Author Archives: The FLI Team

  1. Freight Management Best Practices for Less Than Truckload Claims


    Claims management is one of most challenging processes in freight management.


    The claims process for less-than-truckload (LTL) shipments is challenging for freight management. LTL freight carriers transport smaller shipments from multiple shippers on a single truck. Like any shipping method, cargo can be damaged, lost, or delayed during transit. Misunderstanding the rigors of the LTL freight environment can be a barrier to adequately preparing a shipment.

    An LTL terminal, freight terminal, or distribution center, is a crucial component of the LTL transportation network. These terminals serve as intermediate hubs where shipments are sorted, consolidated, and transferred between different trucks. When shipments arrive at the terminal, they are sorted based on final destinations and consolidated onto outgoing trucks. This consolidation process optimizes the use of space and ensures multiple shipments can be efficiently transported together. An LTL freight shipment may be loaded and unloaded a dozen times when traveling coast to coast. Many LTL terminals employ cross-docking strategies. Cross-docking is a freight management practice where inbound shipments are quickly unloaded from one truck and loaded onto another with minimal or no storage. This approach reduces handling and storage time, improving overall efficiency, but can lead to wear and tear on the freight.

    Once the LTL shipment reaches the consignee, how the shipment is received can impact the claims process. Taking time to inspect inbound cargo properly is an essential. Visible damage should be noted on all copies of the delivery receipt at the time of delivery. Recipients of shipments throughout the process should avoid signing “subject to inspection” as this is not considered a valid notation and is treated as not signing at all. Failure to make a notation on the delivery receipt of damage or a shortage is considered a concealed claim. A concealed claim also applies to damage, or shortage discovered after receipt. When filing a claim, reports must be made to the carrier within five days, supported by evidence that the damage/shortage occurred while in the carrier’s possession.


     The top three challenges in freight management when it comes to claims and the claims process are as follows:

    1. Proper packaging. The NMFTA (National Motor Freight Traffic Association) dictates packaging and labeling requirements on all commodities.
    2. Proper classification. The NMFTA dictates classifications for all commodities. Many are density-based and require dimensions along with the weight.
    3. Carrier liabilities. Each LTL carrier has their own liability coverage, which can vary by customer and commodity. 


    Proper Packaging.

    Addressing packaging is one of the most impactful things you can do as a shipper to protect your product against the LTL environment. Think of the worst-case scenario when designing and packaging commodities. LTL freight will be moving through multiple terminals and handled numerous times. Take photos of the freight before shipping to include the shipping label. These photos will prove the shipment was in good condition at pick up and provide a point of reference if the shipment is lost. Proper banding and shrink wrap onto pallets are critical. If using a skeleton crate, make sure the cross beams are close enough together to prevent damage. A proper crate is fully enclosed and can provide the most protection. Be sure to consider impact protection: Styrofoam, bubble wrap, or corner boards. Avoid any overhang of the product on the pallets. During the claims process, it is helpful to have photos of the box certificate, indicating weight limitations and bursting strength. The boxes should be stamped with the crush strength. Always ensure the heaviest items are on the bottom of the handling unit.


    Proper Classification.

    The carrier liability is based on the freight class. When LTL freight is mis-classed, the carrier can decline the claim due to improper classification, or there could be lower claim dollars.


    Carrier Liabilities.

    Each carrier creates a set of rules called a tariff. The tariff includes limitations and levels of coverage should a shipment be damaged. For instance, a carrier may cover $10 per pound unless (depending on the commodity) the shipment is uncrated, in which there would be a $2 per pound coverage. Tariffs change by carrier, shipper, commodity, and packaging. Tariffs can and should be negotiated with the carrier. Understanding all the limitations is crucial to being proactive when selecting which carrier to leverage for a shipment. 

