One of the biggest paradoxes in logistics is that data is an essential part of the freight procurement process, yet so much of it is left lying dormant and underutilised.
A big reason for this is there is just so much data involved in freight procurement – just think about the size of your spreadsheet for even a basic tender. However, you don’t need to struggle to get insights into your dormant data anymore: today’s digital freight procurement platforms make it easy.
But what can you tangibly gain from bringing this dormant data to life? Here are the top reasons to digitise your dormant data.
To get full visibility into your rates
If you feel that you don’t have good visibility into your freight data, you’re not alone. A whopping 65% of procurement leaders stated they have limited to no visibility into their tier two suppliers.
With procurement teams often storing data in separate Excel sheets, it’s no surprise that it’s difficult to quickly identify active rates. Picture this: You’re searching in the dark using a candle, you’ll eventually find something but won’t get the whole picture. Or you could just switch on the electricity and instantly get full visibility.
Using Excel sheets is like searching with a candle, your data is stored in different spreadsheets and files in various computers - nothing is connected, making it impossible to analyse your full data set.
Using a digital freight procurement platform is like turning on the electricity: All your data is immediately centralised and connected. Specialised analysis tools automatically break all your data down into easy-to-understand graphs and tables, so you get total visibility into your suppliers and lanes - no matter what tier they are.
To create more accurate forecasts
Demand forecasting is one of the most crucial aspects of any freight procurement strategy – yet only 2% of freight procurement leaders reported being ‘extremely satisfied’ with the accuracy of their forecast.
In fact, the typical range of absolute forecast error at an item level was 20%-40% according to 42% of respondents from the same survey.
While some margin of error is expected in any forecast, such large variations in freight procurement mean you need to rely heavily on spot freight to keep your goods moving, which can be an expensive plan B.
To make accurate forecasts, you need every data point available at your fingertips – so you have full visibility into how much you spent on each lane and with each carrier. This means you can't afford to leave any data lying dormant. Using a digital platform that connects all your historical rate data makes this possible to access all your data in seconds, so you can make truly accurate forecasts and reduce your freight procurement spend.
To react to market disruptions effortlessly
After a year like 2020 and all the shocks that followed, the only thing we can be sure about is that we can’t be sure about anything. And we’re still struggling through this uncertain market, with shipping bottlenecks and capacity shortages bringing much of the industry to its knees.
If you have full visibility into all your data (not just your first level suppliers) when a disruption hits your shipping lanes, you can easily see if you have a solution available within your current suppliers.
Having easy access to your data like this is vital in times of crisis as you need to react quickly to keep your supply chain running. And with more disruptions to come, it’s more urgent than ever to get that vital visibility into every part of your shipment data.
To keep up with your competitors
It’s no secret that most procurement leaders are desperately looking for solutions to the lack of transparency into their data. And most of them are turning to digital procurement platforms to get it: The global market for supply chain management software and services is set to jump to $37 billion by 2027, more than doubling from $16 billion in 2019.
If you don’t go digital now, you risk falling behind your competitors who are getting full visibility into their freight rates, so they can make more cost-effective data-driven decisions.
If you want to learn more about how to bring your dormant data to life using a digital procurement platform, click the button below to speak to one of our logistics experts today.
SHIPSTA powers smart logistics procurement with a digital platform that connects shippers and carriers to ensure a frictionless procurement process for spot and contract buying, entirely online. It automates complex tasks, provides unrivalled visibility and supports fast data-driven decision making.
Designed and built by experts in logistics procurement, SHIPSTA is bringing transparency, automation and efficiency to the global logistics industry. It is used by some of the world’s largest companies to respond to market volatility, control freight costs and manage risk. The company was founded in 2015 and is based in Mertert, Luxembourg and Hamburg, Germany.