6 Tips to Build Your Transportation Management System Vendor List & How to Build a Comparison Chart

6 Tips to Build Your Transportation Management System Vendor List & How to Build a Comparison Chart
Building a successful transportation management system vendor list presents a seemingly tricky challenge. The many different benefits and drawbacks of the multiple TMS solutions available can complicate the RFP process. However, through implementing a working comparison chart, businesses in the over-the-road trucking industry can establish a successful TMS vendor list. As explained by George Kontoravdis, PhD., that includes considering the delivery model: “Enterprise-wide TMS are identified as the most needed add-on module to established ERP and WMS deployments. While enterprise TMS solutions are an option, realizing quick ROI greatly depends on the delivery model.” With that in mind, it’s essential to have a few tips that will ensure that your company takes all the necessary steps for assembling that list.

1. Identify Your Strengths and Weaknesses in the Existing Tech Stack

The first step in building a successful transportation management system vendor list is identifying your existing tech stack’s strengths and weaknesses. This first step assists in assessing the immediate needs of existing technology that the company utilizes. Different transportation management systems will either improve business operations or, should these strengths and weaknesses remain unidentified, vastly undermine the existing technology stack. And failure to see those issues can present trouble when trying to get stakeholder support for a new implementation.

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2. Create a Set of Standards for Measuring Vendor Strengths and Weaknesses

Companies should also make sure to set standards for measuring the vendors’ strengths and weaknesses as well. Businesses that come prepared for their vendor list assembly with this knowledge can better narrow down their selections. This means that wiser decisions can take place based on both vendor appeal and the company’s own transportation management system desires.

3. Focus on Your Long-Term Strategy for Managing Logistics

Establishing a long-term strategy for logistic management should take priority for transportation management system selection. Companies with plans for their long-term goals and objectives will make wiser decisions based on their needs. For instance, think about both the inbound flows for freight claims processes and how those align with outbound freight management.

4. Consider the Role of Customer Support in Both Selection and Eventual Onboarding

The role of customer support should also come into consideration. Customer support can offer valuable insight into which transportation management system will benefit the company. Customer support should take part in both selection and the eventual onboarding of a TMS.

5. Create a Living, Cloud-Based Document That’s Shared Throughout the Change Management Team

The creation of a cloud-based document ensures a platform for live feedback within the change management team. A cloud-based document allows the change management team to keep a real-time record of the decision-making process. These documents also make for excellent reference points and valuable data collection that might lead them toward particular transportation management systems.

6. Keep It Intuitive and Easy to Use, Such as Adding Visual Cues or Checklist-Style Points of Consideration

Finally, one of the best ways to create a successful transportation management system vendor list comes from an intuitive interface. An easy-to-use interface should incorporate visual aids and checklist-style points so that the list can be interpreted easily. The information that eventually assembles the list should not require a dense understanding of the multiple consideration levels.

Enhance the Supply Chain Efficacy With a Proactive Vendor Selection Checklist and Comparison

These tips assist in simplifying the process of transportation management system vendor list assembly. The benefits of assessing strengths and weaknesses, utilizing cloud-based documents, and using intuitive interfaces for assembly make the process much easier. Additionally, the implementation of these strategies ensures that the checklist remains proactive. Above all else, remember that your TMS checklist can be as vast and detailed as you prefer. A proactive checklist and comparison of different vendors can help your business make the best decision for your company.

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