    Small Steps Go a Long Way to Prevent Claims | FreightWaves


    One of the biggest mistakes shippers must correct when processing claims directly with carriers is in paperwork details. Taking the time to ensure all the proper paperwork and information is gathered before submitting a claim can make a difference in both the timeliness and resolution of the claim. Along with the Bill of Lading and original invoice, include pictures and a summary of steps to resolve the issue. 


    Here are the best steps you can take as a shipper/receiver of goods utilizing the LTL freight network:

    1. Eliminate the back and forth of the claims process by providing all paperwork and evidence upfront. 
    2. Inspect shipments on arrival and correctly notate the delivery receipt. 
    3. Package the product with the worst-case scenario in mind.


    Need some claims support? Following these tips, FLI has reduced LTL freight claims by nearly 30%. Let us help decrease your claims and resolve any potential claims quickly and efficiently! 


  2. 3PL Logistics Perspective on the Top Challenges to 100% Fulfillment of Your Supply Chain

    Supply chain fulfillment is a complex and multifaceted process. Effective management is essential for businesses to meet customer expectations, gain a competitive advantage, and drive overall success. Several factors can hinder successful fulfillment in the supply chain. Part one of this series identified the stages and strategies to gain a competitive advantage and realize growth.

    As a 3PL logistics provider, we have the opportunity to see across a large number of businesses. Here are the top three challenges we see most with our customers:

    1. Lack of Visibility and Communication: Limited visibility into inventory, orders, and logistics can hinder fulfillment. A lack of real-time information about inventory levels, order status, or transportation delays can make it difficult to respond promptly to customer inquiries or make informed decisions. Poor communication among supply chain partners, such as suppliers, warehouses, and carriers, can also disrupt fulfillment. A centralized Transportation Management System (TMS) can provide the needed support for this challenge.
    2. Quality Control Issues: Inadequate quality control measures can result in defective or damaged products reaching customers. Quality control issues can lead to returns, replacements, and dissatisfied consumers. Ensuring rigorous quality checks at various stages of the fulfillment process, including receiving, warehousing, and packaging, is crucial. As a 3PL logistics provider, transit times and claims are the most frustrating quality control issues we overcome for customers.
    3. Complex Global Supply Chains: In the case of businesses with global supply chains, factors such as customs regulations, international trade restrictions, geopolitical events, or currency fluctuations can create complexities and delays in fulfillment. Managing documentation, compliance, and coordination across multiple regions and stakeholders can be challenging.


    Other common challenges that businesses may encounter:

    • Inventory Issues: Insufficient or excessive inventory can disrupt fulfillment. Inadequate inventory levels may lead to stockouts and delayed deliveries, while excess inventory ties up capital and increases carrying costs. Poor inventory visibility, inaccurate forecasting, and supply chain disruptions can contribute to these issues.
    • Demand Variability: Fluctuating customer demand patterns can pose challenges for fulfillment. Unexpected spikes in demand or seasonality may strain inventory levels and logistics capacity, potentially leading to delays or unfulfilled orders. Inaccurate demand forecasting or poor communication between sales and operations teams can exacerbate this problem.
    • Supply Chain Disruptions: Disruptions such as natural disasters, supplier failures, labor strikes, or transportation disruptions can significantly impact fulfillment operations. These disruptions can disrupt the flow of goods, delay deliveries, or result in product shortages. Having contingency plans, alternative suppliers, and robust risk management strategies can help mitigate the impact of such disruptions. An aligned 3PL logistics provider can be an essential partner in successfully handling potential disruptions.
    • Inefficient Processes: Inefficient fulfillment processes can lead to delays, errors, and increased costs. Bottlenecks in order processing, picking, packing, or shipping can slow the fulfillment cycle and compromise customer satisfaction. Lack of automation, poor communication, and manual errors can contribute to process inefficiencies.
    • Lack of Scalability: Inability to scale operations to meet growing demand or sudden surges can impede fulfillment. Businesses may need help managing freight efficiently if systems, processes, or infrastructure are not designed to accommodate increased volume or changing customer needs.

