When it comes to proper business management, a lot of factors need to be taken into consideration.
Cutting down unnecessary costs, improving the work environment, and providing good-quality products are all essential but there’s something that most business owners miss out on that’s equally essential. This is a freight management system.
If your shipping and transportation management is weak, your customers won’t be satisfied. The freight management market is estimated to grow to 17.45 billion USD by 2023. In order to have an efficient freight system, what steps can you take? Read this guide to find out.
1. Include shipping aggregation
Shipping aggregation means to include multiple shipments or products into one single order. This way, you won’t have to make several deliveries to the same address at different times throughout the day. Instead, only a bulk parcel will be delivered to that address.
This tip can save you a lot of money, not to mention fuel costs because your number of deliveries will reduce. Shipping aggregation also makes it easier for you to keep track of all your shipments.
2. Diversify your network
Diversifying your freight network is a great way to secure competitive rates. The more competitors you have, the more negotiations you will have to face. This will also mean better prices for you.
However, in a traditional setup, it might not be very wise to simply increase the vendor or the carrier pool. Rather, you can optimize the management system by automating all your negotiations and communicating with as many vendors as possible.
3. Automate your technology
In today’s era of digitization, it’s always a good idea to adopt automation software. This will make your work much easier and cut down on a lot of time. For example, Cario helps you to eliminate all worries of the warehouse by taking care of your problems.
It has smart tools and shipping software such as BYO freight rates, easy integration of your network, and simple online modes of training. Using Cario, you will be in complete control of your orders and make sure everything reaches its destination fast.
3. Build strong relations
If you want to optimize your freight system, you have to build good relations with your distributors. Both parties need to be honest with and trust each other. After all, your distributors are the ones making sure all your parcels reach their proper destinations within time.
In case there is a shipping problem, they should be the ones to tell you first, not your customers. The more you communicate with your distributors, the better idea you’ll have regarding the shipping processes. In case of any mishap, you both can work together to solve problems.
4. See the rate per shipment
One of the most important tips to properly look after your management system is to review all the possible transportation modes for a specific shipment. After that, you should review the costs and check the rates per shipment.
To make things easier, you can write down a list of pros and cons of each transport method and take into account the costs. After that, you can make an informed decision. Using international freight index tools, you can even set a benchmark for your own rates.
5. Keep your data protected
Shipping companies require them to gather a lot of sensitive information, such as the customers’ addresses, phone numbers, or other details. Therefore, it becomes essential to protect this data.
You will have to share this data with the delivery persons or other people concerned but make sure each of them keeps these things confidential. In your transportation management system, you have to secure all the data so that your customers keep having faith in your team.
6. Focus on long-term commitments
When you have to chalk out a business plan, you need to think of both short-term and long-term goals. While it’s important to pay attention to the short-term ones, it’s more important to take a glimpse into the future and focus on long-term commitments.
Too many things can fade away after a short time but your company is here to stay. So make sure your team sees the benefits of thinking about long-term successes and plans.
Over to you…
Adopting the right measures to optimize your freight management system is important, not just for your company but also to make sure your customers stay happy. Keep these tips in mind and you’ll see a marked improvement.
How to Run a Better Business in 2022
If you’re trying to streamline your business success, you likely need a good set of skills in your business toolkit to continue thriving as you desire. Thankfully, there are many ways to improve your business, and we’ve got the inside scoop on these tips and tricks for 2022! It doesn’t matter if you’re starting from scratch or trying to improve last year’s outcomes, as these suggestions are applicable wherever you are with improving your business. Let’s get started.
Get a Good Team
Take some time to round up the right team members for the job. You’ll want people who have the skills and talents you need to succeed in your line of work. Likewise, you’ll also need to run background checks on all potential candidates so you can ensure you’re hiring those you can trust.
Creating a team you truly feel you can count on takes time. Don’t rush this critical part of the hiring process. In the end, you’ll have a supportive staff ready to work! Plus, when it comes time to consider employee retention strategies, you’re already on track for success.
