Everything you need to know about (TMS)Transportation Management Systems
You need a transportation management system (TMS) to keep your business moving. A TMS is a critical software that helps businesses manage and optimise their transportation operations.
It can be used to plan and execute shipments, track and monitor freight, and manage driver compliance.
A TMS can help you improve your shipping process in several ways. For example, it can help you find the most efficient route for your shipments, track your freight in real-time, and automate billing and invoicing.
It can also help you manage driver compliance by providing electronic logging (ELD) and driver performance tracking features.
In short, a TMS can help you streamline your shipping process and make it more efficient and effective. If you’re thinking of implementing a TMS into your business, there are a few things you need to know.
This guide will give you information about transportation management systems, their key features, and how to pick the right one for your business.
What are the Main key Features of a Transportation Management System?
There are features that all transportation management systems offer. These include:
- Routing and Shipping Optimisation: A TMS can help you find the most efficient routes for your shipments, taking into account time, distance, traffic, and weather.
- Shipment Tracking: A TMS can provide real-time tracking of your shipments, so you always know where your freight is.
- Automated Billing and Invoicing: A TMS can automate the billing and invoicing process, so you don’t have to worry about it.
- Driver Compliance: A TMS can help you manage driver compliance by providing electronic logging (ELD) and driver performance tracking features.
- Improved Efficiency: A TMS can help you improve the efficiency of your shipping process by optimising routes.
- Improved Customer Satisfaction: A TMS can help you improve customer satisfaction by providing real-time tracking of shipments.
- Reduced Costs: A TMS can help you reduce costs by finding the most efficient routes for your shipments.
How Can You Choose the Right Transportation Management System for Your Company?
When choosing a transportation management system for your business, there are a few things you need to consider. These include:
- Your Business Needs: You need to consider your specific business needs. What do you need the TMS to do? What features are you looking for?
- Your Budget: You need to consider your budget. TMS software can vary widely in price, so you need to make sure you choose a system within your price range.
- Your IT Infrastructure: Thirdly, you need to consider your IT infrastructure. Does your business have the necessary IT infrastructure to support a TMS?
Once you’ve considered these factors, you’ll be better positioned to choose the right transportation management system for your business.
What KPIs Should You Monitor With Your TMS System?
There are a few key performance indicators (KPIs) that you should monitor with your TMS system. These include:
- Shipping costs
- Delivery time
- Order accuracy
- Customer satisfaction
- Driver compliance
- Full Efficiency
- Loading and Unloading Times
- Accurate Tracking
- Identify and correct errors
These are a few of the KPIs you should monitor with your transportation management system. By tracking these KPIs, you’ll be able to see if your TMS is helping you improve your shipping process.
What are the Different Types of Transportation Management Systems?
There are a few different types of transportation management systems. These include:
- On-Premise TMS: An on-premise TMS is installed on your company’s servers. It is usually more expensive than other types of TMS, but it offers more flexibility and control.>
- Cloud-Based TMS: A cloud-based TMS is hosted on the vendor’s servers. It’s usually less expensive than an on-premise TMS, but it offers less flexibility and control.
- Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) TMS: A SaaS TMS is a cloud-based TMS that’s offered on a subscription basis. It’s usually less expensive than an on-premise TMS, but it provides less flexibility and control.
Now that you know a little more about transportation management systems, you’ll be better positioned to make an informed decision.
Which Type of TMS is Right for Your Business?
The type of TMS right for your business depends on a few factors. These include:
- Your Budget: If you are limited by budget, you may want to consider a cloud-based TMS or a SaaS TMS.
- Your IT Infrastructure: If you have a robust IT infrastructure, you may want to consider an on-premise TMS.
- Your Shipping Volume: If you ship a high volume of orders, you may want to consider an on-premise TMS.
- Your Shipping Complexity: If your shipping process is complex, you may want to consider an on-premise TMS.
- Your Company’s Size: If your company is large, you may want to consider an on-premise TMS.
What are the Challenges of Using a Transportation Management System?
There are a few challenges that you may face when using a transportation management system. These include:
- Complexity: TMS software can be complex, and it may take some time to get used to it.
- Cost: TMS software can be expensive, so you need to choose a system that’s within your budget.
- IT Infrastructure: You need to have the necessary IT infrastructure to support a TMS.
What are the Trends in Transportation Management Systems?
You should be aware of a few trends in transportation management systems. These include:
- Cloud-Based TMS: More and more TMS software is offered as a cloud-based solution. This means that the software is hosted on the vendor’s servers, and you access it via the internet.
- Mobile TMS: Mobile TMS software is becoming more popular as it allows you to access your TMS from a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet.
- Social Media Integration: Some TMS software is now being integrated with social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook. This allows you to track shipments and receive updates via social media.
What are the Future Trends in Transportation Management Systems?
The future trends in transportation management systems include:
- More Focus on Analytics: TMS software is becoming more focused on analytics as businesses look to improve their shipping process.
- More Integration With Other Software: TMS software is being integrated with other software such as enterprise resource planning (ERP) and accounting software.
- More Cloud-Based Solutions: More TMS software is being offered as a cloud-based solution.
- More Mobile Solutions: Mobile TMS software is becoming more popular as it allows businesses to access their TMS from a mobile device.
A transportation management system can bring many benefits to a business. However, it is crucial to choose the right one for your company and monitor key performance indicators to make sure the system is working optimally.
There are many challenges associated with implementing and using a TMS, but these can be overcome with careful planning and execution. The trend in transportation management systems appears to be moving towards more cloud-based solutions, which offer greater flexibility and scalability.
We can expect more innovative features from transportation management systems with the ever-changing technology landscape.