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Getting the Most Out of Your Freight Network - Part II

Posted 1:27 PM by

The July 4th holiday has come and gone once again, which means many Americans are back to work after what was likely an extended holiday weekend. This is especially true for every truck driver across the country. As of July 1, the U.S. Court of Appeals had yet to rule on a lawsuit against the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's hours of service rule, meaning drivers must now include two periods from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. before they can start a new work week.

As I mentioned in a previous post (Getting the Most Out of Your Freight Network), this will definitely impact the industry, but no one is certain to what extent. This also comes at a time when quality drivers are already at a premium as the industry-wide driver shortage continues (Driver Shortage Continues Throughout Trucking Industry). These circumstances (coupled with the American Trucking Associations' recent freight forecast calling for a 20 percent increase in total freight volume through 2024) are turning into a situation where demand for freight is outpacing supply. This would normally be great for carriers, but only for those that fully understand their freight network and the impact of taking on new lanes.

Many carriers are going to have the opportunity to bid on more work and may already be in a position where they have more loads than they can move with their own fleet. What many carriers don’t realize is that all lanes are not created equal, or in some instances, even profitable. Each lane in your network includes several factors to consider. A few basic factors include:

  • Rate – Is your company receiving the market rate for a specific lane? If not, is it above or below the market and is there a way to communicate this to your customer?
  • Cost – Is your company truly factoring in the cost per lane? This includes all fixed and variable costs to move each load.

There are multiple additional factors to include and several freight network tools available that carriers can use to assist in this analysis. If freight volume rises as expected, successful carriers will need to truly understand their freight network in order to fully optimize it and company assets. 

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Katz, Sapper & Miller’s Transportation Services Group is one of the largest and most experienced in the country. We work with more than 100 publicly and privately held carriers throughout North America to keep their business moving in the right direction. Learn more

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