Businesses in Australia have two options when they consider transporting freight in or out of Australia. They can allocate resources and hire freight forwarding professionals in-house or they can outsource to an experienced freight forwarder. Freight forwarding operations consists of domestic transport, sea freight, air freight, customs clearance and many times short-term storage. In addition to the modes of transport, effective freight forwarding requires efficient management of product, documents, processes, cash flow and resources.
For an individual business, it can be challenging to align the resources and manage all the flows simultaneously and proficiently. This is where a freight forwarder steps in with their years of experience, expertise and professional management. A proficient and experienced freight forwarder can have a huge impact on freight forwarding operations through efficient management of freight forwarding processes, resources, and consequently assist in achieving freight deadlines with cost-effectiveness. Smart businesses know collaborating with the right freight forwarding company increases their resource network, gives them better negotiation skills, provides efficient information and document flow, assists them to meet their freight deadlines, and improves their customers’ satisfaction.
Read onto to learn the positive impacts a freight forwarder can have on your freight forwarding operation.
Impact on your resource network
Freight forwarding services require and utilise different resources from air freight providers and sea freight providers to trucking/rail companies and custom brokerage agents. For a hassle-free freight forwarding operation, your resource network must be defined, proven and organised. Many Logistics Managers feel challenged in fulfilling their global orders because they do not have a resource network that provides enough transparency, cost-effectiveness and confidence to achieve their deadlines. A well-established freight forwarder in Australia will have a vast and reliable resource network. Outsourcing your freight forwarding operation to these freight forwarders can have a positive impact on your operation and give you the flexibility to ship to or from any part of the world along with transparency and confidence.
Impact on your planning
Planning plays a very crucial role in your freight forwarding operation as “flawless planning leads to perfect deliveries”. Before shipping goods, importers and exporters have many things to consider including:
- Vessel planning
- Transit days
- Container packing
- Shipping documents management
- Resources required
Last, but certainly not least is the Backup plan which should be rigid and well identified so that delivery timelines can be met.
Unplanned cargo leads to unnecessary detention, delays, and increased freight cost. Freight forwarders investigate and plan the most appropriate transportation mode, route, and understand the legalities for your shipment, taking into account the nature of goods, cost, transit time and security.
Impact on transit time and cost
Transit time and cost are two major factors used for assessing the success of any freight forwarding operation. Many businesses aspire to deliver their products using the fastest mode with the minimum freight cost. In freight forwarding, transit time and cost are directly related to each other and for perfect delivery, one needs to strike the right balance according to the priorities and needs of that shipment. Experienced freight forwarding companies can influence transit time and cost based on negotiating power and can provide transparency and visibility using their IT systems. Freight forwarding companies find the right balance between transit time and cost for each individual customer.
Impact on your product flow
The core function of any supply chain is the efficient management of product flow. Delivering products in the right quantity, in the right packaging, in the right condition, at the right time, to the right person following a legalised way is the goal. Any disruption in your supply chain can block or slow down the product flow resulting in increased pipeline stock. In addition, to gain complete inventory control, businesses should have end-to-end visibility of their in-transit stock.An established freight forwarder is well equipped with IT tools to provide better visibility and traceability of inventory that is in-transit.
Appropriate document flow is mandatory along with product flow. Incomplete, inaccurate, or delayed documentation are three of the most identified reasons for shipment detention, which leads to a delay in deliveries, unnecessary cost, tiring follow-ups and customer dissatisfaction. CAT (complete-accurate-timely) documentation makes freight forwarding operations hassle-free and help to meet delivery timelines. Prior to shipping any air freight or sea freight shipment, a freight forwarder ensures that all the necessary documents for shipping and customs clearance are availble so they can deliver an efficient service. You can learn more on shipping documentation in our Frequently Asked Questions section.
Trade between two different countries makes a freight forwarding operation very dynamic. Goods must be transported in a legal way that follows all government regulations, within a committed transit time that works for your business and for the optimal cost. Engaging a well-organised freight forwarder influences all these factors positively and ensures that your products move through the supply chain seamlessly and economically with minimum deviation from the plan. This creates a positive impact on total supply chain performance.