Specialized software for freight forwarding and logistics has been quite popular. The pandemic only spurred its adoption. A survey by MHI found that 49% of supply chain leaders have accelerated spending in digital technologies to make their operations more responsive and forward-looking during the pandemic.
Investments are of immense importance to the company. It is imperative to get the decision spot on. Implementing freight software is believed to be the cure for all business problems. But stressing that software alone will be truly liberating for the business could be delusional.
To ensure your investment is a complete success, you must avoid a few common pitfalls which broadly fall under the below headers.
- Not the software you wanted
- Improper implementation
- Incorrect use of the software
Not the software you wanted
Before implementing a new software solution, the management puts in a lot of thought and effort. At times, the reason for the partial success of the implementation is not even related to the software chosen.
Before determining the solution for your company, meet the vendor and clearly state your requirements and expectations. Also, share the expectations with your software system users.
That way, you have their full cooperation during training and post-implementation. When all parties involved have clarity, achieving the common goals of growth and streamlining functions becomes easier.
Software vendors differ in their ways to implement and train your staff. Your solution provider must have a systematic implementation and training program that ensures a shallow learning curve and minimal downtime in the transition. Ideally, the new software must be easy to navigate and get you started on your first shipment booking within a week. Implementations that go past the deadlines rarely end up as a complete success. Choose a provider that has a reputation of sticking to the agreed schedule and has maximum implementation success.
Incorrect use of the software
Do not look at your installed solution as the “silver bullet” to solve your company’s freight challenges. It takes restructuring of processes, coordinated team effort, and constant commitment to bring a visible impact on your company. Think long-term with permanent results rather than quick but short-lived effects.
Processes not aligned to fully extract the value: Freight management software reduces the complexity and eliminates redundant tasks. But if the remainder of manual tasks like approvals takes longer, it does not serve the purpose of speeding up processes.
Inefficiencies covered by additional purchases: If the software implemented requires assistance from other solutions then you have an incomplete solution. For instance, is your freight software is capable of:
- Capturing leads
- Generating Bill of Lading
- Consolidating payments
- Filing taxes and
- Auto-notifying customers of shipping updates?
If you require more than one software to handle all of these tasks, your investment isn’t valuable.
Not having decentralized accessibility: The dependability of the freight and logistics industry has made constant data connectivity a priority. The pandemic highlighted this requirement.
Investments that are future-ready
The purpose of investment is always with an eye for the future. Being flexible enough to accommodate a scaling business is the least expected from your implemented software. The revamp of the existing freight management system takes up considerable resources. Plan your investment well to ensure the chosen solution is an end-to-end solution that stays relevant for a decent number of years.