How Access to Transportation Data Improves the Shipper-Carrier Relationship
July 24, 2023
Strong relationships between shippers and carriers are crucial in today’s supply chain. That’s doubly true amid challenging economic and geopolitical environments when pressure to shave costs and gain efficiencies escalates.
According to Breakthrough’s recent survey of transportation leaders, over three quarters of shippers say cost is a top consideration when establishing a partnership with a carrier in the current environment. And despite the current market for linehaul rates being lower than normal with little volatility, more than 60% of shippers and carriers expect linehaul rates to remain higher than average over the next 12 months due to increased labor and equipment costs.
But despite facing intense pressure to reign in costs, most shippers aren’t ready to abandon longstanding carrier partnerships in favor of new and unknown entities. In fact, strengthening mutually beneficial transportation contracts with current partners is currently a key focus area for more than 70% of transportation leaders.
So, what’s the best way to go about this relationship building — and how can shippers continue to build trust and be transparent with carriers? Lean on data-driven insights. Transportation data, technology, and market knowledge providers play an essential role in improving shipper-carrier relationships by facilitating open communication and data-driven negotiations.
Build resilient partnerships based on trust and transparency
While the majority of shippers say cost is a top consideration when establishing carrier partnerships, many continue to negotiate based on incomplete or outdated information. When asked about their top hurdles to identifying suitable carriers, nearly half of shippers noted a lack of information about available carriers, and 43% said they lack information about average negotiated linehaul rates for their industry.
Transportation technology, data, and market knowledge providers can fill these gaps by supplying comprehensive insights that enable you to evaluate your current carriers and potential partners against multiple industry benchmarks, beyond just rates. With this transparency, you can maintain clear price, service, and carbon emissions expectations — and nurture relationships with carriers who align with your strategic priorities.
As you search for the right transportation management partner, prioritize providers that can demonstrate the following capabilities:
Benchmarks based on actual (and timely) transacted rates. Transportation management technology partners should have access to an ecosystem of data that encompasses actual transacted rates (as opposed to RFP estimates) at the lane level. Armed with this information, you can approach negotiations with current and potential carriers with a better understanding of fair pricing and market dynamics, facilitating more productive conversations with mutually beneficial outcomes.
Lane-level insights. With access to lane-level insights, you can view otherwise missed opportunities to manage cost and improve performance. This enables you to take immediate action to optimize operations while meeting with your carrier partners to develop short and long-term plans — strengthening your partnerships in the process.
Predictive analytics. Incorporating predictive analytics into your freight strategy enables you to forecast demand more accurately, maximize carrier capacity, and select the best carriers to align with your needs. In fact, a third of transportation leaders say actionable predictive analytics capabilities would help them achieve their transportation goals and overcome short-term challenges.
Bolster carrier partnerships with a strong foundation of data
The current macroeconomic climate is unpredictable and challenging. Navigating obstacles — while keeping costs in check — becomes more feasible when you have actionable data and trusted carrier partners ready to collaborate.
Begin fostering the trust and transparency required to take your current and future carrier partnerships to the next level. Schedule a demo of Capac-ID today.