Seems simple, pick up here and deliver there. Unfortunately, in our complex logistics supply chain industry there are many other factors that play a role in how quickly and efficiently your shipment makes it to its end destination. Depending on the mode of transportation there are different methods of tracking. With today’s technology and transportation requirements, Truckload and Expedite are a much more black and white process. Carriers are required to equip containers with logging technology that not only mandates the hours a driver can work in a given workday but also tracks the container itself. MacroPoint technology automatically pins from a driver talking device every 20 minutes to show where he or she is physically located. This helps shippers and receivers tremendously as they have an exact snapshot on how ahead or behind of schedule the shipment in transit may be. LTL shipping while being far less costly than a dedicated truck comes with its own series of challenges, one of those being tracking transparency. Below is a breakdown on exactly how a shipment traveling cross country would look like.
LTL (Less Than Truckload) – The typical journey of an LTL shipment is:
Picks up at origin
Arrives at carrier origin terminal where it is offloaded on origin dock
Freight is reloaded into a truck container heading towards the direction of the destination, there are typically at least 2-3 stop points along the way.
Arrives at 1st relay terminal where it is offloaded on dock or transloaded into a new truck headed towards the direction of the destination.
Arrives at 2nd relay terminal where it is offloaded on dock or transloaded into a new truck headed towards the direction of the destination.
Arrives at destination terminal where it is offloaded on the dock and reloaded into final delivering truck for the next day.
Delivering truck arrives and unloads at destination.
As shown above, there are many check points and hands moving the freight, the more hands the more room for error. This makes it vital to have a pulse on where your freight is each and every morning and throughout the day. A transportation brokerage can make it seamless if shipping amongst various carriers as long as that brokerage is dedicated into providing accurate details and frequently tracking throughout the route. Not only does this empower companies to update their customers, but it helps prevent a problem before it occurs or solve an issue that has transpired.