If we learned one lesson over nearly three years of unprecedented industry interruptions since the beginning of the pandemic, it’s that supply chain stability is never entirely predictable. The wisest of shipping and logistics professionals will always remain agile and prepared for the worst-case scenario—even when supply chain conditions are ideal. Proper preparedness and visibility into a company’s global supply chain can create buoyancy when waters get rough.
For instance, throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve witnessed supply chain disruptions from staffing shortages, cyber-attacks, material shortages, a carrier ship stuck in a critical worldwide port, and countless other snags that have slowed or impacted the stability of the global supply chain.
While no one solution can account for or prevent these disruptions, ensuring that you have complete, real-time transportation visibility for your shipments can vastly improve your shipping stability, speeds, procurement, and brokerage abilities. But perhaps most importantly—your ability to give accurate time and expense forecasts to your clients and stakeholders to maintain high levels of customer satisfaction.
In the modern era of shipping, however, we’re lucky to have technological tools like an intelligent Transportation Management System (TMS) to provide global and real-time transportation visibility so that logistics professionals always know where their shipments are at any time. This visibility access expedites shipping and saves companies time, money, labor, and headaches.
What is Transportation Visibility?
When discussing transportation visibility concerning shipping and logistics, we’re referring to the exchange of information between individuals and technological platforms regarding the current, projected, and past locations of freight from origination to delivery. Modern, real-time transportation visibility platforms provide updates on the condition and quantities of cargo and offer route optimization and analytical insights into better procurement and brokerage practices.
Modern TMS tools eliminate antiquated and less efficient pen-and-paper methods of freight tracking, which don’t allow for real-time transportation visibility, especially on the global intermodal scale required by many chemical logistics operations. Accurate freight pinpointing is a modern amenity that consumers expect in almost every industry, and billion-dollar chemical companies are no exception.
How do Transportation Visibility Platforms Improve Supply Chains?
According to IBM Insights with Watson, less than 10% of supply chain data is ever used, and 87% of surveyed Chief Supply Chain Officers said it’s difficult to predict and proactively manage disruptions. Implementing a TMS with real-time transportation visibility will alleviate potential supply chain interruptions by granting more significant control over your chemical shipments by accurately locating your freight at any time and place. When shipping volatile, radioactive, or biohazardous chemical materials, many are climate controlled and must be delivered within a particular window. With accurate freight transportation visibility, shippers can prepare for and minimize supply chain strains as they arise.
For example, suppose a shipment falls outside the allotted timeframe to safely deliver a usable chemical product due to improper temperature control, natural disasters, physical damage, misplaced containers, or any other disruption that would fail to deliver a product as expected by customers. In this case, supply chain managers or freight forwarders can cancel, re-route, reorder, and act quickly to recoup any losses from the failed shipment while keeping their clients informed of the situation in real time.
Real-World Transportation Visibility Effectiveness
Perhaps the most recent high-profile case where supply chain strains needed to be overcome globally was with the initial shipments of the COVID-19 vaccine. The mRNA vaccines must be kept at subzero temperatures to ensure safe and usable delivery to health systems and their patients. Real-time transportation visibility helped track and monitor the vaccine vials and the temperature of their containment systems. This crucial capability helped expedite and ensure the safe and efficient distribution of the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine worldwide when labor shortages and disruptions of almost every kind disrupted the global supply chain.
Choose an Industry-leading Real-Time Transportation Visibility Platform
With real-time transportation visibility, supply chain interruptions are more effectively overcome through enhanced tracking, data collection, and cost and route-optimizing abilities. Industry-leading intelligent technology, like CLX TMS, provides visibility into all modes of transportation, including truckload, rail, maritime, and air. With greater visibility, your supply chain becomes resilient, secure, and flexible, leading to saved costs, increased ROI, capacity, and higher customer satisfaction rates—all of which make supply chain interruptions irrelevant for a properly prepared logistics program.
Learn more about Clx Logistics’ ability to illuminate your supply chain and allow for proper preparation against supply chain disruptions in our free eBook, Optimizing Chemical Industry Supply Chains with Advanced Transportation Visibility.
If you’re ready to begin optimizing your supply chain with enhanced real-time visibility into your entire supply chain, contact us today to partner with CLX Logistics.
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