Freight Brokerage Solutions When You Need a Carrier Now

Freight brokers are the unseen heroes of the transportation and logistics world. They’re the middleman between shippers and carriers and ensure shipment processes go smoothly. Freight brokerage services include a wide range of features and benefits that shippers wouldn’t otherwise have access to, chiefly an expansive network of trusted and dependable freight carriers.

Shippers frequently underestimate the value of freight brokers, but time and again, freight brokers prove their worth by saving shippers substantial time and money. Freight brokers use their carrier connections to negotiate low transportation rates and handle your freight safely between shippers and carriers. And critically, when challenges arise and you need a carrier immediately, freight brokers have various solutions available to ensure your freight gets to its destination intact as quickly and cost-effectively as possible.

Let’s look at the solutions freight brokers can offer when you need a carrier now.

Last-Minute Shipments

When a carrier backs out of a contract at the last minute, freight brokers can access a broader range of carriers to execute fast, last-minute shipments. With access to real-time trucking and capacity data and a global network of carriers, freight brokers are indispensable in ensuring those urgent last-minute shipments make it to their destination on time. Freight brokers thoroughly vet all their carriers by reviewing safety ratings, HAZMAT certifications, and insurance coverage. They also accommodate special modes like dry van, refrigerated, and temperature-controlled solutions, all on short notice.

Specialized Transportation Expertise

Different types of freight must follow different rules and regulations surrounding packaging, modes of transport, border crossings, and more. For example, when shipping something like bulk liquid chemical, it’s essential to work with a freight broker who knows the industry inside and out to achieve the best prices and prompt, professional service. When choosing a freight broker for their specialization and expertise, look for one that industry manufacturers and shippers trust and has a history of excellence among their clients. They also need robust technologies to manage issues, communicate with parties seamlessly, and facilitate timely in-transit tracking, reporting, updates, and confirmations. The right freight brokerage experience mixed with the right technologies for specialized industries are key to ensuring fast, on-time delivery of your goods.

Save Time in the Face of Transportation Challenges

From global pandemics to clogged canals to geopolitical conflicts, you never know what kinds of supply chain challenges, slowdowns, and delays will arrive, when they’ll show up, or how long they’ll last. Amid all these issues, when you need a product shipped ASAP, freight brokers can help filter through the noise to find new options. Using their connections with a wide range of trustworthy and experienced carriers, freight brokers take all the work out of finding and organizing a transportation network so you can stay on track and focus on more crucial elements of your business.

Getting Started with the Right Freight Broker

There are a lot of freight brokers to choose from, but few have the complete mix of experience, expertise, technology, and specialization as CLX Logistics. Our award-winning freight brokerage team connects carriers with available capacity to clients who need to support shipments now. We provide vital freight brokerage services for businesses of all sizes across the US in a wide range of industries with unmatched specialization in chemical transportation solutions.

Need to get started with freight brokerage services? We’re ready to help. Contact CLX Logistics today.

Answering Common Chemical Rail Transportation Services Questions

Almost every industry has been affected by supply chain issues in recent times. With causes ranging from oversized ships clogging major maritime ports to the unprecedented influx of vessels waiting to be unloaded around the world, there are many factors affecting these recent supply chain strains.

However, there are different options for shipping in today’s modern world that can alleviate or solve supply chain shortages for many companies. While most individuals and supply chain managers may think of air or maritime shipping as the most effective and efficient transportation methods, another competitor may be just as, if not more effective and practical.

While not as flashy as its challengers, rail transportation services are a tried-and-true tactic that has been around since the birth of industry itself and still holds its own as a reliable, predictable, cost-friendly, and attractive shipping option for many companies and industries, especially chemical manufacturing.

We’ll be discussing how railway logistics can help solve the needs of the chemical transportation industry by reviewing our case study where we helped improve the transportation of chemicals from the southern part of the US to the Northeast.

Read the full case study, Big Fish in a Bigger Pond: Upgrading a Chemical Supply Chain the Right Way, here:


Is Rail Shipping on the Outs?

