Are you new to the shipping industry? Maybe you’re a small business who just expanded their distribution reach. Perhaps you’re looking to ship a small amount of freight to a new branch. No matter what your situation, if you’re new to less than truckload shipping these tips will come in handy to help your company maximize the value of LTL freight shipping.
But how can you, as the shipper, help ensure your shipment arrives safely, within budget and on time?
Here are 6 Tips for Less Than Truckload Shipping
1. Utilize a 3PL service.
Working with a third-party logistics (3PL) company provides valuable resources. One major benefit of working with a 3PL lies in the vast array of services available. While one carrier may have expertise in truckload, another may be a leader in LTL service. The Junction LLC has high standards for carrier approval and can provide freight shippers with competitively priced supply chain solutions for almost any service.
2. Manage your shipment with a TMS.
Business practices evolve constantly, and along with it new technologies and platforms are developed to help improve efficiency. With the desktop platform and mobile app, the free, The Junction LLC, transportation management system (TMS) allows shippers to book LTL shipments, track the progress of each load, and view analytics for cost, on-time delivery and more.
3. Define the right class.
The National Motor Freight Carrier (NFMC) number provides integral information about the items in an LTL shipment. In order to properly load the trailer and keep cargo safe, a driver must understand which items are included on each pallet.
4. Complete the BOL correctly.
The Bill of Lading (BOL) is one of the most important documents needed to complete a freight shipment. In essence, the BOL serves the purpose of quickly showcasing the agreed-upon components of the shipment, including the contracted carrier, contents of the shipment and NMFC number, shipper contact information, and more. If shipping documentation is not filled out properly, confusion and delays could result. One major disruption would be if the NMFC number is not properly documented; this could result in the need to reclassify the freight and add fess to the customer’s bill.
5. Package freight on pallets.
Palletizing your freight has many benefits to the shipper and carrier. Most importantly, properly palletized freight decreases the chance of damage to individual items. In addition, securing freight on pallets helps keep multi-piece shipments from being separated. Ensure pallets are in good condition and are sturdy enough to support the load.
6. Maintain standard shipping/receiving hours.
Most shipping and receiving facilities that utilize less than truckload services remain open from 8 am to 5 pm. LTL carriers typically only operate within the 8 am to 5 pm window. Accessorial fees may be added to the final bill if pickups or deliveries must be made outside of normal operating hours. In addition, wide windows for pickups or drop-offs can help ensure a driver won’t be left waiting for personnel to arrive at the facility.
In some cases, a truckload shipment may be your most cost-effective option if your freight doesn’t need to be shipped immediately. The Junction LLC has the resources and capabilities to ensure you receive the right shipping solution at the right cost. Additionally, our carrier network helps us provide you with competitive prices and on-time performance, making every customer experience outstanding.