Transportation Management System: Software Solutions for the Logistics Industry
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When you are engaged in logistic processes in your business you need to provide agile solutions. That is crucial as often it is logistics that is a weak side of any business. And today, that industry requires automated and technological solutions to stay afloat and maintain the rhythm.
What would you tell about making all the processes in logistics transparent, automated, and easily tracked? That is what, in general, the transportation management system offers today.
It is forecasted that in 2027, the share of the global TMS market may reach $11,367 million with a CAGR of up to 9.6%.
Let’s talk about what transportation management solutions are presented in the market today, and what ideas on transportation management software developers offer businesses.
Relevant video about Transportation Management System 🎥
What Is a Transportation Management System (TMS)
What is a transportation management system as a concept? This term refers to software solutions intended to manage transportation platforms, services, and processes, and it is considered to be a part of a supply chain solution. In the frame of opportunities that transportation management solutions offer today, TRM can provide a seamless workflow in terms of planning, management, execution, and analyzing transportation processes.
From the point of view of a potential audience that may be interested in transportation management software, there are lots of businesses where it can come in handy.
- Shippers, freight brokers, hauliers, and other providers of transportation services.
- Manufacturers and retailers whose products should be transported to the consumer.
- E-commerce owners.
- Retail businesses.
Almost every industry where something should be carried somewhere can get profit from transportation management systems.
As for the types of transportation management software that are today represented in the global market, there are two basic types to choose from.
- Cloud-based SaaS solutions.
- On-premise software.
When deciding on the number of functions available in transportation management software, it fully depends on the needs of a customer. The minimal range of functions includes planning and execution. But you can also get other useful functions integrated into the transportation management solution you choose.
TOP-5 Transportation Management Systems in 2023
To clearly see all the benefits of TMS for businesses, it is worth considering the best examples of such transportation management solutions. In particular, today the United States is the leader in the development and use of transportation management systems. And among the best solutions for carriers and logistics departments, the following 5 products stand out.
That is #1 on our list due to its international popularity. The software offers the widest range of functions to provide complex shipping processes easily. Its functionality includes order management, carrier comparing rates, planning, execution, and analyzing all the processes in logistics.
That SaaS provider offers a cloud-based transportation management system primarily designed for truck carriers and hauliers. But its benefits are quite evident as the developer offers quite a low rate for its product combined with top-notch functions implemented in it. Besides, in future, options for air and sea shipping will be available.
That TMS works internationally and it offers full-fledged functionality that includes all operational processes for logistics from planning and evaluation to settling shipments. It is simple, reliable, and suits both big transport companies’ and domestic logistics needs.
Transportation management software has the main benefit in its base. It is developed on the base of Salesforce and thus, it offers its predecessor's huge database. Besides, for freight forward brokers it is a win-win solution due to the presentation of the biggest amount of small LSPs who can use the platform on the freemium base.
This TMS doesn’t need any presentation as it is one of the most robust and custom-tailored software developed by a world-known IT company. It strictly adheres to international supply chain requirements and offers a wide range of opportunities.
What Is Transportation Management Software and What Features It Should Have
Now let’s talk about how to use TMS and what features of that kind of software are crucial for successful logistics performance.
First, let’s consider which types of TMS are now available in the market. Here is a simple classification of the main types of transportation management systems.
- By its components, TMS can be either solution or a service.
- By solution type there are TMSs that provide: execution&planning, order management, payment and audit, analytics, tracking and planning routes.
- By deployment type they can be either cloud-based or on-premise.
- By transport type: for ruck transportation, railway, air, or maritime.
Here we have highlighted the top-5 functions and features that make transportation management solutions effective and bring profit to business owners.
Communication with customers and maintenance of customer relations is one of the cornerstones of the logistics industry. If you use a transportation management system that is either a module of your CRM or contains a CRM module in its structure, you solve several problems in a row. This feature helps with planning, scheduling, and updating customers’ databases and also it offers huge massifs of data to analyze.
Transport Dispatch Software
The essence of that feature of transportation management solution is to centralize all the processes connected with dispatching. It helps to improve the efficiency of every dispatching operation and provides instant control of it. When your business needs multiple dispatching operations at one time, using the transport dispatching software feature in your TMS is a must.
Fleet Management & Tracking Software
Keeping a finger on the pulse is the main idea of TMS. It concerns not only logistics operations but fleet management as well. When your transportation management system has the function of fleet management, you know exactly where each fleet item is now, and what is its condition. That also helps track routes, decide on the mistakes made in transit, and check human factors while shipping.
Supply Chain Management Software
As we have said, it is supply chain maintenance that is the main task each LSP or logistics department performs. There is a special software type that provides the efficiency of supply chain management, namely SCM. You can get it as a module of your TMS to achieve the following goals:
- improve vendor management,
- customer satisfaction increasing,
- quality management improvement,
- distribution processes boost.
Warehouse Management Software
Logistics includes warehouse management too. Thus, special solutions in the field of software products are widely used for warehouse management. The features that are characteristic of this software are also included in the transportation management system. They help to keep warehouse operations in order, provide product audits in the warehouse and simplify the process of transporting goods from warehouses to customers.
Top-5 Transportation Management Solutions for Businesses in 2023
- Fast access to the system from any point of the world.
- Improved and fast scaling of the system.
- Reduced costs for maintenance and ownership.
- No need to pay for TMS upgrades.
- Higher ROI.
AI and ML Technologies
Smart Contracts (Blockchain in Logistics)
Internet of Things
Big Data Analytics in Logistics
Today, the need for transportation management solutions has increased. It is forecasted that this trend will keep on going in recent years. Due to the diversity of functions integrated into transportation management systems, that type of software/solution helps to provide all types of logistics operations seamlessly and instantly. Thus, it is in-demand in businesses of all types and scales from direct LSPs and shippers to manufacturers and retailers. There are several features that create the core of TMS, and when each of these features is developed thoroughly, the whole system works clockwise.
Is TMS similar to ERP?
They are not equal yet some functions can duplicate these two solutions.
Who can use transportation management systems?
That solution is useful for lots of businesses and their departments. In fact, TMS can be used by companies that provide logistic services (both 3PL and LSPs), manufacturers who need logistic processes to be implemented in their business, e-commerce representatives, and retailers. That software solution can come in handy in almost any business connected with selling and distributing goods.
Can TMS be integrated with my CRM or ERP?
Depending on the type of transportation management system you select, it can either be integrated with your software products (like ERP, CRM, SCM, or even GTM application) or be a module within them.
How can I decide on what transportation management system I need for my business?
The best option, in this case, is to get in touch with specialists in the field of TMS software development. For example, you can get a consultation in RexSoft to decide on the most effective solution and get services for its custom development.
Bogdan MisiurenkoBusiness Development Manager