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Transportation management systems (TMS) are designed to facilitate execution of deliveries across the supply chain through cutting-edge tools, including route optimization, freight estimate optimization, automated carrier selection, shipment consolidation, and load building. With the right TMS, firms can enjoy improved fleet performance and reduced supply chain and warehouse management expenditure. The right TMS is designed to ease transportation logistics, so that enterprises can make better planning for their shipment routes. With an influx of transportation management solutions available in the market, it can be overwhelming to make the right choice.
Here are a few mistakes to avoid when it comes to choosing a TMS.
Many vendors claim that their TMS handles integration, and some businesses fall into their trap and end up buying a system that can only export an excel spreadsheet and do nothing else. You need a tool that supports real-time data and automatically imports data as soon as there is a change in the routing information. An integrated system eliminates the need for manually importing data, ensuring that the record is always up to date and accurate.
Always look for a well-integrated system that can seamlessly integrate with your existing internal systems, including warehouse management, order management, and ERP system.
2. Vendor reputation
When it comes to choosing transportation management solution, make sure you research more about the vendor’s reputation and stability probability. You want to invest in a solution that can provide you continued support for years to come. Some enterprises ignore this aspect and end up allying with a vendor who enjoys no financial stability. Oftentimes, such vendors are lost in darkness, which means lack of support for the customer in times of need.
When you start shopping for a transportation management system, look for vendors that have a loyal and satisfied customer base. Before entering into an agreement with a provider, make sure they enjoy a good reputation and guarantee long-term support.
While an easy-to-use TMS takes away stress, a complicated system adds to your list of worries and frustration. When assessing a TMS, make sure you go for a test drive to ensure you land in a system that is easy to use and implement. Try to find if the screen of the TMS is easy to navigate. Is your non-technical staff able to assess and navigate through the system or it is too complex for them to sail through to the next page?
Assess the tool for its accessibility and usability to avoid frustration later. Choosing a complex system can only add to your frustration and require your staff to undergo comprehensive training so as to be able to use the system effectively.
4. Overkill or undersized
Some enterprises end up choosing transportation management system that is either too large or too small for their organization. To avoid doing so, it is important to evaluate your logistics needs and geographies to support. What are the modes required? Does the solution cater to your unique industry standards?
If you buy a solution that is too large for you to manage, most of its features would be redundant and only add complexity and cost. On the other hand, choosing an undersized solution will be a grave mistake, as it will minimize use and have no long-term value.
Do your research well and look for TMS vendors who specialize in offering services to your industry. Of course, you don’t want to invest in a vendor that specializes only in a single mode and cannot do well outside its niche. Align your exact business transportation needs with the capabilities promised by the system.
5. Scalability, flexibility & reliability
When you plan to choose transportation management solution, make sure you look for one that is reliable, flexible, and scalable. Since TMS is a mission-critical application, reliability and scalability of the software is important. Measure the software’s capabilities to ensure they integrate well within your current infrastructure and that the system is scalable to grow with your growing needs.
Try to find if the software needs additional improvements to meet the performance level you desire. Is there a documented proof of the software’s reliability and scalability? Businesses that ignore this important aspect often have to deal with frustrations later when their business needs amplify.
Does your company engage in global trade? If so, look for a solution that includes functionality for international logistics!
Choosing the right transportation management system without adequate guidance can be an overly complex job. If you are looking for the right TMS, come in touch with ITQlick. Our experts are here to help clients find the best tools that can add more efficiency to your business.