What Are the Features and Benefits of LTL Software?
Published on Oct 31, 2019
Technology almost nearly dictates the efficiency of many of today’s supply chain operations.
Whether it’s cloud-based networking, route optimization software, or automated shipping notifications, shippers, suppliers, and carriers all depend on technology. And yes, it may seem to be a little more than invasive, but logistics technology helps tremendously to plan, optimize, and fine-tune a full-scale supply chain.
For LTL carriers, advances in technology along with a renewed dedication to better serve customers has created LTL software that is easier than ever to access, use, and customize. Within the scope of LTL software falls specific platforms. These generally include TMS, order processing and fulfillment solutions, along with various APIs to keep everything connected and running smoothly.
Most LTL software can either be a standalone platform or offered as Software as a Service (SaaS). In either case, it can be configured with tools and apps that power a wide range of shipping tasks. These LTL freight management solutions provide access to load planning, route optimization, dispatch and bill management tools all from one, ideally, user-friendly platform.
While there are multiple LTL software systems on the market, each with unique features and benefits, there are some general attributes that they all possess. In this blog post, we will outline and explain the features and benefits that LTL software provides.
What are the Main Features of LTL Software?
Every LTL software solution is unique.
Some are custom configured for individual companies while others are generic systems that are loaded with tools and solutions designed for carriers of all size and scope. Nevertheless, there are several tools, apps, and features of most, if not all, LTL software that helps to improve the efficiency of their operations.
Here are a few of the most common:
The leading feature used with LTL software systems is optimizing pickup and delivery routes of LTL carriers. This tool considers multiple factors including types of roads, traffic, construction, fuel costs, and more in an effort to improve LTL routes based on the specific metrics.
If an LTL carrier is focused on improving stops per hour, the route optimization platform can be configured to set up routes that achieve these goals. For carriers that are looking to improve delivery service to customers, the LTL software can be set up to achieve those goals, as well.
Dispatch Planning and Management
Another powerful tool included in most of these platforms is that of dispatch planning and management.
This area of focus provides better lines of communication between dispatch offices, order processing, and drivers.
LTL carriers can also set up induvial user accounts, with tools specific to their role.
Real-Time Tracking and Field Data Capture
Tracking systems are generally implemented into most modern LTL software solutions in order to provide carriers with real-time tracking of their trucks.
Not only does this provide additional data that can help fine-tune route efficiency, but it also provides a stream of data to put customer's minds at ease while they await their package.
Carrier-driven software solutions also expedite the process of receiving and processing new customer orders.
When a customer schedules a delivery, that information can be pushed out to the carrier via desktop notifications, SMS or email. Likewise, updates on new pickups can be forwarded and dispatched to drivers who may already be on the road. This reduces the need to send out a new route or delay a shipment. Most importantly, it allows for quick order processing which in-turn means faster shipping and a memorable experience for your customers.
What are Some Benefits of LTL Software?
It’s often assumed that LTL software systems are simply used to improve routing. While this is indeed something that any good logistics software should provide right out of the box, it isn't the only thing it does.
In fact, here a few of the best benefits that modern LTL solutions offer:
Inbound and Outbound Logistics Planning
Imagine having the ability to use one software platform for all areas of your carrier business.
Well, that’s generally what LTL software systems provide. They are configured with tools, apps, and reporting systems that help LTL carriers plan their inbound and outbound operations.
Staying on top of fleet management tasks is a challenge for most carriers. These software solutions are packed with fleet management tools that permit carriers to monitor a variety of things.
Most often, this includes vehicle maintenance schedules, insurance information, registration, and even driver performance.
Customs Forms and Compliance Processing
Additionally, these solutions can often be configured with cross-border customs declaration paperwork and documentation. Forms can be uploaded to the cloud and sent to customers via email. They can then even be forwarded to customs departments of cross-border partners all from a single program.
LTL software solutions are powerful and highly diverse programs that help carriers of all sizes improve their supply chain operations.
The best tool for choosing the right LTL software system is consulting with a professional 3PL company like Redwood Logistics.
We’ve worked with carriers big and small to configure customized LTL software platforms. We provide easy to navigate and completely scalable solutions that allow carriers to expand the platform as their business grows.
If you have any questions about LTL software solutions, contact the team at Redwood Logistics.