The phrase â€œtime is moneyâ€ has never been more relevant for transportation and purchasing managers than it is today. Even though transportation costs have declined in recent months, transportation managers still face added pressure to streamline the time-consuming and cumbersome tasks associated with strategically sourcing transportation services and capacity from carriers, third-party logistics providers and other providers.
Leading analyst firm Gartner Research states that â€œwhile transportation costs have abated, the importance of effectively managing transportation is as strong as ever. Even with the weak economic climate, Gartner finds strong interest in transportation-focused technologies, particularly those that target costs such as multimodal transportation management systemsâ€1. For this reason, many companies looking to cut costs, improve operational efficiency and positively impact bottom-line performance are transitioning to more efficient, automated methods for transportation sourcing.
â€œIn todayâ€™s competitive environment, companies must rapidly complete the transportation procurement cycle in order to lock in rates and capacity, as well as ensure shipments are consistently delivered on time and within reduced cycle windows,â€ said David Johnston, senior vice president, manufacturing and wholesale distribution, JDA Software. â€œTime and money spent on daily planning and execution are wasted if the supporting rates and commitments are not current or improperly monitored.â€
While advanced logistics sourcing is well positioned to optimize the transportation procurement lifecycle, companies should be discriminating when selecting a solution. Below, JDA Software outlines the key capabilities that should be evaluated to ensure that true ROI is delivered:
Initial Bid Execution and Analysis: Web-based solutions provide a community for gathering lane, price and capacity information, as well as executing bids with logistics providers. After receiving bids, shippers can efficiently evaluate, rationalize and optimize those bids to intelligently choose providers based on cost, service and business preferences. Once the ideal scenario has been determined, shippers can provide a collaborative framework for rate adjustment and negotiation of logistics contract terms. As a result, workflows can be catered to the companyâ€™s business process, ensuring a streamlined and automated contract negotiation process.
Contract Negotiation, Execution & Integration: A truly comprehensive solution will enable a collaborative framework for key stakeholders to participate in the entire contract negotiation lifecycle â€“ from draft preview, approval, in progress, amendment requested and final approval. Once negotiations are finalized, next-generation solutions automate the sometimes tedious process of contract execution â€“ creating re-usable contract templates, digitizing signatures and securely storing contracts â€“ freeing up employeesâ€™ time to focus on more critical tasks. Finally, if the data obtained throughout the procurement lifecycle is not properly integrated into daily business operations, the value of newly negotiated contracts can be delayed. An ideal solution will offer an entirely closed loop process, including the critical step of integrating data obtained â€“ such as selected rates and capacity commitments â€“ into the daily planning and execution of the transportation management system.
Ongoing Support: The need to adjust transportation and logistics rates arises when there are increases or decreases requested by the service provider, unanticipated network changes or the addition of new lanes or volume fluctuations. Advanced logistics solutions allow shippers to administer all rate adjustments through the same collaborative framework used to manage and administer their original transportation contracts. Contract amendments will be automatically created and executed, and rate adjustments will be seamlessly integrated into the planning and execution environment.
Flexibility to Address Todayâ€™s Complex Transportation Needs: In assessing a logistics sourcing solution, executives must be sure that it can address the complexities of both their domestic and global transportation networks. Advanced sourcing solutions provide the tools and components to handle the numerous requirements for procuring, optimizing and administering transportation and logistics contracts. The ideal solution should address issues such as standardization across multiple modes, seasonality and spikes in demand, around-the-clock access and flexible bid configuration.
During each phase of the transportation contract management lifecycle, an advanced logistics sourcing solution provides valuable operational advantages and helps shippers keep pace with the constantly changing market. These solutions benefit shippers and carriers alike, offering a win-win solution to the long-standing problem of lowering transportation costs while providing consistent deliveries with the optimal number of suppliers.
To learn more about how JDA Software helps its customers implement advanced logistics sourcing strategies, please visit www.jda.com.
1 Gartner, Inc. “Hype Cycle for Transportation, 2009″ by C. Dwight Klappich et al, July 24, 2009
About JDA Software Group, Inc.
JDAÂ® Software Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: JDAS) is the worldâ€™s leading supply chain solutions provider, helping companies optimize operations and improve profitability. JDA drives business efficiency for its global customer base of more than 5,800 retailers, manufacturers, wholesaler-distributors and services industries companies through deep domain expertise and innovative solutions. JDAâ€™s combination of unmatched services, together with its integrated yet modular solutions for merchandising, supply chain planning and execution and revenue management, leverage the strong heritage and knowledge capital of market leaders including Manugistics, E3, Intactix and Arthur. When supply chain results matter, companies turn to JDA. For more information about JDA, visit www.jda.com or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +1 800 479 7382 / +1 480 308 3000.
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We do not believe this press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Nevertheless, if remarks in this press release are considered to be â€œforward-looking” or to have forward-looking implications (such as potential benefits from implementing certain advanced logistics sourcing solutions), we would remind our investors and prospective investors that future events may involve risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include the fact that if companies are in fact making such demands they may not select JDAâ€™s solutions to meet their requirements. Other risks and uncertainties that may affect our business are detailed from time to time in the â€œRisk Factors” section of our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. As a result of these and other risks, actual results may differ materially from those predicted. We undertake no obligation to update information in this release.
â€œJDAâ€ is a trademark or registered trademark of JDA Software Group, Inc. Any trade, product or service name referenced in this document using the name â€œJDAâ€ is a trademark and/or property of JDA Software Group, Inc.
JDA Software Group, Inc.
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