Let’s cut right to the chase: not at all. According to the US Department of Transportation, the rail freight network is an 80-billion-dollar industry with around 140,000 route miles of track, accounting for approximately 28% of all freight movement within the US! Not only that, but the “US freight rail network is widely considered the largest, safest, and most cost-efficient freight system in the world.”

Transportation experts agree that rail transportation services are only poised to grow in appeal and practicality for domestic suppliers due to increased urban congestion, road traffic, fuel costs, and other impediments that slow down shipping speeds.

Increased rail freight transportation has additional benefits such as fewer highway fatalities, lower fuel consumption and logistical costs, and even lower maintenance costs for public infrastructure like roads, highways, and bridges. These are only some of the advantages rail transportation services can have for companies and the public alike.

What Are the Advantages of Rail Shipping?

The clearest advantage of shipping bulk items using rail transportation services is cost savings. When bulk shipping items such as chemicals is an option, the cost savings potentials are huge for several reasons. First, trains are much more fuel-efficient than other methods of shipping. In fact, a single gallon of diesel fuel can move one ton of freight 470 miles. Additionally (and perhaps unknown to many), US freight railroads are privately owned and independent of public infrastructure maintenance costs. This privately-owned network comprises seven Class I railroads and many smaller regional and local railroads. These private companies continually invest in the quality and efficiency of their freight rail systems, with a high percentage of revenue going towards maintenance and network expansion to constantly improve their rail transportation services and make shipping safer and more efficient.

Is Rail Transportation Safe for Shipping Chemicals?

Rail transportation services are incredibly safe for chemical shipment. The Association of American Railroads (AAR) states, “99.99% of all hazmat moved by rail reaches its destination without a release caused by a train accident.” Hazmat accident rates have even decreased by 64% since 2000 due to the collaboration of private freight companies, customers, government agencies, and all other involved parties in investing money and labor into ensuring safer practices for hazmat rail transportation services, with the ultimate goal of one day being 100% accident-free.

Examples can be seen in more properly trained staff and the increased use and advancement of technology that monitors, inspects, and tracks rail equipment and freight. Additionally, USDOT updated regulations in 2015 that made rail cars that carry hazmat safer and structurally tougher, even in the case of an accident or derailment, as well as phasing out older cars that were no longer adequately safe for hazmat transportation.

Is a Rail Management Software Necessary for Chemical Railway Shipping?

Absolutely. Rail shipping in a modern context can only be efficiently managed through reliable Rail Management Software (RMS). Utilizing this software helps create reliable data and ensures companies can more efficiently track shipments, railcar contents, destinations, shipping times, and so on. This information can help make more data-driven decisions that ultimately save time and money.

Luckily CLX has an RMS built into our proprietary Transportation Management System (TMS). Utilizing our technology helps companies save time and money and makes all their shipping services more lucrative and efficient overall through the increased awareness, management, and ease of use of real-time shipping data like railcar tracking and industry-leading fleet analytics.

How Else Can CLX Improve Chemical Rail Shipping?

Not only does CLX provide a TMS and RMS, but we also maintain strong, established relationships with several Class I rail companies to provide chemical shippers with access to more routes than other competitors, ensuring we can clear any chokepoints or hurdles that could delay shipments. Our well-established relationships can also help lower the rates of railcars and streamline contract renewals. We also provide complete railcar maintenance and management solutions and complete invoice auditing to ensure you’re paying your expenses as planned and eliminating extraneous costs at every opportunity.

As you can see, shipping with railway logistics is more relevant and practical than ever and can be an incredibly safe and efficient shipping method for chemical suppliers. Even better, CLX is here to support you throughout the entire journey with our unparalleled experts and tools to help manage your rail needs. For a more detailed look at how we’ve helped reduce costs for a company shipping titanium dioxide (TiO2), read our full case study, Big Fish in a Bigger Pond: Upgrading a Chemical Supply Chain the Right Way.

If you have more questions or are ready to see how CLX can improve your chemical shipping processes, contact us today, and let’s get started.

