What Is a Transportation Management System (TMS)?
A transportation management system (TMS) is software that helps companies plan, execute, and optimize the movement of goods and merchandise. TMS can help with everything from route planning and carrier selection to tracking and reporting on shipments. It can also help with compliance, customs clearance, and other logistics-related tasks. Some TMS solutions are designed for specific industries, such as retail or manufacturing, while others are more general-purpose. The main goal of a TMS is to help companies improve the efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and visibility of their transportation operations.
What Are the Benefits of a Transportation Management System?
There are several benefits to using a transportation management system (TMS), including:
- Improved efficiency: TMS can help companies plan and execute shipments more efficiently, reducing transit times and costs.
- Better visibility: TMS can provide real-time tracking and reporting on shipments, giving companies greater visibility into their transportation operations.
- Increased flexibility: TMS can help companies quickly adapt to changes in demand or supply chain disruptions.
- Reduced costs: TMS can help companies reduce transportation costs by optimizing routes, consolidating shipments, and selecting the most cost-effective carriers.
- Compliance: TMS can help companies comply with regulations and customs clearance requirements.
- Better customer service: TMS can help companies improve their ability to respond to customer needs and provide accurate delivery information
- Better decision-making: TMS can provide valuable data and insights that can help companies make more informed decisions about their transportation operations.
- Optimization: TMS can help companies optimize their transportation operations by identifying the best routes, carriers, modes of transportation, and shipping schedules.
- Automation: TMS can automate many of the manual tasks associated with transportation management such as booking, tracking, documentation, and invoicing.
- Scalability: TMS can accommodate growth and changes in business, allowing companies to scale their transportation operations as needed.
What Is the Future of Transportation Management Systems?
Throughout the world and across essentially every industry, organizations are embracing digital automation and analytics solutions to manage global supply chains. Transportation management software brings shipping and logistics into the future, allowing you to do and accomplish more, at lower cost, and with fewer resources. This shift is only the beginning. Investing in a transportation management system means future proofing your business.
What Is a TMS Implementation?
A TMS (Transportation Management System) implementation is the process of introducing and integrating a TMS software into a company’s existing operations and systems. This process typically involves several steps, including:
- Assessment: The first step in a TMS implementation is to assess the current state of the company’s transportation operations, including the existing systems, processes, and workflows. This step helps to identify the specific needs and challenges that the TMS will need to address.
- Planning: The next step is to plan the implementation, including identifying the specific TMS solution that will be used, the resources that will be required, and the timeline for the implementation.
- Configuration: Once the TMS solution has been selected, it will need to be configured to meet the specific needs of the company. This step involves setting up the system and customizing it to work with the company’s existing systems and processes.
- Testing: Before the TMS is rolled out, it will need to be tested to ensure that it is working properly and that it meets the company’s needs.
- Training: As part of the implementation process, employees will need to be trained on how to use the TMS. This step is important to ensure that the system is used effectively and that all employees are familiar with its features and functionality.
- Roll-out: Once the TMS has been configured, tested, and employees have been trained, it can be rolled out to the entire organization.
- Support and Maintenance: After the TMS has been implemented, it will need to be maintained and supported. This includes monitoring the system for issues, providing updates and upgrades, and providing support to users as needed.
The duration and complexity of the implementation process will depend on the specific TMS solution, the company’s existing systems and processes, and the scope of the implementation. A TMS implementation can take several weeks to several months to be fully implemented.
Overall, a TMS implementation is a process that requires careful planning, execution, and ongoing support to ensure that the system is used effectively and that it meets the company’s needs.
What Happens After The TMS Implementation?
Our TMS implementation experts will ensure you have the expertise to manage the application, but we will still be there every step of the way to make sure your company will:
- Maximize the return on investment by using the technology more efficiently
- Gain efficiencies by improving the super user application knowledge
- Reduce network-wide costs by implementing advanced transportation strategies
- Streamline internal processes through better user workflows and technology configurations
- Increase visibility by reducing “out of the system” work that is being done
Our team develops an understanding of your people, roles and capabilities to tailor your processes, training and documentation to your specific needs. Our enABLE methodology establishes multiple user testing cycles to ensure the quality of the deployment and adequate training. Our supply chain management and transportation consultants have a deep understanding of the technologies. Our team supports the discovery and design phase with configuration and process recommendations. Whether you are seeking a traditional TMS or cloud TMS, our team has the resources to help you optimize your transportation networks. From fleet optimization to delivery management to proof of delivery, we have the tools you need to streamline your transportation processes.
How Can enVista Help?
enVista ensures your TMS implementation runs smoothly.
Manufacturers, retailers, distributors, and third-party logistics (3PL) providers are constantly challenged with meeting “perfect” delivery expectations at the lowest cost possible. In this environment, companies need help understanding, selecting, and implementing transportation and delivery management software. Today’s transportation leaders need tight alignment between their business requirements, operational processes, transportation systems, and integration capabilities. They need a transportation management system that provides a view of an entire supply chain network.
With enVista as your implementation partner, we will aid you in your TMS provider selection and implementation to help you:
- Develop and define business rules and configuration requirements.
- Document technical specifications, integration points and standard operating procedures of key business processes and exceptions.
- Configure applications to enable future state processes.
- Automate repetitive or low-value tasks with a single platform, enabling employees to focus on higher value-generating activities.
- Improve visibility and standardize reporting metrics and training resources on new or enhanced applications and processes.
Our steps to ensure you have a successful TMS implementation include:
- Project planning
- Conference room pilot (CRP)
- Application configuration
- Detailed integration definition
- Carrier EDI setup
- End-user and user acceptance testing
- Vendor and carrier onboarding
- Training for all stakeholders
- Development of documented standard operating procedures
- Go-live support
- Post-implementation support