Set Clear Goals
Getting your business thriving is all about setting clear goals. Set intentions with your staff every quarter so that everyone will stay on the same page regarding what will need to be accomplished on a daily bases. Don’t let anything stand in the way of your productivity. Consider popular goal-setting frameworks like OKR goals and SMART goals to get started managing your business.
There are many different goal templates and formats to consider. See what works for you and your staff. Remember to consider both short-term and long-term goals and create goals that fill the big picture and the details. All these steps will give you the foundation you need to get you where you want to go with running a better business this year.
Encourage Team Activities
Building a strong workplace culture is critical to the well-being of your staff as well as the functioning of your business. You want to ensure that your workplace is positive and that everyone feels comfortable and included. Hold friendly competitions like employee of the month, raffles, and group goals.
Assign different groups to work on tasks with rewards such as free lunch or taking everyone out for karaoke. You might also encourage bonding activities or icebreakers by playing charades or Scattergories during the end of work meetings or at work parties. Any way you can include some time to get to know one another as team members will be beneficial for your company’s flow and culture.
Continue Your Learning
You can go the extra mile by continuing your learning as a business leader through online education courses, workshops, seminars, and more. Always be on the lookout for changing work styles and technology updates you should be aware of.
Embrace these positive changes to continue running your business optimally. You might even consider returning to school to get additional accreditations and apply these new insights to your business. Getting ahead of new strategies will help ensure that your business stays relevant and can thrive for longer. As new business strategies and technologies develop, you can stay ahead of the competition by learning about these innovations earlier on.
The Bottom Line
Running your business better in 2022 is about picking up the pace and remembering that great things are built by teams. Consider these suggestions, and don’t settle for less than you desire for your business. All your goals are possible with the right attitude, patience, and skill sets. Make this year your year for business.
What Soft Skills Do Budding Entrepreneurs Need to Make It?
Being gifted at the technical or specialist aspects of your job will only take you so far these days. As reported in Monster’s The Future of Work 2021: Global Hiring Outlook, the qualities employers are most seeking are the so-called ‘soft skills’. These include the ability to collaborate, think critically, persevere, manage their time, and communicate. Dependability—being someone the company can count on—also ranks highly on the list. If you are a budding entrepreneur, how can you display these skills and be the leader your team needs to achieve ambitious goals?
Building Communication Skills
If you want to shine in the business sphere, you will need to actively assess and (if necessary) improve your communication skills. Good communication not only involves using the right verbal and body language, but also practicing active listening techniques. These skills can be honed by undertaking a communication and body language course, many of which are offered online. These courses teach students the correct posture and gestures to adopt when you are discussing a matter with others. For instance, your hands should be in an open position, your arms should remain at your sides, and your body should be turned towards the person. Saying phrases like “I see,” or “Yes, I understand,” indicates empathy and a genuine interest in the person speaking. Good communication also extends to receiving and giving feedback. Professionally-led feedback courses will help you receive objective feedback from staff, so you know which areas you need to work on.
Harnessing the Talents of Your Team
As stated by Tommy Mello A1 Garage owner, top leaders expect – they don’t inspect. Although your business may be new, if you have hired staff, don’t fall into the mistake of micromanaging them. Hire good talent and let them shine; don’t ask them if they’ve answered every email or taken care of every order if you know they are diligent and customer-focused. To support your team, ensure they have detailed instructions (written and if possible on video) on how to carry out their role. Make yourself available via phone or in person when they need a query answered and send them friendly Looms (video messages) to explain any areas of confusion (instead of always contacting them in written form). Schedule regular meetings, so you can discuss the progress of projects, as well as any obstacles or setbacks. Have progress checks in place, relying on project management software, so you can easily check the respective stages of different projects.
Projects may run into stumbling blocks that necessitate a good ‘Plan B’. As a leader, you should be able to adapt to new or changing demands, so you can find another way of reaching or even slightly shifting your goal. Being flexible involves much more than being a strategic thinker, however. It also involves offering your employees the chance to embrace a flextime working schedule or one that enables them to have a good work-life balance. So long as the progress of projects is steady, there is no need to make rigid demands on employees. Research has shown that millennials and younger generations prioritize flexibility when it comes to finding a company to hitch their wagon onto.
