Data analytics rose as a revolutionary tool for businesses across multiple industries, and occupies a familiar space in every company’s tech today. Business Intelligence (BI) tools help enhance decision-making processes that set the right strategies and implementations in action, ultimately reversing back to a business in the form of improved performance.

The freight forwarding industry has not yet fully harnessed the potential of data analytics to unlock operational efficiencies. Let’s explore the general benefits of data analytics through a BI dashboarding tool and then delve into specific advantages of such tools for forwarding businesses.

Data Analytics via BI: A Boon for Businesses

  1. Improved Decision-Making

Data analytics displays accurate information in real-time, on the basis of which informed decisions can be made. This information is widely called ‘insights’ and can be in the form of visuals like charts and graphs, or can be language-based.

  1. Higher Operational Efficiency

BI tools analyze vast historical datasets and help identify data anomalies, or, for example, inconsistent data trends. These operational inefficiencies, once identified, can be then drilled down into and addressed further.

  1. Proactive Issue Resolution

Data analytics empowers businesses to proactively identify and address potential issues before they escalate. With a BI tool, forwarders can monitor key performance metrics via a business overview dashboard, allowing them to take timely actions, mitigate risks, and ensure smoother operations.

Learn more from our experts how you can digitalize your freight forwarding & logistics business.

Benefits of data analytics for forwarding business

  1. Enhanced Supply Chain Visibility

Forwarders can use real-time insights to track and analyze data on shipment status, transit times, and customs clearance. Transparency can be achieved on potential bottlenecks and promptly communicated with customers, leading to improved customer satisfaction.

  1. Demand Forecasting and Inventory Management

With data analytics, forwarders can forecast demand more accurately by analyzing historical data, market trends, and customer behavior. This empowers them to optimize inventory levels, reduce stockouts, and ensure timely delivery of goods, enhancing customer experiences and reducing costs associated with excess inventory.

  1. Customer Relationship Management

Personalization can only be achieved when businesses know what their customers have always preferred, and predictions can be made on future preferences. Data analytics helps forwarders gain a deeper understanding of their customers’ preferences, needs, and behaviors. Forwarders can thus tailor their offerings according to the anticipated customer demands and build stronger relationships with them.

  1. Cost Optimization

Analytics helps identify cost-saving opportunities and optimize resource allocation. By analyzing data on transportation expenses, inventory levels, and supplier performance, forwarders can make data-driven decisions to minimize costs, negotiate better contracts, and enhance profitability.

  1. Route Optimization and Carrier Selection

Analyzing factors such as distance, transit times, and carrier performance, and  selecting the most efficient routes and reliable carriers on those bases, enables forwarders to improve turnaround times and minimize delays.

Empowering businesses with intelligence

One BI tool designed for forwarders is Softlink Global’s LogiBrain, a feature in the all-in-one logistics management software Logi-Sys. LogiBrain has an overview dashboard that covers monthly and branch performance, performance by LOB, and trade lane; advanced filters that sort the data by transport and transaction types, currency, country, branches, time periods; and root cause analysis to get to the heart of any data point of concern and extract granular insights around it. LogiBrain comes with multiple sales, operational and financial analysis options in addition to other reporting conveniences like the option to convert chart type or display intel on hover for fingertip access to information.

To conclude, multiple industries and companies have leveraged data analytics tools on a large scale and have experienced massive success. Such technology offers significant benefits for freight forwarding operations as well. By uncovering hidden insights from their data, forwarders can enhance their decision-making processes that sets off the entire chain of success for them, starting with valuable insights that convert into on-field implementation.

With the ability to gain valuable insights into supply chain operations, forecast demand, and optimize routes, forwarding businesses can achieve cost savings, enhance visibility, and gain a competitive edge. It’s time for forwarders to embrace data analytics and unlock the full potential of their operations in the dynamic and evolving world of freight forwarding.

Originally Published in Portcalls Asia Magazine

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