More Than 70% Transport Industry Adopting Transport Management Software
The Transportation industry in India is mostly unorganized and fragmented. Factors like trust-based work and lethargy towards change are notable aspects that act as a deterrent in the complete computerization of the operations of the industry. Typically, four key players are involved when goods are transported from one place to another.
A shipper or usually the brand or the organization that initiates the entire transportation order because he needs his manufactured goods to reach from place X to place Y; Transporter is the person who bears the financial burden of ensuring that the goods are picked from the place X and is transported to place Y. In between, it is his responsibility to get the proper documentation and paperwork done, arrange for the funds, pay the vehicle owners and so on; transport brokers are people who work in between the transporter and the vehicle owner; and finally, the vehicle owner or the supplier who has his fleet of vehicles.
All entities in this process are working to maximize their returns on investments. The entire job, from the start till the end – that is, from the moment the order for transportation is raised by the shipper at Point X to the point where his goods are delivered to Point Y, there are multiple processes involved that have been for ages been carried out manually. Whether the shipment or the goods are meant for domestic transportation or international, some of the steps that need to be undertaken are:
- Warehouse-related jobs where the goods are packaged and packed appropriately. Then the goods are then stacked in the relevant order, labeled properly and the bill of lading is prepared.
- The bill of lading is a formal understanding between the shipper or the transporter with the carrier owner mentioning in detail what the shipment consists of, the destination details and so on. This bill also serves as a guarantee or proof and hence plays an important role in the transportation system.
- Next, the shipment traverses the distance through various modes of transportation, depending largely on the nature of transportation – domestic or international. Whether it is via road, rail or air, the goods pass different geographical regions and pass through different hands before finally reaching its destination.
Most parts of the world today already have in place computerized and automated systems in the transportation industry that help the involved entities in numerous ways. In India, however, the story has been a bit different – the reluctance to adopt automation has been one of the biggest issues with the industry. This was about a decade back. In the last few years, probably with many new players joining in, the trend is noticeably changing. And, since most of the shippers in the country today are working using smart and advanced technology to make their internal and external processes faster and effective, it is perhaps only a question of time before the others in the supply chain and logistics industry open up to adopting the new-age method of working.
A lot has happened in the last few years in the transportation industry – at least attempts have been made to make things better and smoother. The use of the online world to build a platform that could bring shippers, transporters, brokers and fleet owners to a certain level of computerization has happened in recent years. This has seen many shippers use the electronic medium to handle their transportation requirements. The development has been noticeable in the recent past as today more than 70% of the Indian transport industry is using some or the other form of the Transport management software.
Why transportation software?
Just like any other software program, transportation software is one of the best means to improve the operational efficiency of the entire transportation process. Since maximizing returns is the bottom-line of all businesses, the best way to do so is by making your customers happy and satisfied. And finally, the objective of making good returns is all about reducing the shipment and the logistics costs.
Towards this end, transport companies are opening up to the concept of computerizing their entire operations including work at ground zero. The thought is to make all processes efficient all through the supply chain and in the process minimize costs and increase savings. These are the direct benefits of incorporating the right software into the transportation business.
1. Real-Time Tracking
In the manually-driven systems, monitoring the movement of goods is one of the biggest challenges. As a result, shippers are often left with no choice but to constantly pick up their phones to call and follow-up with the transporter on the status of the goods-in-transit. Here again, most of the times the customer or the shipper and his client would be in dark on the exact location, status quo of the goods. As a result, most customers would be wary of transporters and they’re over commitments.
Manual processes are so heavily dependent on human beings performing the job that a client had no other alternative than to trust the transporter and his people. Today, with software systems in place all these have transformed. Today, the shipper is updated through and through about the movement and status of his goods from day one. Being able to track the movement of shipments is one of the biggest pluses of the software system.
2. Optimum Customer Service
For any business, nothing could be more important than the customers. Keeping customers satisfied and being able to go beyond their expectations is a good way to maintain loyal customers. Delivering the best services also helps a business increase its clientele through positive word of mouth. With advanced management process, features like shipment tracking in real-time are a great way to instill confidence in customers.
Compared to the manual days when customers would easily get unhappy and dissatisfied with constant follow-ups and reminders, today with the use of the right software system, customers are able to get direct updates on their handphones and smart devices. Plus, with the best software in-house, the shipments are transported with better accuracy that eliminates errors and discrepancies. With this change in the dynamics of control and the flexibility of being able to receive instant notifications in their inboxes, customers are bound to be happy and satisfied.
3. Increase in efficiency in transporter’s work process
Also, at the transporter’s end, operations are run more efficiently because all the processes are powdered by computers and software programs. With reduced duplicity of work and optimized processes, customer service has touched new levels in the transport industry. From being able to keep a track on the vehicle and the driver, to managing the inventory optimally, from efficiently managed warehouse workflows to managing assets, space and other aspects; there are plenty of advantages that the system can infuse in a transporter’s business.
All this removes and reduces inefficiencies and gaps that the manual system was filled with. All-in-all, transport management software is the ideal way to uplift the productivity levels of the business as well as that of the people who are managing all the operations.
4. Reduction in costs
Minimizing and reducing costs is one of the core focus areas of any business and the transport industry is no different. How does using a transport management software help in minimizing costs? The new-age systems integrate different functionalities of a transport business so that it provides for seamless connectivity between one process to another, from the start till the end. This helps in the reduction of shipping and logistic costs. Plus, the software helps determine the optimized routes, use of assets and space so that fuel consumption is kept to a minimum. With reduced paperwork, everything happens through the computerized system. This also eliminates the chances of manual errors like incorrect billing.
At the end of the day, from the owner’s perspective, there is a birds’ eye view of all processes and systems involved in the supply chain. This helps in better analysis of data and of course, leads to enhanced decision-making. Now, managers are able to track drivers and the vehicles throughout which works great from the safety aspect and helps reduce costs that were otherwise spent in legalities and accident coverages.
The goods transportation software has served as a boon to most transporters who took the decision to adopt modern-day technology and provide their businesses with a superior edge. With most players of the industry, be it small or big, adopting the transportation software, it is time that others who wish to stay in the business and grow their business, look towards the adoption of the right software program for their businesses too.
The right software is a big savior of time and money. Investing in the right software is a healthy sign for your customers and the market that will help you deliver exactly on your commitments.