Had A Bad Experience with a Logistics Provider? Here’s How to Avoid It!

Read Time: 4 min. 

There are few things worse than putting your trust in a vendor, only to have everything go wrong. If you’ve had a bad experience with a 3PL, we won’t blame you for being hesitant to move forward with a new one. When things go wrong, it affects just about every aspect of your business, including customer satisfaction. And if you don’t have that, your business will suffer. There’s little doubt about that.

But we want you to know, not all logistics providers are terrible! DTS works around the clock to establish strong, long-term relationships that are based on trust. Our success is your success—and that’s the bottom line.

What Does a Bad 3PL Look Like?

If you’ve never worked with a logistics provider before, you might not recognize signs of trouble. So, let’s start there. If you experience things like:

· Outdated technology or lack of technology puts you (and the provider) at a disadvantage. A good 3PL offers cloud-based tracking, so you’ll know where your shipment is at all times.

· Poor communication is just bad business. Your logistics provider needs to be responsive to your needs and offer multiple ways to get in touch. Ideally, you’ll also need a point person, someone who knows your business and can act on your behalf.

· Inefficient international shipping processes delay your time-to-market and potentially put you behind the competition. You can’t afford to work with a 3PL that lacks experience and resources in this area!

· Inexperience with customs will cost you both time and money. Choose a 3PL with a solid track record in export markets to ensure your cargo gets where it’s supposed to be on time and as expected.

· Improper packaging results in broken products, delayed deliveries, and unhappy customers. You need to work with a logistics provider that understands crating and packaging so your cargo arrives safe and intact.

How to Be the Best Logistics Manager: 7 Secrets for Success

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How to Avoid a Bad Logistics Experience

If you’ve been on the receiving end of poor logistics services, have no fear! Here are a few tips to ensure you always choose wisely, but always remember, transparency and technology are fundamental pillars that contribute to your success.

· Always verify the logistics provider’s experience and reputation. Read online reviews to see what others are saying.

· How extensive is their network? Your 3PL needs to be able to accommodate your shipping needs. If your plans exceed their capacity, don’t compromise.

· Take your future growth plans into consideration. It makes no sense to have a logistics partner that can’t scale with you.

· How flexible and agile are they? If they hesitate to offer real solutions to your needs or can’t answer your questions, perhaps they are not the right 3PL for you.

· Drill down to the nitty-gritty. Don’t be afraid to ask for references, case studies, and data that will inform your decision.

· Ask yourself what metrics and stats matter most and make an informed decision based on those numbers.

Identifying these critical points early will help you recognize any concerns—but you can reduce the risk of accidents, inconvenience, and delays by hiring a reputable, full-service 3PL like DTS.

At DTS, we offer innovative systems to enable visibility into the status of all processes. We also carry all the certifications and documentation you need to be confident of a smooth ride every time.

Call today to speak to us about your needs. We’d love to show you how we can help.

How To Boost Your Company’s Efficiency with a Logistics Partner

Read Time: 4 min. 

A strong logistics partner boosts efficiency, which translates to happier customers and, in many cases, significant cost reductions. In an environment where we’ve learned to expect the unexpected, a logistics partner like DTS eases your pain points and lets you focus on what you do best.

The Benefits of Working with an Experienced Logistics Partner

As the complexities of doing business globally continue to mount, smart business owners rely on top expertise and advanced tools to ensure they stay competitive in every way. Without such supports and advice, growth would be impossible as there are always new players ready to take your place in the market.

Here are a few of the ways a logistics partner helps.

  1. Relationships, technology, and insight. The logistics landscape is the most volatile it’s ever been. Dealing with constantly changing regulations and other factors would be impossible for anyone not “in the know.” Our strong relationships, best-in-class technology, and years of dedicated insight allow us to offer reliable services at competitive prices. We are your ally in every sense of the word.
  2. Experience with highly specialized topics. DTS has 20 years of experience in international trade, customs, and import-export. With affiliated offices worldwide, we can assure your cargo gets where it’s supposed to be when it’s supposed to be there. Our experience with customs documentation, export classification, incoterms, and cost optimization are unparalleled and designed to help you grow.

How to Be the Best Logistics Manager: 7 Secrets for Success

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3. Personalized service and attention to detail. Working with us is like having a true partner in every sense of the word. We’re more than just a carrier; we are an end-to-end solutions provider that won’t settle for anything less than perfection. It’s our dedication to customer satisfaction and customer-centric attitude that got us where we are today. We’re always looking for ways to evolve, and we know it’s the little things that count. If there’s an opportunity to go above and beyond, you can bet we’ll do it.

