Three Principles of Transportation Optimization

Clarifying Industry Misperceptions to Help Companies Maximize Their Transportation Management System Investment

By · June 21, 2011

Companies are increasingly considering their transportation and logistics operations to be a competitive differentiator. As such, demand for advanced transportation management systems is on the rise. According to Gartner, Inc., the transportation management system market should see double-digit growth in 2011 and a five-year compound annual growth rate of 9.4 percent1. With mounting pressure on businesses to contain costs, address capacity constraints, lower their carbon footprints and streamline movements, a flexible, agile and functionally rich transportation management system can help support their service goals. Yet for some companies, pinpointing the optimal solution can be nearly as complex as getting the right products to the right places at the right time and at the lowest cost. One factor adding confusion to the search is the manner in which vendors use — or overuse —the term optimization.

For more than 15 years, transportation solution vendors have been touting the optimization power that their solutions deliver to support more sophisticated planning, execution and settlement processes. Indeed, optimization techniques are proven to drive the vast majority of the business value realized from the use of transportation management solutions. However, not all optimization strategies are created equal and that’s where the confusion lies.

Vendors too often focus on just one function to optimize, which can lead to more harm than good. A simplified optimization approach may prompt a shipper to pick one carrier over another simply based on cost. A comprehensive approach may reveal that the selected carrier doesn’t have enough trucks or docks available to support the load in the first place.


Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Latest Whitepaper
The Retailer’s Atlas for Omnichannel Returns
Fueled by e-commerce, the new state of retail is truly an omnichannel one, and companies will flourish or flounder based on how well their supply chain can meet customer expectations.
Download Today!
From the November 2017 Logistics Management Magazine Issue
An inside look at how a large pharmaceutical firm transformed its vendor and supplier relationships into true, collaborative partnerships—and greatly strengthened its logistics and supply chain operations in the process.
34th Annual Quest for Quality Awards: 2017 Awards Dinner
Trucking Regulations: Washington U-Turns; States put hammer down
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Logistics Showcase: Rising to the same-day delivery challenge
Today’s delivery puzzles are very different than traditional DC to store or warehouse to DC puzzles. It’s not just the shorter time frame for delivery; the basic requirements are significantly different and more complex as well. In this session you'll learn how to address same day delivery challenges while also driving down costs and increasing customer satisfaction.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
2017 NASSTRAC Shipper of the Year: Mallinckrodt; Mastering and managing complexity
An inside look at how a large pharmaceutical firm transformed its vendor and supplier relationships...
2017 Alliance Awards: Recognizing outstanding supply chain partnerships
In an era where effective supply chain collaboration is both highly valued and elusive, Logistics...

26th Annual Study of Logistics and Transportation Trends: Transportation at Digital Speed
While a majority of companies strongly agree that transportation is a strategically important...
34th Annual Quest for Quality Awards: Winners Revealed
Which carriers, third-party logistics providers, and North American ports have crossed the service...