How to Future-Proof  Your Supply Chain from Freight Embargoes

How to Future-Proof  Your  Supply Chain from Freight Embargoes

With CarrierConnect XL and transit service alerts, shippers can make better decisions during a freight embargo to mitigate disruptions in less-than-truckload service.

Freight embargoes have become more common in recent years as the pandemic upended the supply chain world and led to temporary less-than-truckload (LTL) service outages. Freight embargoes are imposed by carriers in a range of forms—timeframe, geographic region, or specific freight characteristics, just to name a few.

Carriers can also activate embargoes at their discretion, but it’s often necessary to impose an embargo to balance capacity during times of peak demand. That’s why it’s crucial to engage technology that provides comprehensive carrier information.

Freight embargoes are common when disruptions such as tight carrier capacity, severe weather, terminal repair or closure, geographic events, and other unforeseen incidents occur. Planned embargoes can be less disruptive if shippers know they are coming versus unplanned embargoes that don’t allow time for advanced planning.

Unplanned Freight Embargoes

The impacts of unplanned freight embargoes usually can’t be avoided. Sudden and unexpected embargoes force the supply chain to temporarily adjust to the strain on LTL carrier resources. Using logistics technology can bring much-needed visibility to the supply chain and help drive better decision-making during these challenging times.

Planned Freight Embargoes

In comparison, planned freight embargoes, such as those imposed during peak season, can be more easily navigated. The duration of planned freight embargoes is typically stated up front, though carriers can extend it if capacity hasn’t eased sufficiently. Knowing how long an embargo will continue helps shippers weather the disruption better—and communicate with their customers in advance.

Planned freight embargoes give shippers time to explore other lanes and understand the costs associated with newfound carriers. Just like unplanned embargoes, planned embargoes are aided by access to technology that can harness this information and make it visible to shippers.

Transit Alerts Aid Decision-Making

Having to manually search for carrier transit times and service details during a freight embargo is a time-consuming, frustrating, and arduous process. Access to accurate, comprehensive, up-to-date LTL transit details is invaluable. SMC³’s CarrierConnect® XL delivers this data, providing LTL transit times and LTL carrier service detail from more than 300 leading national, super-regional, and regional carriers across North America.

If a carrier indicates they must shut down in an area for terminal maintenance and other repairs, an alert goes out. Shippers are also alerted to terminal closures that aren’t due to repairs. Even large events occurring in certain geographic areas—Mardi Gras, for instance—will trigger an alert. A catch-all alert is sent for embargoes that don’t fall into the other categories.

Up-to-Date Carrier Details

With CarrierConnect XL and transit service alerts, shippers can future-proof their supply chains. This technology empowers carriers to manage embargoes and custom messaging for shippers at the terminal, city, or postal code level. It also allows carriers to adjust pickup dates and calculate estimated delivery dates based on optional embargo data.

The technology helps shippers make the most accurate routing decisions during a freight embargo. With CarrierConnect XL 3.0, dynamically updated carrier information can be accessed through either RESTful APIs or SOAP API messaging. When combined with SMC³’s RateWare® XL technology, CarrierConnect integrates carrier-specific points of service and transit times with rates to provide a holistic view of LTL pricing, transit times, and carrier services.