    Addressing these challenges requires proactive planning, robust systems and processes, effective communication, and continuous improvement efforts. By leveraging technology, data analytics, and collaboration across the supply chain network, businesses can enhance fulfillment capabilities and deliver exceptional customer experiences. Large companies with in-house supply chain leadership can be proactive in addressing challenges. Mid-market and smaller shippers may need more resources and expertise to achieve successful fulfillment.

    Mid-market businesses can leverage their freight management to gain a competitive advantage and drive growth. Here are some critical strategies for effectively leveraging the supply chain:

    1. Streamline Operations: Focus on optimizing internal operations within the supply chain. Identify bottlenecks, inefficiencies, and areas for improvement, and implement streamlined processes and automation where possible. Streamlined operations can reduce costs, increase efficiency, and enhance overall supply chain performance.
    2. Enhance Inventory Management: Implement robust inventory management practices to ensure optimal inventory levels. Utilize inventory management software to track stock levels, monitor demand patterns, and implement just-in-time (JIT) or lean inventory principles. Enhanced inventory management can reduce carrying costs, minimize stockouts, and improve order fulfillment.
    3. Collaborate with Suppliers: Build strong relationships with suppliers to enhance the reliability and responsiveness of the supply chain. Collaborate closely with key suppliers to improve demand forecasting, share information, and coordinate production schedules. Supplier collaboration can lead to better inventory planning, shorter lead times, and improved product availability.
    4. Leverage Technology: Embrace technology solutions that can optimize supply chain operations. Implement an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system to integrate and streamline various aspects of the supply chain, such as inventory management, order processing, and logistics. Additionally, consider adopting advanced analytics, AI-powered forecasting tools, and supply chain visibility platforms to gain insights, improve decision-making, and enhance efficiency.
    5. Focus on Customer-centricity: Align the supply chain strategy with customer expectations. Understand customer preferences, demand patterns, and service requirements. Tailor freight management processes to meet customer needs, such as fast and accurate order fulfillment, flexible delivery options, or personalized experiences. This customer-centric approach can enhance customer satisfaction, loyalty, and differentiation in the market.
    6. Optimize Logistics and Transportation: Efficiently manage logistics and transportation processes to minimize costs and improve delivery times. Evaluate transportation options, negotiate favorable contracts with carriers, and optimize routing and scheduling. Implement a TMS to gain better visibility into shipments, optimize routes, and track deliveries in real-time. The right 3PL logistics provider will work with you to realize these goals.
    7. Continuous Improvement: Foster a culture of constant improvement within the supply chain. Regularly assess performance metrics, gather feedback from customers and stakeholders, and identify areas for enhancement. Encourage cross-functional collaboration and knowledge sharing to drive innovation and implement best practices throughout the supply chain.
    8. Mitigate Risks: Identify and manage risks that can disrupt the supply chain. Develop risk management strategies to mitigate the impact of potential disruptions, such as supply shortages, natural disasters, or geopolitical events. Diversify the supplier base, establish contingency plans, and maintain effective communication channels with key stakeholders.

    Learn More at Supply & Demand Chain Executive

    By leveraging the supply chain effectively, mid-market businesses can improve operational efficiency, enhance customer satisfaction, reduce costs, and create a competitive edge in the market. It’s vital to assess the unique needs and capabilities of the business and tailor the supply chain strategies accordingly. One of the fastest ways to optimize your supply chain is to partner with a 3PL provider whose expertise is aligned with your business size and industry.  Fine-tuned processes lead to efficiencies and success, a solid network of partnerships, and simple, effective technology that grows with you.

    Let’s keep the conversation going!

  3. Fulfillment of Your Supply Chain + Freight Management

    Supply chain fulfillment is a critical aspect of business operations that focuses on the efficient and timely delivery of products or services to customers. It encompasses all the processes involved in freight management from the point of origin to the final destination, ensuring that customer orders are fulfilled accurately and on time.

