Take a moment to think about usability within a Transportation Management System (TMS). Usability might not seem like a big issue, but what happens if TMS usability within a new platform your company has invested in makes it harder for employees to schedule freight? What happens if the TMS is cumbersome and takes five extra minutes to schedule a single shipment? Now amplify that example across 10,000 shipments. If the level of usability amounts to 50,000 extra minutes, that’s almost 1,000 hours that lower return on investment (ROI). But, imagine the example in reverse—that’s a savings of almost 1,000 hours. Usability is crucial when it comes to your employees’ adoption of a TMS, and the sharing of data across departments in your organization. Without usability and automation, your organization may be left with the same outdated and inefficient processes. To improve ROI, shippers need to understand the real costs of poor TMS usability, the benefits of usability and TMS adoption for an enterprise, and a few tips for maximizing TMS usability.
The High Costs of Limited TMS Usability
Limited TMS usability is a simple issue. Without usability, employees cannot fulfill their duties as efficiently as possible. It’s often been said that time is money, and any time-related problem could be the key factor in a missed or late delivery. In many cases, usability is overlooked in the design of a TMS in an effort to pack in features that may not even be needed or wanted by users. As reported by Talking Logistics with Adrian Gonzalez:
As it stands today, most TMS implementations have a typical ROI of approximately 7%. While that return on investment is a positive for any business, it’s often not enough to stay competitive in today’s highly complex supply chains. A recent Grand View Research report found that the global TMS market will swell at a CAGR of 16.2% between 2019 and 2025, and part of the strong growth will stem from improved TMS usability. As the state of the TMS market changes, supply chain leaders must evolve to ensure their organizations can leverage and reap the greatest value from any new investment in a supply chain system, including TMS.
Benefits of TMS Usability for Your Organization
- Increased adoption rates among supply chain partners.
- Reduced data entry errors.
- Decreased labor costs.
- Improved supply chain collaboration.
- Increased visibility into operations and shipments.
- Better reporting capabilities.
- Increased automation.
- Increased compliance with new and evolving regulations.
How to Ensure Proper, Above-Expectations Usability of Your Transportation Management Platform
Managing Supply Chain Disruptions within Peak Shipping Seasons
- Use dashboards to streamline reporting throughout your organization, showing how the TMS connects employees to management and vice versa.
- Take advantage of available portals to automate and outsource carrier, supplier, and customer management, reducing the busywork of staff.
- Leverage intuitive learning modules with the TMS, which will reduce the number of clicks and hassle in managing and booking freight.
- Eliminate complex coding integrations with APIs, enabling a faster launch and fewer hiccups along the way.
- Work with an expert that will hear the concerns of your staff and mitigate change management issues during the training process.