Choosing a Logistics Company
The transportation industry is huge. Virtually every business eventually has a need for transportation services be it small package delivery or heavy equipment shipping. There are literally thousands of logistics companies big and small who can provide you with freight services. Choosing a reliable freight company can be a daunting task but there are some things to keep in mind that will help quickly narrow the options.
Biggest isn’t always best: While large transportation companies can handle a wide variety of needs, your company’s needs may not be so complex. If you spend $ 100,000 per year you are not likely to be considered a top account by a large logistics company, and therefore are not likely to receive much attention or even be able to take advantage of programs that may be in place for $ 1,000,000 spenders. If you encounter a problem with a shipment you may get lost in the shuffle.
Licensing: This may not be well known but the transportation industry is regulated. Every business that wish to provide transportation services are required to be licensed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. In addition to being responsible for the safety of the roads, drivers, and your merchandise, the FMCSA requires freight brokers, freight forwarders, and other businesses that don’t own trucks to be licensed and bonded. This is to protect the integrity of the industry. Optionally logistics companies can opt to be members of the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA). This organization is committed to a code of ethics to be followed.
Safety: Recently the Federal government has tightened up safety standards to reduce accident risk. This means that drivers and transportation carriers are scored on their performance. Drivers who don’t meet certain scores can have their license revoked and no longer be authorized to transport your goods. This is something you may never become aware of but a reputable logistics company will only work with drivers that are approved to transport goods safely.
Pricing – Cheapest isn’t always best: When shopping around for a logistics company, the company that provides a freight quote that is substantially below other providers may be doing so for a reason. While not always that case, the logistics company me be working with unlicensed carriers who are willing to work for less in order to pay the bills. Or, they may be quoting an unrealistically low price in order to earn your business without being able to deliver a truck, in hopes you will stay with them and pay a market price to actually get your shipment moved.
A quality logistics company such as RM Logistics is large enough to handle most or all of your needs yet small enough to provide you with personalized service so your interests will be kept in mind. The will only work with properly licensed carriers and are members of the TIA so you know you are working with a reputable company. RM Logistics also offers competitive pricing so they are a good option for your short list of logistics companies.
Alan Jurysta is a freight broker for RM Logistics.