Logistics Performance Management Challenge #2: Will My Cargo Be Delivered on Time?
This is the second article in our series on Logistics Performance Management (LPM) and how to overcome challenges in the supply chain. This blog discusses the importance of on-time deliveries. The first article discussed how to know where your cargo is at any time.
A single late shipment can result in a major business disruption for your company – and leave you facing serious ramifications. When you can’t keep a customer commitment because one of your vendors didn’t deliver a crucial item on time, you may lose future business, be fined for late deliveries or even become known as an unreliable vendor.
Critical insight before you need it
Because you’re a company that is reliant on time-sensitive cargo deliveries, it’s important to have access to complete visibility into your cargo shipments at all times. For instance, if you are a manufacturer waiting for packaging materials or essential parts, or on an expensive IT installation that is dependent on an equipment delivery, the arrival time of a shipment is critical.
Cost-effective, sensor-based real-time cargo tracking can provide you with crucial, up-to-the-minute worldwide views of where your cargo is right now. It can also give you proactive alerts and detailed insights so you can have all the intelligence you need to make critical decisions when a shipment is delayed or disrupted.
Manage expectations in real time
With continuous cargo monitoring via real-time sensor technology, you can take charge of delivery disruptions and proactively manage the impact of any missed or late shipments. Sensor-based technology can help you stay on top of a shipment every step of the way, from origin to final destination. You can literally have up-to-the-moment insights into your complete supply chain, with need-to-know, real-time alerts on shipments that might compromise your customer promises.
This innovative technology allows you to:
- Get real-time visibility at every link in the supply chain for greater control.
- Monitor shipments and manage delays in real-time while your cargo is in transit.
- Provide proactive updates to internal personnel and customers before disruptions result in costly impacts and untimely consequences.
- Address supply chain interruptions with your shippers to improve on-time delivery and drive supply chain optimization.
- Improve your company’s overall logistics performance with greater speed, efficiency and customer service for every shipment.
What to look for in cargo tracking sensors
Not all tracking devices will provide you with the information you need to have complete visibility into your cargo shipments while they are in transit. You’ll want to find a real-time sensor program that gives you the flexibility to:
- Deploy tracking quickly and easily. Look for sensors that are applied right on your cargo at distribution centers, contract manufacturing sites and third-party logistics (3PL) locations—much like a label would be applied during the packing or staging process. Because sensors travel with your cargo, rather than on the shipper’s equipment, you’ll have insights throughout the entire journey. You’ll want a program that requires no capital expense, ongoing maintenance or configuration— and sensors that can be responsibly disposed of or recycled after use.
- Get automated alerts for fast decision making. It’s also important to have a program that gives you and your customers automated real-time location alerts and reporting on demand, along with visibility across each carrier or mode of transport—all without the need for any integration with other systems. This level of visibility allows you to make intelligent decisions with your customers in the moment—not after the fact—so you can address delivery disruptions early on and take action before there is a costly impact.
- Track your cargo on real-time maps. In addition to real-time alerts, look for a solution that provides you with access to your cargo’s location at any time via a secure, web-based tracking and monitoring platform. An interactive map allows you to identify where your cargo is at any given moment, making it easy for you to make alternative plans when there are delays.
- Maximize the power of your data. You’ll also want to find a program that allows you to integrate your shipping data with your transportation management, enterprise resource planning or other logistics systems via API integrations. This will give you a holistic view of the timely and accurate information you need to effectively manage the shipment segment of your supply chain.
- Find the weak spots in your supply chain. You can’t correct problems that you are unaware of, and this is especially true with complex shipments that use multiple shipping partners or different transport modes. With the right program, you’ll have the data and the tools you need to pinpoint the root cause of shipping delays, interruptions and performance issues.