- Leah Barrier
Air Freight Optimization vs. Air Freight Management - and Why You Need a Freight Forwarder Who Excel
Optimization: the action of making the best or most effective use of a situation or resource.
Management: the process of dealing with or controlling things.
It seems obvious that to have a top-notch supply chain, your freight forwarder needs to both “manage” and fully “optimize” your air freight shipment. Not one or the other, but both, efficiently. In quick comparison these two terms seem closely related, but upon further review it is easy to see that they are complimentary; not interchangeable. Optimization by default eradicates emotional error. To be fully optimized means to utilize automation in some areas. In other words, automated work flow (in reference to optimization in this case) yields proper management. All this is derived from improving certain aspects of air freight shipments.
There are many steps in the air freight shipment industry that warrant optimization. The supply chain procedure in general is so precise that even the smallest mistake in detail could derail an entire shipment. Optimizing your air cargo shipments should be labeled a high priority. The following tips are structured to help you get the biggest “bang for your buck” so to speak.
Partner with the right freight forwarding providers.
Employ updated shipping software.
Utilize correct service levels based on your shipment dimensions.
Double, triple, quadruple check all of your documentation.
Manage customs through your freight forwarder.
If at all possible, manage payments through one party.
Set up shipment alerts.
Maximize pallet space.
While shipments are the priority and sole reason for optimization and the overall need for supply chain management, we all want to feel like we paid a good price for service. Enter, air freight cost optimization. Shippers are seemingly gravitating more towards air export in comparison to ocean export if solely based on the speed of arrivals. The problem with this is that you often pay for the expedited convenience. The good news is there are ways to optimize air cargo procedures to save on overall costs.
Outsource shipping management to a reliable freight forwarding company.
Ship off-peak days.
Be more flexible with carrier pick up times.
Prioritize shipments (most urgent, send by air freight).
Request all possible delivery times.
Ship high volume.
Negotiate a long-term agreement with your logistics provider.
While the aforementioned subjects scarcely cover the vast array of all that is involved in air freight export, it is a general start to optimizing your air cargo shipment. It is crucial to find a logistics partner that is savvy enough to optimize your export in every possible way.
Optimize first. Then manage. This is the order in which optimization vs. management prioritizes. Again, it is not enough to work with a freight forwarder who specializes in just one or the other. Finding an air freight specialist who can optimize your freight and then properly manage the chain is imperative. Management is crucial to ensure the due diligence of your optimization is carried out seamlessly. If a problem arises, air freight management handles the situation. This is often something optimization could have never seen. Management is the oversight of work previously set in motion.
If you have any questions regarding your air freight export shipment, global shipments, optimization, or management pertaining to your supply chain in general, please feel free to reach out to us HERE.
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