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Data Analytics You’ll Need For Unsurpassed Carrier Delivery Results

In today’s competitive marketplace, delivering an exceptional experience to your customers is an essential requirement for any shipper, whether servicing consumers or businesses. Harness the power of data analytics to assess and ensure that your transportation carriers not only meet but surpass your service performance standards.

Let’s dive into the world of using data analytics to improve shipping operations. Specifically, I’ll focus on these 5 areas: on-time delivery KPIs, shipment optimization, cost reduction strategies, carrier scorecards, and fine-tuning fleet routing. Indeed, harnessing the power of data analytics will enable both shippers and carriers to provide the ultimate delivery experience for their customers while keeping costs in check. See below, where I will provide you a comprehensive overview of the data analytics that you need to assure unsurpassed carrier delivery results.

1. Use On-Time Delivery Key Performance Indicators (KPI) For Data Analytics.

In this age of ecommerce, the on-time delivery rate is crucial for excellent customer satisfaction. By analyzing historical delivery data, businesses can identify trends and patterns that contribute to successful deliveries. Specifically, the best key performance indicators (KPI) for measuring and optimizing on-time delivery are as follows:

  1. On-Time Delivery KPI – The Best Measure of Delivery Performance
  2. Order (Click)-To-Delivery KPI – Measuring Both Ecommerce Fulfillment and On-Time Delivery.
  3. Delivery Promise Accuracy KPI – The Promise Date Is the Key Driver for On-Time Performance.
  4. Order Fill Rate KPI – 100% Order Fill Rate and 100% On-Time Delivery Makes for a Happy Customer.
  5. WISMO (Where Is My Stuff?) Calls / Returns KPIs – Analytics to Determine the Whys Behind Poor Shipment Status and Post-Delivery Mishaps.

For more details, see my article, The Best On-Time Delivery KPIs To Make Your Customers Delighted, for the best ways you can measure and analyze on-time delivery.

The Best On-Time Delivery KPIs To Make Your Customers Delighted.

So what are the best KPIs that focus on on-time delivery? What are the KPIs that can help your ecommerce operations focus on reducing bottlenecks, inefficiencies, and shipping exceptions when it comes to on-time delivery? Click here to explore the different types of on-time delivery KPIs that you can use to improve your customers’ delivery experience.

2. Optimize Your Shipment’s Physical Characteristics To Reduce Costs, Improve Service.

More and more delivery carriers charge shippers by the volume of the shipment, and not so much the weight. So shipping costs and efficiency can be greatly improved by using data analytics to optimize the physical characteristics of your shipments. Specifically, this process involves analyzing factors such as shipment dimensions, weight, density, and destination to determine the most cost-effective packaging and transportation options. To detail, see my article, Large Package Shipping Mistakes And How To Ship More Cheaply, for an explanation on how parcel carriers charge by volume and what shippers can do to save money and improve service.

Large Package Shipping Mistakes And How To Ship More Cheaply.

If you ship large packages, they can be expensive. In some cases, shippers can get surprised on a carrier’s invoice when they are charged over $1,000 for a single unauthorized package. Click here to explore large package shipping, dimensional pricing, mistakes to avoid and how to take steps to reduce costs. 

3. Apply Data Analytics to Reduce Carrier Spend.

Implementing data analytics for your carrier spend provides businesses with insights that enable them to identify inefficiencies, negotiate better contracts, and implement cost-saving measures across their entire supply chain. These insights may include identifying areas where discounts or volume-based pricing can be negotiated, discovering patterns in carrier performance that justify switching providers or consolidating shipments, and understanding the impact of fluctuations in fuel prices or tariffs on overall spend. Indeed, leveraging this information helps businesses make informed decisions that reduce costs without sacrificing service. 

To detail, see my article, Package Delivery – See How To Stop Surging Costs And Make Your Customers Happy, for a full explanation on how to reduce shipping costs and still maintain high service levels.