    The supply chain fulfillment process typically involves various stages, including order processing, inventory management, warehousing, transportation, and delivery. Let’s explore each of these stages in more detail:

    1. Order Processing: This stage begins when a customer places an order. It involves shipment detail capture, verification, and payment processing. Preparing an order for fulfillment also includes tasks like picking and packing. Read Shopify’s Definition & Guide to Fulfillment.
    2. Inventory Management: Effective inventory management is crucial for supply chain fulfillment. It involves tracking and managing product availability, storage, and movement within the supply chain network. Ensuring adequate stock levels meet customer demand without excessive overstocking or stockouts.
    3. Warehousing: Warehouses are vital in supply chain fulfillment by providing product storage facilities. Warehouses receive, store, and manage inventory, ensuring products are readily available. They may also perform additional functions like quality control, labeling, and packaging.
    4. Transportation: Transportation is responsible for moving freight from the warehouse to the customer’s location. It involves selecting the appropriate means of transportation, such as trucks, ships, planes, or a combination of these. Factors like distance, speed, cost, and the nature of the goods determine the mode of transport.
    5. Delivery: Delivery is the final stage of fulfillment or freight management. The product arrives at the consignee on time and intact. Claims administration or freight recovery will step in if damages or loss occur. Delivery services can include last-mile handling to a doorstep or distribution to retail stores. All must be well-coordinated to ensure a smooth and timely transaction.

    Businesses often employ various technologies and strategies to ensure smooth freight management, such as:

    • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems: These integrated software solutions help manage and streamline supply chain operations by providing real-time inventory, orders, and logistics visibility.
    • Warehouse Management Systems (WMS): WMS software optimizes warehouse operations, including inventory tracking, order picking, and automated workflows, to improve efficiency and accuracy.
    • Transportation Management Systems (TMS): TMS software facilitates the planning, execution, and optimization of transportation operations, enabling businesses to select the most cost-effective and timely shipping options. WMS and TMS systems can be integrated with ERP systems to limit discrepancies and add automation.
    • Just-in-Time (JIT) and Lean principles: These approaches focus on reducing waste and improving efficiency by delivering products or services precisely when and where they are needed, minimizing inventory holding costs, and improving customer satisfaction.
    • Data analytics and forecasting: Leveraging data and predictive analytics helps businesses anticipate customer demand, optimize inventory levels, and identify potential bottlenecks or disruptions in the supply chain.
    • Freight management partners: A network of over-the-road carriers, air freight carriers, ocean carriers, warehouses, and 3PL logistics providers can provide the strength needed to ensure the efficient and timely delivery of products.

    Supply chain fulfillment is a complex and multifaceted process. Effective management is essential for businesses to meet customer expectations, maintain competitive advantage, and drive overall success. Several factors can hinder successful fulfillment in the supply chain. Part two of this series will share the top challenges and essential strategies to gain a competitive advantage and drive growth.

    We want to hear what is working for you today! Share below or contact us to keep the conversation going.

  4. A Guide to LTL Freight

    Sometimes it’s important to slow down from the speed of the supply chain to focus on the basics. Here is your quick guide to less-than-truckload (LTL) freight. With LTL freight, the shipper pays only for the space their shipment occupies on a truck rather than the entire truck’s cost, making it a more cost-effective option for smaller loads.

    LTL freight consolidates multiple shipments from different shipping locations into one truck for transportation. LTL freight is used when a load is too large for parcel delivery but not enough to require an entire truck. Shipments are typically consolidated at a terminal (or various terminals) and sorted based on the final destination.

    A key service of 3PL providers is managing an LTL freight network. A 3PL’s relationships with LTL carriers are critical in the service of shippers and manufacturers.

    National vs Regional LTL Carriers

    National and regional LTL carriers are two types of freight carriers that offer similar services but have some significant differences.

