Establish Your Roles from the Start
Ensure that the setting and agreement from the freight forwarder outlines your requirements accurately right from the start. Specified roles and responsibilities between you and your freight forwarder will promote a good, healthy partnership and make future exchanges much easier.
You can easily resolve any misunderstandings that might occur during your partnership by establishing a good relationship from the get-go. This way you will also help to set and document the standards that you expect the freight forwarder to deliver on.
Convey Your Priorities
You can ensure that your freight forwarding partnership is best suited to your needs by communicating what your priorities are. This will also make the shipping process easier.
For example, if you’re looking for the most cost-effective shipping method, transport by ship might be the best suited, whereas if you’re looking for the most time-efficient shipment, air transport would be the best option.
A freight forwarder could direct and advise you based on what you require, including processes like container type and distribution options in port, but you would first need to make your needs known.
Avoid Last Minute Shipments
The shipment process will go much smoother if you plan for it well in advance. Last-minute shipments often lead to complications such as finding space on vessels, booking the shipments and so on and so forth. You could also end up paying more or be subject to delayed use of a container.
Be Clear About Your Storage/Shipment Requirements
As a business, you need a clearly defined guideline for what your needs are. This includes information about the types of services you would require from your freight forwarder, transport vessels, and average shipment volumes.
Another important tip is to acquaint yourself with the terms and conditions of freight forwarding, as well as industry terms and legal framework so that you could liaise with the freight forwarder more efficiently.
Strive for Consistency
It’s vital to be transparent with your freight forwarder, so inform them if you require a frequent and consistent shipment. This goes hand in hand with planning, and when you communicate and establish time frames in this way, it allows the freight forwarder to offer you competitive quotes.
Use Online Tools
You should have access to a lot of online resources when using a good freight forwarder. These resources ensure easy and convenient service to you.
Among other things, you will have access to cargo tracking tools that would allow you to communicate with your clients and plan your business activity around the expected receipt of the shipment.
After your account has been set up, you will also have access to other functions such as placing orders, requesting quotes, viewing documents, reading shipping reports and paying invoices.
Focus on Long Term Relationships
Your partnership with your freight forwarder should function like any other genuine business relationship. If your only concern is the lowest prices on a per-shipment basis, you will soon realise that is not a reliable way to approach a business relationship.
Treating your freight forwarding company like it’s part of your logistics team will ensure that increased transit speeds and negotiated volume rates will ensue, as the freight forwarder becomes more accustomed to your requirements.