4. Innovative technology combined with the most reliable transportation methods guarantees the ideal result—which is, inarguably, on-time deliveries, predictable prices, and happy customers. Our systems are connected to a vast network of carriers across multiple modes, and our agile approach means we can optimize shipments on the fly to improve our metrics—and yours.

5. Visibility and transparency. We leverage the latest technology to gain visibility into your cargo information in real-time. You’ll know where your goods are at any given moment so you can communicate verified information to your customers and other stakeholders.

6. Sustainability and environmental responsibility is an ongoing commitment for us, and we all take great care to reduce our environmental footprint. This means consolidating loads when possible, using the right transportation mode, and carefully crating and packaging to minimize breakage and unnecessary waste. We are always looking at new technologies and modes of transport to ensure we are ahead of the environmental curve in every way.

Talk to The Experts At DTS

Find out how partnering with a logistics specialist like DTS can help you boost efficiency and lower costs: request a quote today.

Are You Ready for Peak Shipping Season?

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The past couple of years have been nothing if not unpredictable. However, if the supply chain roller coaster has taught us anything, it’s that we need to be prepared.

Before the pandemic, seasonal surge was something we could plan for without too much difficulty. But with delays and capacity shortages now becoming the status quo, we can expect the challenges to be amplified. Additionally, the industry-wide labor shortage is a critical concern.

And while none of this is convenient at any time of the year, there are ways to mitigate the damage and stress to ensure peak shipping season goes as well and as smoothly as it possibly can.

Preparing for Peak Shipping Season: Your Action Plan

Here are a few actionable tips to help you weather the peak season.

Be Realistic About Your Budget

Transportation costs have been steadily rising across all modes of transport. Industry insiders predict overseas shipping costs will increase dramatically as demand starts to pick up. Project your cost estimates and budget accordingly to avoid unwelcome surprises. Shop around for competitive rates now before everything gets booked up. The earlier you can book carrier space, the better it will be for your bottom line.

Expect Delays

Most delays are beyond your control, but there are ways to control the damage that ensues. By informing your customers in advance and factoring in extra lead times and “delivered by” times, you’ll avoid angry confrontations.

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Do what you can to control whatever is within your power to control. For example, ensuring your warehouse is organized for fast loading and unloading is a good way to optimize your crew’s efforts. Technology is your friend here as the right WMS ensures everyone has the correct information and documentation to do their jobs efficiently.

Consider Alternative Options

Redundancy is the key to the kingdom! If you can use alternate delivery options, like air freight, it gives you some leeway if your preferred method falls short. Freight consolidation and multi-modal transportation are additional options you can consider. Ask your 3PL provider about these options and if they are appropriate for your needs.

How DTS Helps

Working with an experienced 3PL like DTS helps you prepare for the complexities of seasonal surge. We will work closely with you to ensure your shipments comply with domestic and international regulations so you can be confident they will arrive as expected.

Over the past 20 years, we have established strong relationships with carriers in all modes of transport. Our customers rely on us for on-time deliveries and transparent communication, and they know we’ll do whatever it takes to get their cargo to its destination on time. We are more than just another vendor—we partner with our customers to ensure their success, and we’ll do everything possible to ensure satisfaction.

Speak to us today about your seasonal needs. We are a licensed freight forwarder with dedicated expertise in export markets, logistics, crating and packaging, customs, and export documentation, and we’d love to show you how we can help.

What Is the Main Role of a Customs House Broker? And Why Is It So Important to Have A “Trust Partner” On This?

Read Time: 4 min. 

Customs house brokers do so much more than just managing customs-related matters. They also play a critical role in facilitating international trade, including ensuring security, trade compliance, and every link in the supply chain. As such, they are a vital component of your company’s financial health and can help to ensure continuity and customer success.

What Is a Customs Broker (Company)?

If you are doing business internationally and shipping goods overseas, having a trusted customs broker on your side is essential. In today’s volatile trade landscape, trade regulations change frequently. It’s a customs broker’s job to make sure your cargo complies with these rules so you can spend more time managing your business.

What Does a Customs Broker Do?

Customs processes are sometimes complex but always highly detailed. If your paperwork is incorrect or incomplete, customs officials in the destination country can hold your goods until the problem is resolved—a process that could hold up your arrivals by weeks or even months.

Using a customs house broker is always a wise decision, as it ensures your goods are categorized correctly and that the paperwork is submitted to standards. As these standards vary considerably from country to country, it’s essential to be up to date on what’s required; and, perhaps more importantly, what’s not allowed.