    National LTL carriers have an extensive network of terminals and trucks that operate across the country, enabling them to transport freight to almost any destination within the United States. These carriers typically have more resources and capabilities than regional carriers, such as a larger fleet of trucks and a more comprehensive range of services, including expedited and guaranteed delivery options. National carriers also tend to have higher shipping volumes, which can result in more frequent pickups and deliveries.

    In contrast, regional LTL carriers have a smaller operating area, typically covering a specific region or group of states. They may have fewer terminals and trucks than national carriers, but they offer more localized service and can provide more personalized attention to their customers. Regional carriers often have faster transit times within their service area and can offer more flexible scheduling options for pickups and deliveries.

    Both national and regional LTL freight carriers can provide direct and indirect service. Direct service indicates that the shipment will remain on the carrier’s trailers until final delivery. However, the carrier may use a partner carrier for the “final mile” or last leg of delivery. Indirect service implies that the shipment will transfer across different carriers, also known as an interline shipment.

    LTL freight inherently results in longer transit times than full truckload services. LTL transit times are always an estimate provided by the carrier, as multiple delaying factors can occur. It’s helpful to remember that rural deliveries often involve indirect service, which means an extended transit time.

    There can also be a technology gap between national LTL carriers and regional LTL carriers; national carriers typically have more advanced technology capabilities and resources due to their larger size and scale. National LTL carriers usually have more sophisticated technology, including advanced transportation management systems (TMS), real-time shipment tracking, and automated shipment processing. They may also have more robust data analytics and reporting capabilities, which can help optimize shipping operations and improve overall efficiency.

    In contrast, regional LTL carriers may have limited technology resources, with fewer advanced TMS systems and tracking capabilities. They may also rely more on manual processes, which can be less efficient and more prone to errors.

    However, this technology gap is narrowing as regional carriers increasingly invest in technology to remain competitive and improve their services. Many regional carriers are implementing TMS and other advanced technologies to streamline operations and provide more reliable, efficient shipping services.

    Follow FreightWaves for LTL Industry News


    LTL Freight Pricing Strategies

    Both national and regional LTL carriers typically offer two types of pricing options for shipping: universal pricing and customer-specific pricing (CSP).

    Universal pricing, also known as blanket pricing, is a standardized rate for LTL freight that applies to all customers. This rate is typically based on the shipment’s weight, dimensions, and distance. Universal pricing allows carriers to set consistent rates across their entire network, regardless of the customer’s location or shipping volume.

    In contrast, customer-specific pricing, also known as negotiated pricing or contract pricing, is a customized rate that is arranged for the individual customer. This rate is based on shipping volume, frequency, routes, and the relationship between the shipper or 3PL provider and the carrier. Customer-specific pricing may be lower than universal pricing for high-volume customers or customers with consistent shipping patterns. 3PL providers can select the most appropriate national and regional LTL carriers for a shipper or manufacturer and negotiate the pricing with the carrier.

    Dynamic pricing is a pricing strategy that some LTL carriers use to adjust rates based on current market conditions and demand. Unlike universal or customer-specific pricing, which typically remains fixed for a set period, dynamic pricing can change in real time based on fuel prices, capacity utilization, and market demand. Dynamic pricing allows LTL carriers to respond quickly to changes in the market and adjust rates to optimize their revenue and profitability. For example, carriers with excess capacity on a particular route may lower their rates to attract more shippers and fill their trucks. Conversely, if demand exceeds capacity, the carrier may increase its rates to maximize its revenue.

    Dynamic pricing with LTL freight can benefit both carriers and shippers. Carriers can optimize their revenue by adjusting rates based on current market conditions. At the same time, shippers can take advantage of lower rates during periods of low demand or negotiate better rates during peak shipping seasons.

    However, dynamic pricing can also create uncertainty for shippers, as rates can fluctuate quickly and without warning. To mitigate this risk, shippers may need to closely monitor market conditions and work closely with their carriers to negotiate stable shipment pricing. The right 3PL provider will understand your business objectives and work with you to solidify an LTL pricing strategy.