If you want to be a great leader, start working on your soft skills from the word go. Although there is a myriad of skills to hone, three of the most important are communication, delegation, and flexibility. You should also set a good example through your diligence and passion for providing quality work to your clients.
How to Ensure Your Office is Drug-Free?
A workplace with substance abuse issues is more than just an unsafe environment. It is also unhealthy and inefficient. Every year, drug and alcohol use in the workplace costs businesses billions of dollars in accidents, injuries, illness, and increased absences.
Furthermore, drug and alcohol use in the workplace can reduce productivity and employee morale. 22.5% of workers admit to using illicit drugs or alcohol during work hours. One in ten employees says a coworker’s use of alcohol has impacted them.
Creating a drug-free workplace can mitigate and prevent illicit substance abuse on the job, which has numerous advantages for both your employees and your organization. If you’re not sure where to begin, the following tips may point you in the right direction.
1. Draft a Written Policy
Your first step forward towards a drug-free workplace is to create a policy outlining unacceptable behaviors and the disciplinary proceedings that will be taken against employees who violate the rules.
Employees at all levels should be ready for the drug-free workplace policy’s execution. Everyone in the organization requires information about the issues surrounding substance abuse.
Workplace guidelines should highlight drug and alcohol laws and regulations, but they must also include the repercussions for violating these laws and other office drug and alcohol policies. Consider including information about local substance abuse resources in the employee manual.
2. Educate Employees
A policy can only take you so far. Some workers will blindly follow company policy, but it is always better to educate your employees on why such rules exist. This will empower your employees to make the correct decision and follow the company’s drug-abuse regulations.
Everyone in the company needs to be informed about the issues involving substance abuse. Training should not only warn workers about the perils of using drugs and alcohol at work.
They should also promote healthy lifestyles and coping strategies that do not involve using or abusing substances. This ensures that they understand the big picture and feel inspired to make wise decisions.
3. Employee Assistance programs
Employee assistance programmes (EAPs) are intended to assist employees with personal issues that may interfere with their job performance.
Although some EAPs focus on alcohol and other drug problems, the majority of them address many different problems and can provide a range of services. It provides employees with psychoeducation, counseling, and other wellness resources.
Enrolling in an employee assistance programme allows employees to prevent and address substance abuse issues.
According to research, preventing substance use in the workplace is more cost-effective, and demonstrating to employees that an organization prioritizes their physical and mental health increases overall workplace wellness.
4. Regular Drug Testing
One method of protecting your workplace from the adverse effects of substance abuse is drug testing. This can deter employees from taking risks while also identifying which employees require assistance.
Drug testing may assist your organization in meeting federal regulations or insurance carrier requirements. Check out Oz drug testing for supplies of drug testing kits which deliver fast results.
It has the potential to improve workplace safety while also lowering costs associated with the misuse of alcohol and other drugs on the job. A drug-testing programme can also deter employees from arriving at work when they are unfit to perform their duties.
Inform your employees about this policy, and when it comes to drug testing, treat everyone fairly and equally.
5. Build a Culture of Support
Successful organizations make it a point to foster supportive cultures. If you suspect a worker has a drug or alcohol problem, accusing them will only make them defensive. Instead, ask them about their work performance and how they interact with coworkers.
If you know any employees who have struggled with substance abuse in the past, try to rally them to form a supportive community within your organization. Employees are much less likely to feel isolated and desperate when they can connect during difficult times.
Also, don’t be afraid to solicit feedback from your workforce. Above all, treat all employees fairly and equally and adhere to your established policies.
Over to you…
It may take some effort, but a drug-free workplace is well worth the time and effort. Your company will benefit from better overall morale and productivity, fewer unexpected expenses, and reduced employee turnover. Employees will feel happier and healthier, which will help everyone in the long run.
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