- THE MAGAZINE
When you think of supply chain technology providers, drayage probably doesn’t jump to the front of your mind, but perhaps it should.
Drayage brokers have evolved into effective technology partners offering state-of-the-art platforms that can be fully integrated with existing contract management and operating systems or used as stand-alone solutions. Either application saves customers time and money, while avoiding many of the risks and liabilities associated with drayage.
This new technology-driven approach to drayage is the result of a growing understanding and appreciation among shippers of the drayage broker concept and how it can be leveraged to improve operational efficiency and reduce risk, coupled with the availability of technology to support the model. Other drivers include corporate constraints on resources forcing companies to do more with less and the government’s stricter standards for monitoring and compliance - to name just two.
Most companies today only look at the rates they pay their providers when measuring drayage spend. This leaves unmeasured the time and effort that goes into managing drayage moves, and those costs can be significant. If closely evaluated, managing a complicated drayage move end to end could easily be found to take up to two hours.
Admittedly, most moves are less complicated and require less time. But when you have an unexpected situation, such as volume that exceeds your providers’ capacity — even if the move is in a familiar area with a known vendor — that clock ticks away and eats into your profits.
Drayage brokers provide an effective alternative that can save operational time and cost and save you headaches. And since many brokerage solutions are free to use, you can employ them, at a minimum, when they make sense both operationally and financially for your situation.
Additionally, brokers can assist shippers in finding fully insured and compliant drayage providers anywhere in the US, which is particularly important in today’s environment. When shippers book through a broker they often are doubly protected when brokers carry overarching liability insurance to give them added peace of mind should anything go wrong. Plus, new requirements under FMCSA MAP-21 require all drayage brokers to carry a surety bond for a minimum of $75,000.
In summary, web-based drayage management solutions are cost-effective and time-saving applications that can minimize the risk associated with drayage moves. So while drayage may not be the first place you look for technology providers, it just might become the best place — assuming you really are looking to improve your operations, minimize your risk and enhance your bottom line!