    Accessorials and LTL Management

    Accessorials are services or charges added to an LTL shipment beyond the base rate. LTL carriers typically offer these services to provide additional value or accommodate specific shipping needs. Accessorials can vary by carrier. 3PL providers can negotiate accessorial fees as part of the pricing agreement.

    Common LTL accessorials include:

    1. Liftgate Service: This specialized service uses a hydraulic lift to load or unload shipments from the back of a truck, typically used when a shipping location does not have a loading dock or equipment to unload.
    2. Inside Delivery: This service involves the carrier delivering the shipment inside the recipient’s building or room, beyond the standard dock or curbside delivery.
    3. Residential Delivery: This service involves the delivery of a shipment to any portion of a property with a residential building, which may require specialized equipment or personnel.
    4. Oversize or Overweight Freight: This service involves additional charges for shipments that exceed standard size or weight limits.
    5. Hazardous Materials: This service involves additional charges and specialized handling requirements for shipments that contain hazardous materials.
    6. Appointment Delivery: This service involves scheduling a specific delivery window to ensure someone can receive the shipment.
    7. Storage-In-Transit: This service involves the carrier storing the shipment temporarily before final delivery.
    8. Limited Access Delivery: This service involves delivery to locations that are difficult to access, such as military bases, airports, construction sites, or other like locations.

    Applying the appropriate accessorial(s) upfront is essential to avoid unexpected charges after delivery of LTL freight. The cost of accessorials can impact carrier selection for a load.

    There are ways that shippers and manufacturers can be proactive when it comes to accessorial fees. Here are some ways to avoid or minimize accessorial expenses when shipping LTL:

    1. Plan ahead: Communicate your shipping needs with the carrier or your 3PL provider. Know what services are required for the shipment and confirm that the carrier can accommodate those needs before scheduling the shipment.
    2. Choose the suitable carrier: Select a carrier specializing in the shipment type being sent, with experience handling specific accessorial services. Some carriers may offer better rates or include certain accessorial services in the base rate, so shopping around and comparing options is essential. This is an area your 3PL provider can offer much value.
    3. Optimize shipment packaging: Properly package and label LTL freight according to the carrier’s requirements. This can reduce the need for additional services such as liftgate service, inside delivery, or special handling fees.
    4. Avoid residential addresses: Whenever possible, ship LTL freight to commercial or business addresses instead of residential addresses, as residential deliveries often require additional fees for specialized equipment and personnel.
    5. Avoid limited access locations: Avoid shipping to locations that are difficult to access, such as construction sites, military bases, or airports, as these locations may require additional fees for limited access delivery.
    6. Use standard size and weight: Ensure that the shipment complies with standard size and weight limits, as oversize or overweight shipments may incur additional charges. A certified scale can go a long way in avoiding costly LTL freight reweigh charges.
    7. Optimize loading and unloading: Minimize the time required for loading and unloading by having the shipment adequately prepared and ready for pick up and ensure adequate space and equipment for efficient loading and unloading.

    Shippers can minimize accessorial fees when shipping LTL freight by following these tips, reducing shipping costs and improving profitability.

    This guide is the start of understanding the language of LTL freight management.

    What questions do you still have when it comes to LTL freight?

    Let’s continue the conversation today!

  5. What Are the Benefits of 3PL Providers?

    Third-party logistics providers, or 3PL providers, offer a way to support your supply chain operations. Whether they act as a supplemental part of your freight management team or as a partner to outsource your logistics, a 3PL provider can help leverage supply chain solutions at a grander scale. Along with freight services such as truckload brokerage, less-than-truckload or partial truckload shipments, customs clearance, and international freight management, 3PL providers offer support as part of your freight solution. Below you’ll find a high-level explanation of 3PL services.  

