Utilize Expedited Transportation to Enhance Your Supply Chain

Posted by admin on Feb 17, 2016 8:00:00 AM


Mention "airfreight" and your accountant’s ears perk up immediately. The operations manager wants to know what operational mishap occurred that would require using airfreight… and the owner wants to know who's going to pay for it.

Although airfreight is more expensive, multiple shipment options, such as next day, second day and deferred, and aircraft efficiency, make air cargo a viable component for many supply chains. Freight carriers that offer ground expedited service are also an option to meet your delivery parameters. Adding an expedited service provider to your approved carrier options is beneficial to your supply chain in several ways. 3rd party logistics companies can be a valuable resource for these services.

Response Time 

In today's "Just in Time" environment, your company can quickly respond to holiday and seasonal demands, production line malfunctions and raw material shortages. An addition benefit is the reduction of inventory carrying costs. This all translates to a supply chain management system that is efficient and flexible while having the ability to meet most and material delivery challenge.

Having the ability and preparedness to meet the challenge of an expedited delivery will certainly be a benefit for your organization’s top line sales figures. If you have the resources to meet that critical delivery window and your competition does not, it’s easy to see who will make the sale.

Time and Temperature Sensitive Products 

Sometimes you just need it there in a hurry. Sometimes it needs to be protected from temperature fluctuations in either direction. Sometimes you need both.

I remember a company that printed inserts for retail circulars. They would need to make and/or add changes in the eleventh hour, requiring expedited, and team service to deliver overnight from the east coast to Illinois. The transit time and deadline were just about the same in most cases. If the product arrived late, the shipment was worthless. The sales were lost, and the company had lost money on the transportation to the customer and the return or destruction of the product. 

A pharmaceutical company, while manufacturing a drug, has to transport the active ingredient to the production facility. Not only does it have to deliver direct, the trailer must maintain a temperature of 38 degrees with an allowable variance of + or - 1/2 degree centigrade. A deviation of any more than the allowable rendered the $250,000 shipment useless because it is ultimately intended for public consumption. These are extreme examples of supply chain management challenges. The difference between that defines a supply chain expert is the ability to accept and be prepared to meet these challenges.


The technology available today really takes the anxiety out of an expedited shipment. Satellite tracking is commonly available on today's newer equipment. Having the ability to send and receive real-time information on weather and traffic conditions allows for reroute planning. Electronic driver logs ensure both drivers are compliant with the hours of service legislation. There is also technology which can monitor and immediately report temperature deviations on temperature control shipments. Similar technology is available for high value shipments which will monitor unscheduled door openings on a trailer.

Cost is just one factor to consider when evaluating freight service options. Inventory carrying costs, and the sales opportunities associated with being first to market are important considerations for shippers. The use of more efficient trucks and planes has made more palatable the once frightening expedited cargo costs. Finding a provider who offers access to the benefits of multi-mode shipping options can be of great benefit to your supply chain. In today's economic climate, shippers need to calculate cost of a particular shipment to reach the delivery goals as efficiently as possible. 

The transportation experts at can provide excellent guidance for your organization. Contact one of our logistics professionals today for a no obligation freight review. 

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Topics: Third Party Logistics, Maximizing Routing Efficiencies