If your company has made the decision to execute a market bid for transportation services, there are several key areas to focus on before approaching provider engagement:
Have you clearly identified your short-term and long-term objectives? A high percentage of market bids today focus on cheaper rates with no long-term strategy for service and sustainability.
Have you identified the important services and characteristics required in a partner? Meet with your management team to identify what is required in a transportation provider and have defined deliverables for those areas in the bid.
Answer the question, “What are your pain points today?” Too many shippers fail to clearly develop a road map of success with their transportation provider, based on the resolution of pain points or deficient areas in their supply chain. You have to be able to tell a new provider what you want “fixed” or “bettered” from the status quo.
Negotiating is an art unto itself; remember that you, as the entity providing the bid to the market, control the ground rules for the negotiation. Information transfer, bid review, dates, meeting places, and timelines are all under your control - take it or the transportation providers will.
It also helps to include visual aids in your bid; not just text and numbers. Providing a service matrix or diagram of your preferred IT connectivity will go a long way in explaining what you are trying to accomplish, and that detail will lead to a better result from your efforts.
Learn more about the benefits of partnering with GTS.