    Mary O’Connell on What Shippers Expect from 3PLs

    Truckload Services: Grow Your Capacity Overnight

    Truckload brokerage is a middleman between carriers and shippers. The broker finds a carrier to move the goods, negotiate a competitive rate, arrange pickup and delivery, and handle billing and payment. You need a network that fits well with your footprint—no matter how big or small. Depending on the size of the load, shipments can move by full or partial truckload. If you don’t have trucks or drivers, many options exist!

    Less-Than-Truckload (LTL) Services: A Critical Network 

    When you have a Less-Than-Truckload (LTL) shipment, you are shipping eight pallets of goods or less simultaneously. LTL shipments go on trucks that are consolidated with other shippers’ goods. They are taken to carrier terminals, are unloaded, and reloaded based on the final destination. 3PL providers can source with multiple carriers and assign one based on your needs and carrier strengths. They have strong relationships with national, regional, and local LTL carriers. They also offer special services like expedited and drop shipments (order fulfillment). As with Truckload Services, a 3PL provider matches optimal carriers based on the commodity and your geographic locations. They negotiate competitive rates, arrange pickup and delivery, and handle auditing, billing, and payment.

    International Services: An Important Partnership

    Whether shipping from North America or into North America, it requires expertise and a network of freight services. A 3PL provider can provide customs clearance, access to shipping containers (LCL & FCL), container shipping, and drayage once the container reaches the port. Shipping documents must be accurate and complete to ensure the delivery of goods on time and without error. Shipping goods internationally can be particularly challenging as some companies operate in multiple countries with different laws and customs requirements. For example, obtaining several import permits or certifications from foreign authorities may be necessary before shipping certain items overseas. The right provider will be able to partner with you to manage the documentation for the best result. 3PLs work with international service providers offering air, sea, trucking, warehousing, and distribution services. The right partner can help you reduce costs and improve efficiency in managing your supply chain.

    Freight Management: The Best of a 3PL Provider

    One of the most time-consuming parts of freight management is auditing carrier invoices. A 3PL provider can offer pre- or post-invoice auditing, carrier negotiation, resolution of invoice discrepancies, and final invoicing. Auditing involves reviewing shipping documents to ensure they adhere to business standards and regulations. Any charges outside the agreed-upon rate with the carrier are reconciled during auditing. Carrier invoice errors can occur when requirements for a shipment change, such as adding a liftgate while the freight is in transit. It is crucial to reconcile both sides before making a payment.


    Freight claim administration manages claims submitted by carriers, shippers, and other parties involved in a shipment. These claims are filed when there is a problem with the delivery, damage, or misdelivery of goods. 3PLs can provide much value in the area of freight claim administration. They do this by examining the available evidence and resolving disputes between parties. Having an expert in claims management mediation is vital as it helps prevent costly disputes between carriers, shippers, and other parties involved in a freight transaction. The claims management process is lengthy. Freight management is a critical aspect of running any business – whether large or small – and having the support of 3PL providers can ease the stress and uncertainty of invoices and claims.

    Technology: Visibility and Access

    Centralized data is a key aspect of the visibility of your freight movements and enables leveraging data analytics. A transportation management system (TMS) is freight software that allows you to enter and schedule shipments and garner instant rates. It includes tracking as well as shipment history and invoices. As you look for a 3PL partnership, you should address where you are with your technology and where you want to be. The right 3PL provider will have the technology to close that gap for you and your business.

    In Closing

    Navigating the supply chain can be a daunting task. Partnering with 3PL providers benefits you in three distinct ways:

    1.  Better Service: 3PL providers have decades of experience and can handle all your logistics needs so that you don’t have to.
    2.  Cost Savings: Negotiated discounts with carriers are passed on to customers, so you save money from day one!
    3.  Expertise: Managing carrier relationships day in and day out means a 3PL provider knows exactly how each step of the process works so surprises are limited along the way!

