The 2017 freight and logistics marketplace is decidedly competitive. When considering market forces such as fuel prices and other energy expenses, ocean carrier industry consolidations, financial market turbulence and intermodal realignments, it’s evident that these factors are contributing to the ever-changing economic picture. Consider, how does your freight transportation business measure up? What changes will your business need to make in order to adapt?
Benchmarking, as a process, can help answer those questions. By taking a “scorecard “or snapshot view of your company’s key shipping cost performance metrics, a good benchmark analysis can highlight areas where adjustments can be made, or where more research should be focused.
Shippers, for example, can leverage solutions like U.S. Bank Freight Payment to derive information such as shipping costs per lane or accessorial charges per shipment from their freight payment and invoicing data. These measurements can then be compared to the same set of metrics determined for a selected peer group, such as shippers alike in size, industry or shipping volume.
These insights can then help gauge your shipping performance and ultimately make decisions that will bring positive results in an unsettled, highly competitive market. By identifying metrics that are below the line, or below what the peer group is doing, you can focus efforts on addressing the outliers or on further analysis to determine the cause. Subsequent benchmarks, perhaps on a quarterly basis, can help track the progress being made and continue to provide valuable insights to your business.
To learn more about where the freight transportation industry is headed and the ways benchmarking can provide visibility into how your business can face the challenges it’s presenting, watch the webinar U.S. Bank co-sponsored with Logistics Management, “2017 Rate Outlook: Where are freighttransportation rates headed?”