Some of the services a customs house broker offers include:

The Role of Licensed Customs Brokers in Facilitating International Trade

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  • Documentation
  • Clearing imported shipments
  • Collecting taxes and duties as required
  • Advising on how to grow your business by leveraging free trade agreements
  • Liaising with customs officials at the destination to ensure product integrity and quality control/assurance

Why Should I Hire a Customs Broker?

Hiring a customs broker is much like onboarding a high-level team member. You’re adding an element of leadership and value that will bring your international business to new levels and increasing the security, reliability, and profitability of your efforts.

Late shipments tend to push customers to other suppliers, but when your customer knows they can count on you, you’ll gain loyalty and build relationships built on trust. If a customs broker could help you accomplish that, why wouldn’t you work with one?

Like any valued partner, your customs broker is invested in your success and will do whatever it takes to ensure you meet your targets. In today’s competitive world, having a customs house broker on your side is not just smart—it’s essential.

Choosing a Customs Broker

When choosing a customs broker, it’s important to do your due diligence. Some of the questions you should ask include:

  • How long have they been in business?
  • Are they licensed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection?
  • Do they have additional certifications, such as Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism? (Certifications like this one tend to make the clearance process faster)
  • Do they have experience in your industry niche?
  • Do they use the latest technology?
  • What are their customers saying about them?

Do not settle for less than 100% on any of these points.

DTS is a reliable customs broker with a reputation for excellence in all international trade matters. No matter what markets you are entering or what kind of goods you are shipping, working with a logistics company like DTS World Cargo reduces risk, improves profits, and simplifies documentation and compliance from end-to-end.

Reach out today to learn more about how we can help.

Trends in Transportation Costs

Read Time: 4 min. 

The past few years have been incredibly volatile where transportation costs are concerned. Even before the pandemic, we saw wild fluctuations in fuel pricing, tariffs, embargos, and all manner of uncertainty in global trade.

Once the pandemic took hold, demand increased, capacity decreased, and we’ve been dealing with unprecedented container shortages, all of which contribute to the current trends in transportation costs.

Profitability hinges on having visibility into what’s happening in transportation and how these events are affecting service and costs. Now, more than ever, you need strong partnerships with providers you can count on—and a couple of backup plans in case things don’t go as expected. To stay on top of costs and what’s driving them, your strategy, compliance, and performance must be reviewed continuously so you can change course quickly if indicated.

Transportation Trends to Watch in 2021

Here are some of the top trends we expect to see for the remainder of 2021 and into 2022. These situations are ongoing and likely won’t change significantly until ports begin to open up in South China and container inventory redistributes.

  • Capacity demands push rates higher for full truckload markets. The global container shortage, labor shortage, and increasing capacity demand are creating delays and pushing smaller shipments into LTL lanes. Intermodal options are more challenging as transit times and rates continue to increase.
  • Costs continue to increase while service declines in LTL, driven by capacity challenges and targeted embargoes still in place. Add to this the widespread labor shortage that’s affecting both drivers and dock workers. Parcel service levels are in crisis, pushing more volume to LTL through freight consolidation, and surcharges continue to trend higher.

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  • Small parcel carriers anticipate holiday peak with no added capacity. The ecommerce explosion of the past year has consumed all available capacity, heralding a challenging seasonal surge as carriers struggle to meet the demand. Even with on-premise retail coming back, most analysts expect this trend to continue. 
  • International shipping still bears the brunt of the pandemic. Global supply chains continue to see disruption, fueled in particular by port closures in Southern China. Demand will continue to rise as capacity, and container supply continues to diminish. U.S. port congestion is starting to ease up, but it’s still challenging and expected to remain through 2022.
  • Demand for air freight is at its peak, increasing costs and creating capacity issues that will only worsen as passenger flights return. As a result, any contingency plan you had that involves international air freight is limited and certainly not guaranteed.
  • Fuel prices are driving up costs everywhere. Diesel fuel prices rose more than 32% since November 2020, directly affecting transportation costs. We’re seeing a steady increase month over month, and fuel surcharges will continue a factor for all over-the-road freight in the foreseeable future.

At DTS, we work hard to meet today’s challenges so we can continue to serve our customers with the highest possible level of service. We’re always watching the trends and innovating ways to optimize operations and reduce costs so we can pass along those benefits to you.

Logistics Performance: How DTS Team Spirit Is Making A Difference

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No matter what you do or what industry you’re in, you can’t get anything done without people. At DTS, our people are our most precious resource, and we know that together, there is no problem we can’t solve for our customers.

We combine decades of experience in logistics with an unshakable commitment to getting the job done right—but even though we are all highly skilled and experienced in our own right, it’s teamwork that really sets us apart. Together, there are few problems we can’t solve, and there’s no challenge too great.