    FLI Transportation and Logistics has operated as a 3PL provider for 20 years. We serve mid-market manufacturers and distributors who value cost-effective solutions, customer service, and partnership. FLI Transportation and Logistics provides freight and transportation services at all levels of the supply chain for everything from small shipments to large-scale projects.

    The FLI team includes experts in logistics, transportation, inventory management, warehousing, E-commerce, and more. We work with our customers to find the best solutions for their needs, whether shipping materials overseas or transporting products between warehouses. We are committed to providing excellent customer service and working with clients at all levels of their organizations. Our friendly and approachable team of experienced and passionate individuals will help you navigate the logistics world easily and efficiently.

    Have more questions related to 3PL providers and their services, take the first step today!

  6. What is Power Only Trucking?

    Power Only Trucking – The Solution to Your Labor Issues

    A call comes in around 7:00 pm, “I need a power only truck in Houston tomorrow morning.” The FLI team is off and running to find a driver with a tractor to be at the distribution center by 4:00 am. The driver and tractor are the “power” of the load. The loaded trailer needs to be dropped at a handful of retail stores within the Houston metro area; this is power only trucking. 

    Power only trucking is revolutionizing the supply chain trucking industry. It is the perfect solution for shippers and distributors with assets and trucks dealing with labor issues. With power only trucking, businesses can access the services they need, allowing them to optimize their resources and use their staff and trucks more efficiently. It is a cost-effective, flexible way to handle transportation needs. It is fast becoming the go-to solution for companies struggling with labor issues in the supply chain trucking industry.

    The Problem: Limited Resources

    Shippers and distributors, with assets and owned trailers, are dealing with the same labor issues that most companies have – limited resources when it comes to people. Power only trucking solves this problem by supplying just what you need when you need it. 

    Whether it’s a driver shortage in your fleet or a driver that calls in sick at the last minute, our team is ready to step in as your power only trucking resource. We can address long-term solutions and short-term fixes. Either way, we want to deliver an immediate solution that is cost competitive and operationally sustainable. 

    The Solution: Power Only Trucking

    The FLI team specializes in power only trucking as we have booked an average of 5,700 power only loads annually. 

    We believe in partnerships so trust is an important factor here at FLI. Our carriers are well-vetted and we work with the highest quality carriers in the business. We grow our network of power only trucks by providing superior customer service along with operational excellence.

    We have a robust regional power only truck network servicing the Southeast and Midwest parts of the United States. We have immediate capacity in Minneapolis, Des Moines, Atlanta, and Houston. Our team of Truckload Brokers is driven to create win/win situations for both you and the power. 

    The Benefits

    Power only trucking offers a number of advantages for shippers and distributors with trailer equipment. It provides an efficient way to manage resources by supplying the necessary power when needed. This helps to reduce costs and maintain reliable delivery schedules. Additionally, there is no need to hire or train employees as the trucking company handles all of the required paperwork and logistics. Finally, power only trucking reduces liability since there is no requirement to provide insurance coverage for drivers or vehicles. All in all, power only trucking is an ideal solution for businesses looking to streamline their operations and cut costs.

    How it Works

    For Shippers

    Working with us is simple! Fill out the credit application and email us at to let us know what you need. Our network of both national and regional carriers ensures the freight will arrive on time, every time. And, with competitive rates, our customers are guaranteed great value on every load they book. With power only trucking, shippers and distributors don’t have to worry about dealing with labor issues or expensive overhead costs associated with owning trucks. All they have to do is make one call to us, and we will handle everything else for them.

    For Carriers

    Are you a carrier that can offer power only trucking? Contact us to partner! 

    We’ll review your information and ensure you meet all the requirements, including insurance limits, before getting started. You’ll also be asked to provide proof of experience in power only trucking so we can better serve our customers’ needs. Once we’ve matched a need to your capacity, we will ensure agreements are signed between your company and the owner of the trailer equipment.