What Is A Transportation Management System? 4 Benefits for Freight Brokers

What Is A Transportation Management System? 4 Benefits for Freight Brokers

What Is TMS Software?

TMS stands for ‘transportation management system’.

Simply put, TMS software is designed for logistics-intensive businesses to operate their business at higher efficiency while the software handles manual tasking like sourcing, invoicing, accounting, tracking, and more.

TMS can help optimize multiple modes of transportation whether it be TL, LTL, rail, ocean, air, or intermodal. TMS software is meant to streamline freight operations with a multitude of features and capabilities that are generally unseen in traditional freight processes.


Why Use Transportation Management Software?

Transportation management systems are now considered critical technology amongst the freight and transportation management industry. With a vast majority of brokers, 3PLs, and carriers utilizing a TMS or being connected to a TMS through the supply chain.

With such a wide practice of TMS utilization and the advantages provided amongst the industry, brokers and 3PLs are finding that the future of business resides in the flexibility of their TMS software.

Start implementing a high value TMS today.


Main Features of Transportation Management System

Each TMS will have its own capabilities and custom features based on the needs and wants of an organization.

Here are a main set of features and capabilities that can be leveraged from an advanced transportation management system.

  • Order management – Identify, track, and fulfill transport requests among customer orders with simple to use dashboards and lists
  • Load planning, booking, & tendering – Automate the order process from start to finish to ensure a smooth experience for your team and customers
  • Shipping rate management – Optimize and streamline contracts and rates coming in from various carriers and customers
  • Documentation management and security – Download and arrange all documentation in digital form for easy access, improved security, and organization
  • Carrier management – Oversee and control the activities, costs, and performance of carriers within the transportation network
  • Track and monitor in-transit shipments – Manage loads with detailed performance insights, real-time visibility, and dynamic ETAs
  • Handle payment and settlement – Integrate and automate accounting to improve efficiency and prevent costly mistakes on your invoices
  • Reporting, data, dashboards – All-in-one portal for easy access to all your data and insights for better control over the entire operation


What Are the Benefits of TMS Software?

Increased Flow & Time Management – Freight brokers have no surplus of time. TMS software helps manage manual tasks so freight teams can get back to important business operations, letting the software handle the tough stuff.

Higher ROI & Lower Freight Costs – The main goal and focus a TMS system is to cut freight costs. TMS software can help source lowest cost carriers, helping improve profit margins and net ROI for brokers.

Improved Supply Chain Management – Each broker’s supply chain will have its own unique set of challenges, operations, and systems. A transportation management system will mold to current business practices and help elevate them to a higher level of performance and value.

Better Customer Service – TMS helps provide a portal for customers and carriers so users can access more valuable information under the umbrella of their own brand. Access to better data allows for easy communication and notification to customers.


How Much Does TMS Software Cost?

TMS software pricing will largely depend on the features and style of TMS (cloud-based vs licensed).

Cloud-based TMS will generally be priced per load. These users will find costs as low as as $1 per freight load and as much as $4 per freight load.

A hosted or on-premise TMS will have significantly greater upfront costs ($10,000 – $250,000) for the software subscription and management.

Other factors such as integrations, capabilities, and more can affect these pricings.

Descartes Aljex, a cloud-based TMS, offers pricing based per seat (user). Meaning freight teams can book more loads without paying more, while receiving all the benefits of the cloud.


Is a TMS Right for My Brokerage?

While every broker can benefit from a transportation management system, the reality is each business has different needs, goals, and expectations. Brokers need to select and choose from a TMS that offers the most customization and benefits specific to their organization.

Descartes’ new and updated TMS: Aljex Live provides TMS software that serves organizations of all sizes – from mom-and-pop brokerages to billion-dollar industry leaders.


Aljex Live – New TMS Software

Descartes Aljex™ is a scalable, cloud-based solution that automates processes and provides an end-to-end solution for freight brokers & 3PLs. Recently, we’ve updated our software to allow for a more enhanced TMS product to synchronize the technology gap between freight and the digital world.

Descartes Aljex aids freight brokers improve the efficiency and output of their business plan by minimizing manual processes and increasing on-time delivery performance. Our transportation management software lets businesses refine the flow and capabilities of their supply chain, ultimately giving them increased control and simplified processes.


What Features Are Offered by Descartes Aljex TMS?

Order Creation – Automatically fill out and create orders pre-derived information

Dispatch – Ship out, manage, and track deliveries from a single dashboard

Load Tendering – Automate the offering of cargo to multiple carriers to secure the best rates available

Track and Trace – Get real time data on tracking developments to manage your shipments

Lane Pricing – Source the best rates available from an abundance of carriers. Find rates that fit the cost and quality of your business needs the best

Freight Bill Audit & Payment – Examine and verify freight bills for errors to help avoid mistakes and costly payments

Document Imaging – Organize and manage all your documents in one central location. Easy access while still maintaining security of all your information.

Electronic Billing and Payments – Automatically process billing and invoicing with for smooth transactions and accounting

Hosting and Backups – Safe and secure network with cloud-based backups to protect and save documents and data

Load Board Posting – Source capacity through multiple load board postings with the click of a button

Shipment Execution – Freight shipments undergo painstaking planning and work to get to their destinations. TMS software helps optimize the best and safest route so organizations avoid obstacles

Agent Security – With cloud-based infrastructure and industry leading security, agents can securely utilize the Descartes Aljex TMS from anywhere

LTL Management – Manage smaller shipments and pallet sized loads with tools like SAAS integration


Freight Tracking with TMS Software

Descartes Aljex seamlessly integrates with Descartes MacroPoint to allow freight brokers to take advantage of the most sought-after freight needs today… real-time visibility and monitoring.

Load tracking is a capability that allows freight brokers to gain insights and visibility into their freight location while simultaneously receiving updates and alerts on delays, ETA’s, and more. Put an end to manual checks calls and get real-time data that saves time and allows for improvements in business decisions.


Smarter, Faster and More Secure

If your freight brokerage is interested in learning more about a new TMS fit for the challenges of today’s industry, our experts are standing by to help answer any questions you may have about finding the right fit for you operation.

Book a demo with Descartes Aljex today.