The Importance of Teamwork in Logistics

Teamwork is the essence of what we do. In logistics, this is an incredibly vital attribute because we deal with so much complexity every day. From multi-carrier shipments to less-than-load optimization, express air freight, dealing with international customs, and more, we rely on each other to ensure a reliable, predictable, and successful process from end to end.

Within our DTS family, everybody knows exactly what to do and when to do it. Sometimes it feels like we’re thinking the same thoughts, but it’s only because we share a deep understanding of what needs to be done and how to make it happen.

How A Freight Forwarder Can Become A Logistics Manager’s Best Ally

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Our team is diverse, and this is part of our strength. Each member brings a different viewpoint to the table, so we know that at the end of the day, no ideas go unexplored, and everybody has a voice. This level of camaraderie instills each one of us with team spirit, which is the fuel that powers our performance.

The Benefits of Teamwork in Logistics

Here are a few of the ways our teamwork helps us make a difference:

· Excellent communication. We prioritize communication, and everybody knows they have a voice in any situation. Team members are encouraged to express their concerns as we know that is the best way to identify and solve potential problems.

· High level of commitment. Each of us is 100% committed to each task and willing to work together to ensure the best possible outcome. We know we can rely on each other to do more than their share and step up when extra support is needed.

· Mutual trust. Mutual trust is at the heart of all we do. When there is a problem, no matter how critical, we know we can solve it together.

· Listen before action. We have a deep respect for one another’s opinions because we know that we are stronger together. By doing so, we are always able to reach a resolution that works for everybody.

· Knowledge of company operations. The DTS team works together like a well-tuned clock. We know how the company works, who is responsible for what, and how the individual jobs we do contribute to the end result. Because of this, we can maintain a high level of continuity, even when one team member is absent.

DTS is a family-owned and operated business, and we’ve built our reputation on our commitment to quality and customer satisfaction. Teamwork and family are the foundations our company is built on, and excellence is in our DNA. Reach out today to tell us about your logistics needs. We’d love to show you how we can help you grow.

Ecommerce And Logistics: A Winning Combination

Read Time: 4 min. 

The past year has been remarkable in so many ways. Consumers and businesses alike were forced into new ways of operating, and there’s no question that ecommerce was at the center of it all.

The Pandemic-Driven Rise of Ecommerce

Ecommerce growth was stratospheric in 2020, with 44% growth over 2019—nearly triple that of previous years—and representing 21.3% of all global retail sales. Of that number, Amazon accounted for one-third of that number. But it could never have happened without logistics.

As more retailers made the switch to online selling, a reliable logistics partner was the key to their success. Demand was high for next-day and last-mile deliveries as items not typically sold online, like groceries, became an essential need. According to some estimates, 35% of households in the United States now purchase their groceries online.

But even as the restrictions start to ease and shopping goes back to “normal,” it’s doubtful that consumers will change their ways. Having realized the convenience of ecommerce, there’s no going back, and that’s largely due to the logistics industry and its ability to step up.

Innovation Rules in Logistics Management

High demand for warehouse space and more capacity and volume drove costs higher for logistics providers, but most consumers did not see those increases reflected in their fees.

Instead of passing the cost along to the customer, providers chose to innovate, finding ways to optimize operations using technology like automation, artificial intelligence, digital freight matching, and warehouse management software (WMS). As a result, we saw a massive acceleration in these areas and now have better supply chain visibility than we’ve ever experienced.

How can DTS become a growth lever for your business?

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A Good Logistics Partner is Essential For Ecommerce Success

For retailers making a move to online selling or new ecommerce businesses starting up in the wake of the pandemic, ensuring goods get to the customer on time is key. However, cost is an even more significant concern. After all, if shipping eats up your margin, what’s the point in being in business?

How DTS Can Help You

When you choose DTS World Cargo as your logistics partner, you’re investing in the future of your business. Customer experience is the single most important factor in business growth, so you need to be sure you’re surrounding yourself with people and companies that share your commitment. DTS is that kind of logistics provider.

We have a reputation as a customer-centric 3PL, as our clients know we always go the extra mile to help them succeed. Our experience, industry relationships, and out-of-the-box thinking ensure the best possible results, even in challenging situations such as we’ve endured through the pandemic.

Whether you’re a local ecommerce startup or an established retailer with a global audience, we have solutions to help you grow. We’ll work with you to ensure we help you achieve the best possible value, and you can rely on us for accurate quotes, documentation, and next-level services, such as last-mile delivery, export documentation, crating and packaging, and much more.

Reach out today to tell us more about your logistics needs. We’d love to show you how we can help you grow.