01 Dec Sally is the difference between TEAM and brand.
How’s your 2020 going?
It’s December. Christmas is around the corner and then a new year. We’re all ready, right? And even though we’re on the backside of a holiday that reminds us to be thankful, grateful, and hopeful for all we have, many of us are simply ready to kiss 2020 goodbye (if not just shove it out the darned door).
No one understands this better than the manufacturers and distributors like Greg, who are trying to keep their supply chain running smoothly (and cost-effectively). This is a task even during the best of times. From fuel costs and customer service requirements to liability worries, technology implementation, and carrier accountability, it’s always difficult to navigate the ever-changing logistics landscape. And we haven’t even discussed market swings due to environmental, regulatory, or major health events like a worldwide pandemic.
That’s what Greg keeps seeing in 2020. More shifts and reversals than usual. More market upheaval, more e-commerce, higher expectations and higher rates. And who knows when this is going to end?
Greg’s getting tired. And even thought we’ve received some good news with Pfizer, Moderna, and AstraZeneca touting COVID-19 vaccines with 70% to over 90% effective rates, so are lots of manufacturers and distributors. The logistics required to distribute these vaccines are going to be onerous, and they are going to put further stress on an already strained global supply chain.
When Greg called, he was wondering what he could do to create some semblance of consistency and predictability in his own supply chain (and this was before the advent of COVID-19).
The short answer is: work with a freight broker or 3PL. And Greg had been doing that for the past couple of years. Not a lot, but when he was in a bind, he’d reach out to some of the brand name brokers getting a little buzz because of super cool technology or big money investments. Greg found out pretty quickly that brand name wasn’t all it was cracked up to be.
That’s when he called AMT and talked to Sally.
Sally is the difference between a TEAM and a brand.
We’ve talked about the BOX store analogy before, but here it is in a nutshell. A big or brand name 3PL is like a box store. They’re hard to beat for low prices on a variety of goods from t-shirts to paint, but when you need help finding a specific bolt for a mid-century modern table your husband found at auction, it’s awfully nice to talk to an expert. And the folks on the floor at the big box store–they’re not typically experts.
In the same way, when you work with a big or brand name 3PL, you’re not getting the whole company and its vast technological and financial resources. Nope, you get the folks on the team assigned to your business (at Lowe’s these would be the hourly floor staff). We’re talking junior associates with little to zero experience in transportation.
The problem, as Greg found out, is that these big box teams are following a decision tree. They don’t have autonomy to make quick decisions, to keep your freight on the road and delivered on time. These inexperienced junior staffers have to wait for a higher up to approve everything they do.
When Greg called Sally, he told her that his customers were frustrated and angry with dropped, late, or damaged loads. And all that technology he was promised? It wasn’t nearly as effective as an old spreadsheet.
When you work with AMT you work with a team of Sallys.
As Sally explained to Greg, name brand companies aren’t better. And this is especially true when you are looking for specialized services. A smaller freight broker that specializes in working with small to mid-sized manufacturers and distributors offers benefits you might not know about, and Sally is one of them.
Sally and all her colleagues are trained in all aspects of the logistics business. That means they have both the autonomy and the knowledge to make those spur of the moment decisions that save you time and money. At the same time, Sally creates relationships with everyone she works with because she has the time. She isn’t competing with her colleagues, she is working with them to make sure Greg’s business is taken care of.
Like Sally, our team members at AMT have an average tenure of 7 years. They’re not wet-behind-the-ears college graduates looking for a leg up. They’re seasoned professionals with years of experience under their belts.
So what happened to Greg?
He did what a lot of first-time customers do. He gave Sally a load. And then another. And today Greg is a happy customer. You see, he made this move before things went all topsy-turvy due to the pandemic. And he credits his ability to weather the storm in no small part to working with Sally and the team at AM Transport who have offered a variety of solutions to out-of-control freight rates, new government regulations, and service failures, not to mention consistent capacity and great customer service.
If you’d like to know how Sally can help you, give us a call today (we answer our own phones, no voicemail, no phone tree). At AM Transport we don’t succeed unless you succeed.