Shippers Are Changing The Way They do Business to Cope With The Truck Shortage
Hopefully by now, most companies understand the severity of the current truck shortage, as well as the factors that have led up to it. Most of our shippers do understand, and have already begun taking steps to help their business and their customers and suppliers change their habits and procedures in order to cope. All America Transportation, Inc. is recommending to all of our customers, THEIR customers, and their suppliers to do the following:
First and foremost, educate everyone, not just your employees, but also your customers and suppliers, about what is going on in the trucking industry. Gone are the days when you can call your transportation service provider at 3 pm and still get a truck in your door that afternoon.
Establish procedures so that your customer service reps can give everyone a “heads up” if they believe an order will be forthcoming. Time is of the essence and if you give our people lead time, we have a better chance of getting a truck under the load and delivering the load to your customer on their due date.
Learn to be flexible. Can your shipment move on a dry van OR a reefer? It might be a little more work to load it on a reefer trailer, but it will open up more options for you. Can it pick up on Monday OR Tuesday? Review your loading hours. Do your people come in early and leave at 2 pm? Early cut-off times eliminate many possible trucks. Perhaps you can extend your loading hours by staggering your employees’ schedules, i.e. have one person start at 6 am and go home at 2 pm and the other shipping person come in at 10 am and go home at 6 pm. With longer loading hours, your load will be more attractive to carriers and drivers than others.
If you really think about it, a little flexibility and communication can not only help your business run smoother, but it could also save you hundreds, or even thousands of dollars in freight costs, eliminating those costly last minute “expedited” shipments.