of […]

Read More

Selecting Core Carriers

Choosing core carriers can be a daunting task, especially with so many carriers out there wooing your business. Here are 10 tips to help you keep a clear head when carriers come courting with all their bells and whistles, from Bob Belshaw, vice president business development and Robert Harper, product support manager, transportation, Insight Inc., […]

Read More

Logistics Contingency Planning

Can your company weather a logistics disaster such as a terrorist attack, airport closure, or worker strike? These sudden disruptions can strand you—along with your customers’ freight. Here are tips on planning for a crisis, and handling emergency shipping when a major disruption happens, from Joel Childs, vice president of marketing, FedEx Custom Critical. 1. […]

Read More

Choosing Cross-Border Partners

Moving goods across U.S. borders into Mexico can be difficult if you don’t align yourself with the right partners and establish solid relationships with carriers and brokers. Here are suggestions to help you select your cross-border partners wisely, from Gene Sevilla-Secasa, vice president, managing director for Ryder Latin America. 1. Invest adequate time and do […]

Read More

Choosing the Right Logistics Consultant

Choosing a logistics consultant should not be a search for the lowest-cost solution, but rather a search for experience and success based on definitive criteria. Dr. Dick Powers, CEO and president of the Bend, Ore., and Manassas, Va.-based consulting firm INSIGHT, which solves logistics and supply chain issues with optimization-based solutions, offers these tips for […]

Read More

Finding the Right Logistics Recruiter

Alex Metz, president, Hunt Ltd., Lindhurst, N.J., offers these tips on deciding when to use a logistics recruiter and selecting the right one. 1. Recognize when you need help. If you need to replace an individual on staff confidentially, or you have a limited HR department that cannot process the field calls and interview candidates, […]

Read More

Using Brokers and Forwarders for Global Trade

Hiring a broker or forwarder to move international goods can help you manage complex documentation and processes. But it takes some know-how to select and work with these agents. California-based international trade logistics solutions company Open Harbor offers these 10 tips to streamline global trade through brokers and forwarders: 1. Know when to use a […]

Read More

Closing the 3PL Expectation Gap

If you don’t always get what you want when you hire a third-party logistics firm, don’t automatically blame the 3PL. It may be a matter of mixed signals or miscommunication. The key to a successful relationship starts with a clear RFP and excellent communications between the two firms. Michael J. Gardner, global chief operating officer […]

Read More

Choosing the Right Public Warehouse

The strategic importance of choosing a public warehouse that best meets a company’s needs is often overlooked. Indeed, the difference between public and contract warehousing often comes down to strategy, says Rosario Rizzo, vice president of global warehousing and freight management services for APL Logistics, a global provider of supply chain management services. Though a […]

Read More

Selecting an ERP System

Companies often decide to implement enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions based on demand from customers rather than their own manufacturing departments. Sounds great. But sometimes, after implementation, the ERP solution doesn’t quite deliver what the end user wants. The challenge is selecting the right kind of solution. A small manufacturer with several warehouses will have […]

Read More

Measuring Carrier Performance

You have just selected a new carrier. How do you make sure you’re getting the service you require? Rick O’Dell, president and CEO of Saia, a regional motor carrier based in Duluth, Ga., offers these top 10 metrics for measuring carrier performance. 1. Pickup performance. How can your delivery be made on time if your […]

Read More

Ensuring Cargo Security

Special containers, locks and alarms are well utilized by shippers to protect goods in transit. But in many cases the best insurance against cargo theft starts with the documentation process, says Lou Tyska, security consultant to Pinkerton Logistics Services, and chairman of the Transportation Security Council of the American Society for Industrial Security. Here are […]

Read More

Maximizing LTL Efficiency

How efficient are you at less-than-truckload (LTL) shipping? The solution to reducing freight costs and lag times could lie right at your own docks. Here are 10 tips to maximize your LTL efficiency from Jon Winkler, vice president, operations at Chicago-based J&A Freight Systems, a logistics solutions provider. 1. Accurate information is key. When obtaining […]

Read More

Hiring the Perfect Logistics Manager

“You can have the best sales and marketing groups, the finest accounting department, the latest technology, and top-notch customer service, but if you have a weak logistics team and you can’t get your product out and delivered on time to the right destination, you are dead in the water,” says William Conroy, president of Tyler […]

Read More

Making an Online Community Work

Online communities allow large groups to get together to solve problems and share information. Whether you are building a community, selecting technology, or simply a participant, these tips from Joseph Cothrell, vice president research, Participate.com, Chicago, Ill., can help you make the most of your online connection. 1. Define a business purpose and let the […]

Read More

Maximizing Intermodal Transportation

Intermodal transportation involves endless service options and possibilities. Navigating through this tangled web of choices can be mind-boggling, especially for newcomers. To simplify the process for new intermodal users and overwhelmed veterans, here are some suggestions from Paul Kromberg, principal of Rail and Intermodal Consulting Services, Springfield, Va. 1. Explore all supplier alternatives. Check out […]

Read More

Dealing With Customs

Many importers admit that understanding the U.S. Customs Service (USCS) process is like navigating a bureaucratic labyrinth. Here are some useful tips from importers familiar with USCS and its processes. 1. Know thy import specialist. In order to successfully negotiate the intricate parameters USCS uses to measure the import process, it is important to build […]

Read More

Negotiating With Your Railroads

Rail mergers and acquisitions have shaken up the industry, leaving behind a tangled web for consignees and shippers to navigate. So how do you avoid getting snagged in the web of management hierarchy and get the best bang for your buck when negotiating a shipping deal? It may take a little research and some homework, […]

Read More

Selecting a Warehouse Management System

You don’t have to be a software guru to select a good warehouse management system, but you better know what you want to accomplish. Don Dalton, president of Columbus, Ohio-based ScanData Systems. Inc., says companies need to clearly identify their operational requirements before asking a software company to provide a solution or respond to an […]

Read More

Your Dream Logistics Job: Make it Happen!

The new breed logistics professional has a four-year degree, analytical and technological skills, supply chain knowledge and line management leadership. There’s a shortage of these professionals at all levels, creating tremendous career opportunities. If you are looking to capitalize on this opportunity, you need to review your career aspirations and develop a game plan to […]

Read More