How to Choose Transportation Management Software
Transportation management software
Transportation management software (TMS) allows users to manage and optimize the day-to-day operations of their transportation fleets. The software helps reduce freight expenses, track real-time deliveries, improve customer service, and improve warehouse and supply chain efficiency. Shippers, distributors, fleet owners, wholesalers, and manufacturers are the typical customers for this type of product. Using the most up to date technology and software tools available, shipping and logistics companies are able to capitalize on opportunities to optimize their transportation fleets.
What are the key features of transportation management software?
Using the right software, businesses can conduct effective logistics management across the globe. Transportation management software is capable of planning, decision making, transportation execution, and transport measurement. Oracle TMS, SAP TMS, Voyager TMS, Mercury Gate TMS, and Manhattan Associates TMS are examples of modern-day transportation management software.
TMS is needed to control the increasing transportation costs of a business. Business owners who are delivering products may be planning ineffective routes, using less-than-capacity loads, expediting shipments or making other costly errors. TMS offers tools that allow businesses to plan routes, efficiently execute transportation operations, conduct freight audit, and optimize their fleets on a daily basis.
The key performance indicators (KPI’s) of TMS software include transit time, which enables the transportation company to calculate the time in hours and days between payment collection and delivery to customer; freight cost per pallet shipped; shipment traceability; mode selection which gives the capability to choose from combinations of air, rail, and road transport modes; on-time delivery; and on-time pickups.
The benefits and trends in TMS
Transportation management software delivers the following benefits to businesses: warehouse efficiency, cash flow management, inventory reduction, reduced freight expenses, advanced delivery capabilities, and increased supply chain efficiencies.
Trends in the TMS service sector include the outsourcing of freight data and payment management, combatting the truck driver delivery shortage which is a main issue in the logistics sector, and using the internet of things (IoT) to improve warehouse processes.
How to choose the right transportation management software
Businesses follow a tedious process as they decide between the benefits and features of various TMS. Key things to consider before purchasing a TMS is whether the TMS system meets immediate business plans so that implementation is seamless and ROI is quick; the line by line pricing of TMS; the billing capabilities of TMS; the integration ability of the TMS to align with other software that the customer already uses; real-time update ability; customizability of the TMS to fit a business’s environment; knowing what the business needs before looking for what TMS to purchase; and defining the scope and expectations of the TMS.According to Logistic Management’s 2014 Technology Usage Study, only 35 percent of shippers say that they are currently using a TMS.
Transportation management licensing, IP, and growth
TMS can be licensed by customers in a number of different arrangements. For instance, with a traditionally purchased license, customers have on-premises access to the software. Some TMS companies offer remote, SaaS, or Cloud which are hosted licenses. Other arrangements include hosted TMS free of licensing and on-premises hosted licensing.
With cloud-based subscription models, TMS adoption rates have grown from 10% to 15/20% for small-mid size shipping companies. TMS has developed a reputation for increasing the ROI of a shipping company by reducing its overall freight expenses by about 5 to 10%.
Several U.S. TMS companies have filed patents to protect the intellectual property of their software packages. The largest number of patents has been filed by companies such as IBM, SAP, Oracle, JDA, and Sterling; with each company holding over 15 patents protecting their software technology.
Reveal Management Services, Inc.
Reveal Management Services, Inc. offers technology solutions for its transportation clients. Reveal’s intuitive software platform is tailored to each transportation company’s individual needs and workflow. Reveal’s TMS is configured to have the most efficient and cost-effective transit system possible for clients. Key features of the software include improved fixed-route operations, efficiently managed driver bids useful for controlling costs, automation of daily processes and workflows, a demand response system, intelligent payroll tools, and a run-cutter application that analyzes historical trip information.
Reveal also offers non-emergency medical transportation technology which features an optimized scheduling and dispatch component, GPS functionality, enhanced visibility, streamlined billing, and versatile mobile applications.
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