Why Implement a TMS Series - Part 1

You probably have heard about TMS solutions and how they are becoming one of the main digitalization tools in the supply chain.

You probably have heard about TMS solutions and how they are becoming one of the main digitalization tools in the supply chain. But you may have some open questions or may be wondering how it fits your business’ specific needs and your supply chain strategy. 

In today’s globalized world, shippers face several challenges ranging from carrier capacity shortages to increased pressure to deliver to customers with high expectations, strict sustainability regulations, lack of visibility, and high freight prices. The impact of COVID-19 has reinforced the need to tackle them and to work towards a resilient and competitive supply chain. Today, more than ever, digitalization is the key to overcoming these challenges.

70% of respondents of a recent survey by Supply Chain Media indicate technology as the megatrend that will more substantially impact their supply chain in the years to come. However, less than 50% are fully aware of the benefits that digitalization can bring and how to get started. 

In this blog series, we will discuss topics covering the basics of a TMS, its benefits, current trends, and how to build a business case for it in your organization. 

A Transportation Management System (TMS) is software that companies use to digitally manage their freight operations instead of calling, faxing, or emailing internal and external parties. It often resides between a company’s internal ERP system and its external transport and logistics providers and connects the two for increased supply chain efficiency, communication, and optimization.

Next to the connectivity capability between the shipper and its supply chain partners, a TMS offers a subset of functional modules or capabilities that help companies achieve streamlined logistics flows.Those normally include:
-    Sourcing and procurement
-    Planning
-    Execution
-    Settlement
-    Data analysis

The TMS market is rapidly growing, and you will find several vendors while doing your research. Some vendors offer full TMS solutions, meaning all those capabilities are included in your software from day one -  matter what your digital maturity level is at the moment you implement the solution. Some have limited scope, covering only one or two modules within the end-to-end process. Other providers, like Alpega TMS, offer modular solutions. Alpega TMS is a fully modular and scalable solution can growover time as your challenges and business needs evolve.

For instance, if you only operate road transport, or only locally, you may not need a multi-modal approach. If you want to get started with warehouse scheduling automation, but do not need to focus on procurement yet, there is a standalone module solution that can help you get started with that priority in mind. 

A TMS will take away the headaches caused by the by challenges previously mentioned, by bringing together the different supply chain partners and offering greater visibility of the logistics flows. In our next blog, we will discuss the benefits in detail to help you build a case for your company. 

Want to learn more about the TMS world? You can watch the recording of our webinar introducing TMS, and keep an eye for the second part of this blog series detailing the benefits of a TMS solution. 

The latest insights from the world of transport, logistics and supply chain from our team of in-house experts


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