The Power of a Dynamic Rating Engine in a TMS

An interactive dashboard displaying a rating engine within a transportation management system, showcasing various supply chain processes like quoting, optimization, multimodal planning, auditing, billing, and analytics for enhanced efficiency and cost reduction.

This article explores the features of a rating engine. Find out how a multimodal rating engine supports cost control and flexibility throughout the transportation network, while helping organizations like yours optimize operations on everything from freight rate quoting to auditing.

Rating is an essential aspect of capacity procurement. It offers a comprehensive overview of transportation costs by mode, shipment, SKU, and individual carrier performance.
Companies can use this information to evaluate the efficiency of their supply chain and identify freight network optimization opportunities. Modern rating systems use advanced algorithms to analyze large amounts of data, enabling scenario planning and comparison of shipping modes and service levels.

What is a Rating Engine?

A rating engine is a comprehensive solution to freight management complexities. By inputting shipment details, users can quickly compare prices and services of multiple carriers.

Rating engines are often housed within transportation management systems (TMS) and connect organizations and processes such as quoting, optimization, multimodal planning and rating, auditing and settlement, billing, and analytics and modeling.

How a Rating Engine Connects Business Processes

A rating engine within a TMS have the ability to connect organizations and processes, including:

1. Quoting – Accurate, transparent pricing is critical to driving sales and revenue. Without the ability to quote well, or at a detailed level, a company risks losing sales deals or creating consternation with customers by failing to provide a clear breakdown of costs.

2. Optimization – Without a powerful rating engine, it can be difficult to visualize all scenarios without hours of manual evaluation, making network and cost optimization nearly impossible. Rating engines provide a high-level view of network inefficiencies and make it easier to drill down areas for improvement.

3. Multimodal Planning & Rating – Supply chain teams rely on a high level of carrier and mode diversity across ocean, truckload, and rail to move freight, but navigating a multimodal carrier network is incredibly complex. Rating engines provide immediate insight on price and transit times to ensure shippers make the most of their multimodal options.

4. Auditing & Settlement – Rating engines and carrier contracts simplify auditing and settlement processes for Accounts Payable departments by ensuring that line item prices are transparent and consistent with expected costs.

5. Billing – Rating engine quotes simplify billing for Accounts Receivable by automating rate updates when pricing estimates fall within given acceptable parameters. As a result, the need is eliminated for multiple audits and manual verification.

6. Analytics & Modeling – External or internal TMS data in a rating engine can be used to evaluate optimization efforts and model future outcomes across the transportation network, helping to inform priorities and guide better decision-making over time.

What to Look For in a TMS Rating Engine

TMS rating engines should give shippers and 3PLs the ability to be efficient, on time, and flexible. When looking for a TMS rating engine, consider one that supports contract management, transit time and location logic, multi-currency support, and advanced customization. MercuryGate’s omni-rating model delivers all of these capabilities.

MercuryGate’s Dynamic Rate Manager streamlines sales processes by building, testing, analyzing, and activating pricing rules in an easy-to-read Excel table format. Dynamic Rate Manager is intended to automate the calculation of customer rating while simultaneously simplifying freight rate management. At the center of this solution is the concept of using costs with markups to generate a customer rate, instead of traditional customer contracts. The end result is a simplified method to support consistent and accurate customer pricing even in multi-client, multi-execution models.

Dynamic Rate Manager works by setting customer pricing by mode, customer, or lane. It allows logistics service providers to manage a single carrier relationship contract associated with multiple customer profiles. When the carrier rate is updated, customer rates are automatically adjusted within the TMS and uplifted accordingly, minimizing manual entry.

The value of Dynamic Rate Manager goes beyond contract management efficiency. This tool helps LSPs effectively protect margins, while simultaneously ensuring that shippers are always paying market-relevant rates, regardless of swings in the freight market.
Dynamic Rate Manager’s customer service value lies in its transparency and ability to adapt quickly.

Calculate your potential Saving While Using an enterprise TMS

Ready to Learn More? See How MercuryGate TMS Users Can Ramp Up Their Rating Game

The omni-rating model and Dynamic Rate Manager are powerful rating engine tools within the MercuryGate TMS that add value across your organization.
From quoting and planning, auditing and modeling, and advanced contract management and customized scripting, these solutions provide the optimization superpowers you need to minimize costs and increase efficiency across transportation networks.

To learn more about the power of dynamic rating in a TMS, download our e-Book today. Click the link below to increase your flexibility with improve freight rating visibility.

Find out about the power of Dynamic Rating in a TMS


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