Air Freight Delivery Services Help Solve Supply Chain Woes

As lockdowns continue to affect supply chains worldwide, demand has skyrocketed in every industry. Supply chains that experienced disruptions during the global health crisis still face enormous challenges and struggle to bounce back. This situation has proven chaotic for manufacturers and distributors who cannot produce or supply the same quantities of goods as in their pre-pandemic state, including worker shortages and a lack of critical components and raw materials.

In an effort to relieve the stresses of lockdowns and supply chain disruptions, many shippers are looking to air freight as an accessible and practical solution. Follow along with this overview of the advantages of air freight and get 3 air freight tips you can use to overcome chemical supply chain woes.

Advantages of Air Freight Delivery Services

Air cargo transports more than $6 trillion worth of goods, accounting for approximately 35% of world trade by value. Traditionally, air freight costs about six times as much as ocean cargo, but this gap has closed significantly due to high ocean freight costs during the pandemic. Factors like increased port shipping times, lack of driver capacity, and increased costs across the board all contribute to the high costs of ocean shipping. While air cargo is still prohibitively expensive for some manufacturers and retailers, demand has surged regardless over the past year as port backlogs continue dragging on.

Air freight’s rapid turnover and flexibility help cover supply chain gaps and help ensure goods make it to their destinations on time. Using air freight, businesses no longer need to worry about ground-related travel disruptions like traffic, road construction, and auto accidents that could add hours to delivery or pickup. This quick turnaround helps air cargo operators and ground handlers expedite the shipping process, making them much more efficient with your cargo. Since inventory stays on the same plane for the duration of the journey, it’s handled less, leading to a lower chance of getting lost or damaged.

3 Air freight Tips for Overcoming Chemical Supply Chain Woes

  1. Rely on a Trusted Chemical Logistics Provider

Chemical transportation (especially by air) can be highly complicated with all the laws and regulations that shippers must follow. The best way to overcome chemical supply chain woes is by partnering with a trusted chemical logistics provider with a high level of industry experience. It’s critical to establish trust with your 4PL to ensure full transparency to your goods and maintain confidence that your provider will transport your goods, leveraging the most efficient and affordable solutions possible while adhering to all legal and customs processes and demands.

  1. Be Open-Minded About New Shipping Methods

With constant supply chain disruption, logistics providers rely on increasingly complex intermodal solutions that change daily and require consistent outside-the-box thinking to guarantee customer timetables. While air is generally faring better than ocean transport, processing times have extended as facilities and airports work to meet demand. Successful shippers incorporate all modes of transportation, including air, into their transportation management strategy to mitigate the risks of tight capacity, rate hikes, and on-time requirements. It’s also often possible to procure supplies and goods faster or cheaper through a country outside the US and utilize air freight to close supply chain gaps.

  1. Plan Ahead and Expect Shortages and Delays

As global supply chain networks are expected to see continued struggles, planning and preparing for the unknown is one of the most valuable things you can do to ensure supply chain continuity – whether a global pandemic breaks out, critical waterways shut down, a military conflict erupts, or any other major event.

A Transportation Management System (TMS) is key to forecasting global supply chain impact and implementing solutions before a problem occurs. CLX TMS is one such solution that offers a fully integrated carrier network and real-time visibility to your entire global and domestic supply chain. You get the absolute best planning and execution capabilities across your network, supported by CLX Logistics’ unmatched expertise, adaptability, and flexibility.

Getting Started with Air Freight

It’s clear that air freight is a powerful tool to help shippers transport chemical goods to customers worldwide on time. However, many still struggle to leverage this mode among others effectively and incorporate the flexibility a modern supply chain needs to succeed. That’s where CLX Logistics comes in. CLX TMS’s fully integrated carrier network and CLX Logistics’ unmatched expertise, adaptability, and flexibility integrate as a seamless extension of your operations to deliver the absolute best planning and execution capabilities across your network.

Contact us to talk about your chemical air freight and supply chain needs and learn how CLX TMS can help transform and streamline your entire process.

