Explore how comprehensive analytics tools complement shipping software to transform your shipping operations

“Accuracy is the twin brother of honesty; inaccuracy, of dishonesty.” — Charles Simmons

Although we cannot confirm Simmons was specifically referring to data accuracy in his quote, it does draw a parallel to its fundamental importance when it comes to shipping. Today’s shipping landscape is moving faster and has grown far more competitive than ever before. As companies navigate the boom in global e-commerce and increasingly complex supply chains, the need for accurate data and robust analytics has become crucial. For IBM i (AS/400) shippers, efficient transportation management is the key to staying ahead of the competition, keeping customers happy, and keeping costs down.

Advanced analytics and accurate data can be game changers. They provide shippers with the necessary insights to make informed decisions, streamline operations, and enhance overall efficiency. However, many companies are overwhelmed by the sheer volume of transactions. Extracting meaningful insights from this data overload can often feel impossible, especially with the wrong tools. This lack of visibility frequently leads to missed opportunities, inefficiencies, and increased costs.

In such a fast-paced and dynamic industry, having the ability to analyze what’s happening in your shipping operations in real-time is a necessity. Yet, transactional data often gets lost in complex systems, making it tough to access and interpret. Further, businesses often overlook critical performance and cost analyses, depriving themselves of the insights necessary for improvement and cost savings. The bottom line is that traditional data collection and analysis methods are no longer sufficient in today’s competitive environment. Let’s begin by taking a closer look into the challenges shippers face when they lack comprehensive analytics and visibility in their shipping operations.

When IBM i (AS/400) Power systems shippers lack robust analytics and accurate data, their shipping operations face a variety of complexities that can impact efficiency, increase costs, limit growth potential, and cause negative customer experiences. These complexities include:

  • Lack of Visibility: Without analytics, shippers struggle to gain visibility into their daily shipping operations, making it extremely difficult to track shipments, identify potential bottlenecks, and optimize delivery routes. This can lead to shipping delays, missed deadlines, and dissatisfied customers.
  • Inefficient Resource Allocation: Inaccurate data or the lack thereof can cause the inefficient allocation of resources. Underutilized capacity, unnecessary costs, and missed opportunities for optimization are all possible consequences. Without analytics, it’s difficult to determine the most cost-effective shipping methods, leading to higher expenses and reduced profitability.
  • Limited Performance Monitoring: Monitoring both current and historical performance metrics is essential for identifying trends, evaluating performance, pinpointing inefficiencies, and making informed decisions. However, without real-time analytics, shippers lack the tools to effectively monitor important factors like on-time delivery rates and transit times as well as make necessary adjustments in real-time. Additionally, inconsistent or missing historical data storage makes it even harder, hindering shippers’ ability to track trends over time.
  • Ineffective Carrier Negotiations: The lack of access to data regarding shipping volumes, carrier performance, and historical trends can leave shippers at a disadvantage when negotiating terms with carriers. This may lead to increased shipping costs, lower service levels, and reduced competitiveness in the market.
  • Poor Forecasting Capabilities: Effective inventory management, shipment planning, and meeting customer demand all rely heavily on accurate forecasting. However, businesses lacking robust analytics capabilities may struggle to predict shipping volumes, demand fluctuations, and inventory needs with sufficient precision. This can result in stockouts, excess inventory, and ultimately, increased carrying costs.
  • Fragmented Parcel and LTL Data: Shippers working with both parcel and less-than-truckload (LTL) shipments often lack the visibility to compare performance across these different shipping methods. This makes it difficult to assess how all parts of the supply chain are performing and where improvements can be made. Without the ability to see analytics that compare parcel and LTL shipments, businesses may miss out on opportunities to optimize their entire shipping operation.

It is clear that shippers are in need of a solution that offers clear visibility and data-driven insights as part of their transportation strategies. This solution must overcome the barriers of data preservation, organization, and accessibility, enabling businesses to embrace the full potential and value of their historical data. By tackling these challenges, companies can transform their shipping operations, negotiating better carrier contracts, pinpointing areas for operational improvement, and ultimately exceeding customer expectations. The right shipping analytics tool translates to a significant competitive advantage, and for IBM i shippers, it’s called the Varsity Logistics Transdata module.

Traditionally, shipping and logistics teams have lacked easy access to the data they need to optimize their operations. Part of Varsity’s multi-carrier shipping software suite, Transdata datamart solves this challenge by providing a readily accessible repository of organized, well-defined, and highly detailed historical shipping data for both parcel and LTL shipments. This empowers businesses to leverage powerful analytics and make data-driven decisions for carrier negotiations and overall performance improvement, viewing all crucial shipment data in one place.

How Transdata Works

Transdata provides a comprehensive solution to the data accessibility and organization challenges commonly faced by shipping operations. By automatically extracting and storing daily historical data from transaction files, Transdata guarantees businesses access to well-organized, clearly defined data without requiring costly programming or IT resources. Its seamless integration with existing systems facilitates easy access to rich historical data, empowering users to make informed decisions and enhance their shipping operations.

Key Benefits

Leveraging Transdata in your shipping operations provides a multitude of benefits for IBM i (AS/400) Power systems users, including:

  • Enhanced Decision-Making: Transdata empowers businesses with powerful information to make strategic decisions based on data, not guesswork. It provides access to organized historical data and real-time insights, eliminating the need for routine IT programming to generate the data.
  • Improved Carrier Negotiations: Transdata provides shippers with the information they need at their fingertips to prepare for and gain valuable leverage in carrier negotiations. With access to detailed historical data on shipping and transportation performance, businesses can better negotiate agreements, lowering carrier costs and improving overall profitability.
  • Valuable Trend Monitoring: Transdata enables shippers to monitor trends and identify important shifts or inefficiencies in their operations. It also allows businesses to view carrier information in various ways to gain visibility into shipping operations and costs by several dimensions such as service type, geography, carrier, customer, and more, allowing them to respond and take proactive action.
  • Cost Reduction and Performance Improvement: By providing access to detailed historical data, Transdata enables businesses to take control of their shipping and transportation operations. With a range of different tools and the ability to write queries, it allows businesses to significantly reduce costs, improve performance, and enhance customer satisfaction.

With a mission to provide seamless shipping solutions and integration services, Varsity Logistics stands as an industry leader in the multi-carrier shipping software space for IBM i (AS/400) shippers. In addition to the robust capabilities of Varsity’s Transdata, we offer a variety of comprehensive parcel and LTL shipping modules to help shippers optimize their operations and meet their unique needs. These additional modules for parcel include:

Freight shipping modules include:

The modern shipping world is ever evolving and therefore demands accurate data and advanced analytics to remain competitive and keep customers satisfied. Varsity’s Transdata provides a powerful solution, offering organized and detailed data. This empowers businesses to take control of their shipping operations, make data-driven decisions, monitor trends, improve carrier negotiations, and optimize performance.

Are you ready to reduce costs, enhance efficiency, and boost customer satisfaction? As the shipping industry continues to evolve, tools like Transdata are essential. Contact our team of shipping experts or schedule a no-pressure demo to learn more about our advanced analytics functionality and how Varsity can help your business unlock its full potential.

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