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7 Ways to Build Better Supplier Relationships with Inbound Dock Scheduling

There are many factors that suppliers and carriers consider when it comes to choosing the most eligible shipper, especially when it pertains to the efficiency of a company's process of inbound dock scheduling.

As loading and unloading shipments at distribution centers are the lifeline of any logistics company, flexibility and the ability to maintain good rapport with suppliers and drivers serve to be of high importance according to Supply Chain 24/7. After all, time is money and drivers want to be catered to as quickly and least problematic as possible.

Below you’ll find the 7 major key points and traits of what makes eligible shippers a highly desirable pick.

Eliminate Manual Processes for Inbound Dock Scheduling

Suppliers and carriers desire one thing above all, and that is to avoid unnecessary time-consuming delays when it comes to receiving their loads. By eliminating processes such as manually filling out paperwork upon arrival and long treks back and forth from the truck to receiving offices (especially for large distribution centers), companies can both optimize their dock management and be considered the most desirable pick for drivers. How can companies achieve this incredible feat? This leads to the next point.


Connect Your Systems to Avoid Confusion

By utilizing technology, businesses can integrate all these processes digitally. Instead of drivers having to jump through all the loops and bounds of getting their shipments received, connecting all parties’ systems eliminates confusion and optimizes inbound dock scheduling. With this approach, drivers are able to achieve all the necessary steps without all the hassle. Using an appointment scheduling system for dock scheduling simplifies the process of receiving inbound loads and saves the drivers valuable time.

Share Updates in Real-Time With Suppliers

Other incredible benefits that transportation technology provides are real-time status updates and insight into suppliers and even carriers. By using tools like a transportation management system (TMS) companies can better accurately predict load capacity. This leads to enough lead time for inbound dock scheduling, making planning and strategizing more efficient.

BYOD-3Let Carriers and Suppliers Self-Optimize Their Schedules

Flexibility is one of the most preferable options that drivers desire. Having a reasonable hour of service (HOS) timetable is critical. Unexpected occurrences often happen on the road; accidents, delays, and weather can set inbound dock scheduling times back for shippers. Instead of punishing a supplier or carrier for something that is out of their control, allowing them to self-optimize their dock schedule with web-based systems or provide another time slot for unexpected delays that fairly accommodates them allows both parties to arrive at mutually benefiting alternative solutions. This accommodation can go a long way.

Avoid Urgent Replenishment, Using Forecasting to Plan Reordering

When accurate data isn’t available (due to the lack of technology integration) shippers are often in panic mode. When a problem can’t be thoroughly analyzed, urgent replenishment can be a rushed decision. By using features such as freight forecasting, reordering becomes the viable go-to decision. This saves companies time, helps avoid costly mistakes, and allows for more efficiency when it comes to inbound dock scheduling.

Analyze Market Trends to Scale Transportation Procurement

Clear visibility into information allows shippers to make more data-backed decisions. When a company can analyze the market on a day-to-day basis, predicting the steadiness in lane patterns becomes simplified which can lead to a better understanding of transportation capacity and procurement. By understanding what is occurring in the transportation sector, businesses can scale accordingly and optimize their inbound dock scheduling method. All with the confidence of reliable data. 

Stay Strategic, Using Data-Driven Insights to Plan Mini-Bids, New Contracts, and More

With deep insight into data, shippers can observe the current condition of the market. If it happens to be in their favor, they can strategize to plan for better mini-bids and/or request for proposals (RFPs). Although this all boils down to the awareness of what’s going on in the market and taking a realistic approach with suppliers and carriers in mind, the collaboration that benefits both parties should be the ultimate goal. After all, a contract or deal that is fair maintains long-lasting working relationships.

Overcome the Barriers to Inbound Dock Scheduling Efficiency With the Right Technology Partner

It is evident that using technology allows shippers to be the most sought-after desirable choice for suppliers and carriers. Through the use of modern tools, outdated manual processes are replaced with digital efficient methods and automation that save drivers and shippers time and resources. Start benefiting from these tools today. Request a C3 Solutions demo to get started.