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How to Be a Shipper of Choice

May 31, 2018 | Logistics

In this market, there is a high demand from shippers with a continued shortage of drivers. Carriers have the power to be selective about the freight they move and the shippers they work with. Therefore, shippers who want to get the best capacity need to establish a long-term solution to positively appeal to carriers and drivers. Having the “shipper of choice” mentality will result in developing partnerships with valued carriers.

Be Easy to Work With

First, it is essential to hire the best talent that will prioritize building relationships with carriers and professional drivers. It is crucial to treat drivers like a customer. Associates must deliver exceptional customer service, give drivers the respect they deserve and build relationships by finding ways to better service the carrier and driver. Word gets around fast, whether it’s a truck stop conversation or a post on social media, reputations can easily be built.

Make a professional driver’s job easier by offering amenities such as public restrooms, break areas and parking. Since spots fill up fast, a concise parking solution needs to be communicated before arrival. There are mobile applications created that allow for the driver to reserve spots online.

Make Safety a Priority

Checking in and out of a facility is a common issue among many shippers. Clear signage and a process for drivers to adhere to needs to be established. Often, a driver is visiting a location for the first time, so guidance and hospitality is necessary. Having clear and concise directions for a driver upon arrival to a facility will improve the entire loading and unloading process, while maintaining a safe and direct environment. Implementing safe traffic patterns will also help the flow of equipment for a facility.

If a driver dislikes going to a location because of tough navigation or unsafe conditions, they may choose to take on different freight. To avoid this, shipping locations need to appear on a GPS, roads need to be well-paved and easy to access. Be sure to notify drivers if a yard has certain requirements or potential hazards.

Every Hour Matters

Shippers must provide visibility by communicating efficiently to carriers. They need to offer extended loading times and provide clear pick up information to prevent delays. In order to increase productivity, shippers should do everything they can to avoid last minute cancellations and wait times. Offering drop and hook options can prevent appointment cancellations as well as costly detention charges.

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