Package Delivery – See How To Stop Surging Costs And Make Your Customers Happy.

Rising shipping costs hurting your bottom line? There’s a better way! Click here for a package delivery primer for small and large shippers alike. Get the best value for your customers’ shipping needs. First, learn how product, packaging, and customer expectations impact your shipping costs. Then, take action to get the lowest cost for your shipping.

4. Utilize A Carrier Scorecard To Measure And Optimize Their Performance.

Many shippers use a carrier scorecard to evaluate transportation carriers. These carrier scorecards do focus on on-time performance and spend analysis. However, carrier scorecards also focus on many other data analytics and KPIs. For instance, Isometric Technologies provides the following carrier scorecard description:

“… offer shippers a way to objectively analyze carriers through KPIs so they can track performance related to On-Time Delivery (OTD), On-Time Invoicing (OTI) and Payment, responsiveness, data governance, among other metrics.”

delivery data analytics

So, by collecting key performance indicators (KPIs) such as on-time delivery rates, billing accuracy, damage rates, and response times, businesses can develop a comprehensive understanding of each carrier’s strengths and weaknesses. Through ongoing monitoring and benchmarking against industry standards, companies can continue to refine their relationships with existing carriers or explore alternative options when necessary. To detail, below is a list describing other areas that shippers can measure and analyze in regard to carrier service performance.

Carrier Scorecard for Measuring and Optimizing Delivery Results

a. Pickup and Delivery Metrics.

Besides on-time delivery, this includes on-time pickup, on time in full (OTIF), and exception-/claims-free delivery. Especially for the Less-Than-Truckload (LTL) and Truckload (TL) shipping these are key performance indicators.

b. Load Tender Acceptance / Cancellations Rates.

Again, this is key for measuring LTL and TL performance. Some carriers can make big promises on being able to handle a shipper’s volume, then they do not accept loads, cancel, or do not have the right equipment (e.g. a reefer with liftgate).

c. Shipment Status / POD: How Well Does The Carrier Share Information?

Indeed, transparency is crucial for carriers when dealing with both shippers and end-customers. This is because it is increasingly the norm to have clear visibility of delivery status. So, it is essential for shippers to evaluate carriers based on the accuracy and thoroughness of their electronic shipment status updates. Additionally, shippers should ensure carriers deliver timely proof-of-delivery (POD) documents and, if necessary, provide access to real-time GPS tracking of shipments.

d. Invoice Accuracy And Timeliness Metrics.

Especially with non-parcel carriers, invoice accuracy needs to be analyzed and measured. This is not only key to minimize overcharges, but also because billing errors cost the shipper and carrier labor to reconcile through a post-audit. Additionally, delayed billing, such as in the case with international duties, can cause cash flow issues.

e. Damaged Shipment Metrics.

Shippers need to track and analyze the root cause of damaged shipments. This is because recurring costs like these are high for the shipper as well as to their reputation.

For more information of Carrier Scorecards, see Descartes’ Analytics for Improving Carrier Performance and Leveraging Trade Data, Isometric Technologies’ Carrier Scorecarding, and FarEye’s What is a Carrier Scorecard? 12 Critical KPI’s for Carrier Scorecards.

5. Improve Delivery Routing Using Data Analytics.

Some shippers either have their own fleet or have a say in routing dedicated delivery drivers that deliver their product. In these cases, efficient delivery routing is essential for ensuring timely deliveries and reducing fuel costs. In this case, data analytics can play a vital role in optimizing routing by taking into consideration factors such as real-time traffic conditions, weather patterns, road restrictions, and vehicle capacity. Also, advanced routing algorithms can provide the most optimal route options for drivers. As a result, this ensures efficiency in delivery completion as well as meeting customer expectations. For more information of route optimization, see GSMTasks’ Route Optimization Algorithm and Big Data and DropOff’s 5 Best Tips To Optimize Your Delivery Routes.

See Supply Chain Tech Insights for more articles on transportation and data.

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