Challenges and Solutions to Freight Container Turnaround

Posted by Port City Logistics on Jun 8, 2022 1:17:20 PM

Many things impact the day-to-day operations of your local trucking company, but the most impactful often are the most mundane seeming of them all. Load management and capacity procurement inefficiencies remain the highest issues many transportation companies face. Therefore, knowing today's top trends impacting the trucking industry and in-demand shipping services is critical for ongoing growth and recovery.

According to 2019-202 data from Statista, the trucking industry is responsible for most of the overland freight movement in the United States, with the market worth 732.3 billion USD in 2020. Trucking companies employed over 902,000 truck drivers in the US, less than the industry requires. Driver costs are the most significant challenge faced by the industry. American truckers are the lifeblood of local and national economies today. 

The best trucking companies and the best shipping management teams know how to maximize productivity and make the most of every opportunity. This is why a local trucking company must embrace dual transactions and make them a more routine part of shipping operations regardless of their size. Improving services and maximizing the efficiency and profitability of shipping in 2022 relies on new and innovative practices, including dual transactions. 

What Are Dual Transactions?

Modern trucking company services are often quite diverse and include specialized options that can fit customers’ needs or specific loads and shipments. Maintaining a clear view of the end-to-end shipping process and visible supply chain fulfillment keeps operations streamlined. Dual transactions help with this too. For example, a drayage provider drops off a container with a dual transaction and picks up another one at the terminal. 

Dual transactions help improve drayage processes by reducing the time between loads and support containers moving through ports, distribution centers, and shipping hubs more efficiently. As a result, the efficiency and productivity of dual transactions are essential for shipping companies and drivers today. 

As highlighted in a 2020 article by Transport Dive, the Federal Maritime Commission recommends that truckers strive to make dual moves and reduce the number of chassis required, the empty transport miles, idle wait time, and overall unproductivity of many current pickup and dropoff practices.

The Benefits of Dual Transactions For the Modern Trucking Company

Improving the day-to-day operations of a trucking company can positively affect the entire supply chain and shipping network. The benefits dual transactions offer for  transportation companies include the following:

  • Faster response time when capacity availability is noted.
  • Improved supply chain visibility end-to-end across the entire network. 
  • Less idle dwell time between dropping off one container and picking up another.
  • Greater flexibility to adapt to changes in capacity and availability.
  • More effortless scalability in response to market trends and customer demands.
  • More comprehensive capacity access during lean or difficult times.
  • Improved tracking productivity from start to finish. 
  • Lowers excessive dwell charges and related expenses on empty loads.
  • Faster adaptability to highs and lows and unexpected capacity crunches.
  • Higher profits for drivers and shipping managers alike. 
  • Lower costs, fewer fees, higher yields, and greater returns on investment.

These are just a few ways trucking companies and shipping service providers can benefit from embracing the idea of dual transactions to maximize productivity and make the most of every move made by the fleet. In addition, working with forward-thinking 3PLs keeps costs lower and allows for greater flexibility and adaptability.

Why Companies Fail to Use Dual Transactions

For the average trucking company, the idea of dual transactions is still relatively new and is not something many seem to think about as standard procedure. However, a late 20221 report from Bloomberg showed that trucking and shipping volumes had increased dramatically due to global economic growth among the west coast ports. At the same time, if an issue has plagued the supply chain, the major West Coast hubs, which account for almost 40% of the country's imported goods, have had to deal with it. This ongoing pressure and disruption cause many companies to fail to use dual transactions.

Lack of Visibility into Container and Truck Status

 When transportation companies cannot perfect container management and cannot find available capacity when and where needed, that lack of visibility makes dual transactions harder to manage and set up. In addition, it is impossible to make accurate capacity utilization and load management decisions when management does not have real-time insight. 

Limited Availability of Trucks and Drivers in the Area

There is no doubt that drivers and truck capacity are at a premium today, and knowing why there is a shortage of truck drivers is something that still stands in the way of more companies using dual transactions to their advantage. However, addressing driver turnover and dissatisfaction issues, and capacity crunches, in general, will help companies better manage their teams.

Warehousing That Is Too Far Away to Access Efficiently

For the average trucking company, a significant obstacle that makes dual transactions more difficult is the lack of a local warehouse and the distance that needs to be traveled to drop off or pick up a trailer for delivery. In addition, when the mileage gets too great, the cost of fuel and empty hauling can become too much and makes these transactions more difficult to pull off effectively.

More Pressure for Long Hauls From Distributions Center Hubs.

Even if a trucking company is keen on utilizing dual transactions, they may be pressured by distribution centers and other partners ad third-parties to opt for more traditional long haul pickups and dropoffs. Truckers who work for other companies do not have much say in what loads they can or cannot pick up and haul.

Not Sure How to Optimize Inbound and Outbound Port Moves

The final obstacle that keeps many transportation companies from utilizing dual transactions is the lack of insight and inability to optimize every step of inbound and outbound freight efficiency and movement. Change is hard, but the failure to adapt and optimize services accordingly puts a significant damper on a company’s ability to grow and adapt to these new processes.

What to Do About the Problem of Poor Dual Transaction Adherence

Managers who oversee the importing and exporting of goods while controlling the daily processes of a typical trucking company can take action today to improve dual transactions, boost productivity, and enhance supply chain operations.  

In a 2020 McKinsey industry sector survey, 100% of respondents experienced production and distribution problems, 91% had issues with suppliers, and 85% struggled with inefficient digital technologies in their supply chains. Overcoming issues with productivity and profitability involved the following steps: 

1. Know the Status of Containers and Drivers at All Times

One of the first things a trucking company needs to do is use real-time data and tracking services to know the location and status of drivers, containers, and the fleet. This allows for faster and easier coordination ad planning in real-time in response to changes in driver status, container availability, and warehousing capabilities.

2. Communicate With Drivers Effectively in Real-Time

Visible supply chain fulfillment services are vital for effective and profitable trucking operations and depend on real-time communication and data-sharing. Drivers and managers must have on-demand access to current data and status reports and communicate effectively on the go, so opportunities are not missed when it comes to dual transaction opportunities.

3. Optimize Drayage Services and Opportunities

The management team of a trucking company, no matter its size, must optimize final mile and first mile services to effectively utilize dual transaction opportunities and maximize profits. Improving the last leg of the shipping journey will ensure a smoother delivery and provide access to additional capacity without a lot of extra effort and expense.

4. Take Advantage of Local Port Warehousing Options

The final step to improving routine shipping services and implementing dual transactions into normal trucking company operations is to tap into local resources and talent. Local drivers, local warehousing, and local trailer and container access make it easier to add dual transactions to the routine loading, unloading, and transporting processes.

Do It All and Boost Dual Transactions for Trucking Company Operations With Port City Logistics

It comes down to streamlining dray freight and mastering inbound and outbound port transactions and fleet movement. 

For the average trucking company, dual transactions can significantly improve processes and provide the competitive advantage needed in today's market. Port City Logistics knows how to help  American truckers grow and perfect their services, so they become the best trucking company today.  

Change is never easy, but it is necessary to continue forward growth and recovery within the shipping and trucking industry today. Contact Port City Logistics today to get started. 

Topics: freight container