Supply Chain Expertise and Technology Blog by TMC, a division of C.H. Robinson

Archives for February 2011

Have you Discovered Rate Curves Yet?

managing a route guide with a TMS

What is a rate curve? If you do not know the answer to this question or only have a vague notion of what the term means, then you are missing out on a relatively simple, but powerful freight management tool. Don’t feel bad if you are nonplussed; in our experience many practitioners are unfamiliar with the concept.

When used in conjunction with the analytics of a good transportation management system, rate curves consistently drive cost savings and network efficiencies by improving the performance of route guides. This graphic representation of shipments provides a snapshot of how cost effective your freight operations are in a specific lane. By delving a little deeper into the data, you can develop strategies for lowering freight costs without compromising customer service.  Read More…

Savings By The Bundle

Transportation costs and savings

If you have ever wondered whether aggregating low volume lanes is a way to lower full truckload costs then conjecture no longer; research shows that such a strategy can achieve savings of up to 15 percent over spot market rates.

The research project was sponsored by C. H. Robinson Worldwide, Inc. and carried out by Julia M. Collins and R. Ryan Quinlan, graduate students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the Master of Engineering in Logistics program. Using two years of event data for roughly 500,000 valid, historic truckload transactions supplied by TMC, a division of C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Inc, the researchers analyzed the impact of lane aggregation on rates. Read More…

Are You Managing the Right Negotiations?

Freight Rate Negotiation

When bargaining over freight rates, many shippers and carriers are involved in the wrong negotiations without being aware of their mistake. It has nothing to do with where they are physically located or the identity of the trading partners across the table. The oversight has everything to do with not discussing the rates that really matter.

For shippers, it is easy to become fixated on hammering out a lower rate and to neglect the deeper reasons for carrier pricing strategies. As a result, the annual transportation procurement exercise strays off track before it has even begun.  Read More…

- Director of Consulting Services, C.H. Robinson
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In Crisis, People Make the Difference

Supply chain disaster recovery

I probably answer a question about disaster recovery or emergency capabilities at least once a week. This week, we responded to a real emergency where our processes were put to the test by a historic – some would say epic – weather crisis.

The snowstorm that battered Chicago and much of the country looks to be the 3rd biggest on record for the city. According to many experts storms of this magnitude occur every twenty to thirty years. As of noon Wednesday, February 2, 2011, 20.2 inches of snow was recorded at O’Hare International Airport, putting the blizzard of 2011 ahead of the infamous storm of January 1979 that left 18.8 inches. This deluge of snow fell in less than 24 hours.  Read More…

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