War in Ukraine & Its Impact on the Global Supply Chain Crisis

Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen global supply chains pushed to the brink of speed and capacity.  Global providers, ports and intermediaries of all sizes have struggled to keep up with shipping capacity demand as COVID-19 and the ongoing labor shortages continue to impact networks.  The volume – more than 30% of pre-covid in some places – have exposed the lack of network resilience and overwhelmed transportation networks globally. Unfortunately, the war in Ukraine puts additional pressure on networks for a variety of reasons:
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Transloading Vs. Intermodal in Logistics & Supply Chains

The main difference between transloading and intermodal shipping is that transloading consists of products transferred from one mode of transportation to another, compared to intermodal, where an entire shipping container is transferred. Transloading is often a required step of the shipping process but can also be leveraged strategically to reduce storage costs, speed up delivery times, and improve supply chain efficiency.

Keep reading to get up to speed on the nuances between these similar but functionally separate transportation methodologies.

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A Guide to Choosing Freight Brokerage Companies in 2022

When a business needs to get connected with shippers and freight service providers, they often rely on a freight broker to manage the logistics of that engagement. Shippers and carriers each have unique requirements and schedules, and a freight broker acts as a middle man who matches two good partners together to arrange successful shipments. For shippers, outsourcing freight transportation needs instead of working directly with a carrier is often the easiest, most hassle-free way to guarantee a shipment reaches its destination fast. Shippers can skip the paperwork and solve pressing problems, and carriers save time and money by filling their truck capacity. CLX Logistics is unique for our specialization in bulk chemical transportation, but freight brokers exist in all areas of the industry, including lowboy hauling, oversize loads, auto carriers, and many others.
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Agile Supply Chain Management in 2022: Why it Matters More Than Ever

Supply chains constantly change and evolve because of an endless range of factors outside the control of transportation management specialists. As globalization, digitization, and rapidly fluctuating supply and demand continue to impact the industry, there is a growing need for more sophisticated, built-in risk management procedures to help keep supply chains nimble and agile. In 2022 and beyond, shippers are moving away from the concept of a lean supply chain to prioritize agility. Unfortunately, many supply chain entities don’t understand or fail to grasp the full scope and concept of agility and how it functions in relation and contrast to a lean supply chain.

This blog looks at how the agile supply chain management paradigm has shifted in 2022 and how you can adapt to the changes.

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Preparing for Continued Global Supply Chain Issues in 2022

The pandemic impacts our everyday lives with ripple effects throughout the global supply chain. With unprecedented supply chain disruption, many businesses are experiencing low inventory, and in the worst cases, shutting down indefinitely. Supply chain delays and disruptions are a severe problem considering how deeply globalized and intertwined modern shipping networks tend to be. Currently, experts disagree on how long supply chain issues will impact the economy. But, there are luckily things businesses can do proactively to prevent problems and mitigate potential risks.

In this blog, we’re looking at the root causes of current supply chain issues and how businesses can prepare their supply chains for success in 2022 and beyond.

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Planning and Executing Project Cargo Shipping: All You Need to Know

Project Cargo, also known as project forwarding or project logistics, is the transportation of large, complex, out-of-scope, or high-value pieces of equipment. The process involves single or multiple shipments with help from cranes, trucks, rail, planes, and ships and can cover a wide range of freight value. Project Cargo tends to have a specific timeframe or delivery date, making them among the most complex and detailed projects in the logistics industry.

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Ultimate Guide to Managed Transportation Services

Modern logistics problems demand modern solutions. Today, countless US shippers face supply chain issues like driver shortages, capacity inefficiencies, government regulations, shrinking delivery windows, and rising transportation costs. Companies slow to address these issues run a severe risk of falling behind competitors who continuously seek faster, more efficient, and cost-effective chemical logistics solutions. Facing these challenges, the market is seeing significant increases in the reliance on outsourced shipping specialists for logistics and supply chain services – first and foremost are comprehensive managed transportation solutions.

At CLX Logistics, we’re passionate about managed transportation and want to share everything we know about it with you in your search for the ideal managed transportation partner. In this blog, we’re looking at what managed transportation is, how it works, and its key benefits. Continue reading “Ultimate Guide to Managed Transportation Services”