Suppose you have done all the necessary work from proper packaging to precisely filling out all of the required paperwork, to selecting the correct NMFC freight classification – now the shipment is out for delivery and out of your hands. But don’t worry, LTL freight tracking allows you to stay connected to your shipment from the initial point to the endpoint.
In this article, we will gain an understanding of LTL freight tracking terms, what are their role in the tracking process and the benefits of tracking for any kind of business.
Ways to track your LTL freight shipment
With the LTL tracking process, you can easily log onto your computer and check whether or not they can expect some kind of delays along the way(like bad weather, accidents, or traffic) and adjust expectations.
While there are many ways to keep tabs on your items, one of the most efficient ways is to put the bill of lading (BOL) number into your carrier or service provider’s website. BOL serves as a receipt of goods between a freight carrier and shipper and is important to the LTL shipment process as a whole.
The information mentioned in the bill of lading includes:
• Shipper and receiver (consignee) names and along with their complete addresses.
• PO or special account numbers.
• Specific handling instructions for the shipment
• Shipment schedule, shipping units, and measurements.
• Shipment Packaging types such as crates, pallets or drums
• Detailed Description of products.
• The declared value of items.
But in case the BOL isn’t handy, most of the major carriers and freight service company use the online resources to track the shipment with other assigned numbers:
• A transportation management system (TMS): a software that stores shipping information and also provides tracking information. A TMS performs all the tasks from simplifying the carrier selection process to making important routing decisions.
• Pro number: the carrier assigns this to recognize a shipment once it has picked up. This number can be used to trace items during transit and considered as the standard industry tracking number.
• PO number: this key reference number, usually assigned by the purchaser, ties together all paperwork and communications regarding a specific purchase, including payment information.
• Shipment reference number: a number marked by the shippers. It could be a purchase order number, a customer number, a company name, a BOL number.
• Shipment number: typically assigned when freight shipment request initiates.
Other LTL documents to consider
Keep track of all the documents that go into the shipping process for your records, since they can be valuable resources for LTL shipments in the future. Also, if there is damaged or lost freight – having these documents readily available makes freight claims much less challenging.
Things to note:
• Quote summary: a breakdown of services.
• Original invoice of shipment: details of the price associated with the shipment.
• Proof of delivery: allows you to know at what time items reached their destination and who signed for them.
• Note down the truck number, driver name, business name, shipper and receiver locations, fees and required signatures.
• Keep note of freight descriptions, priority, ship quantity, purchase order, order number and customer contact.
Benefits of Freight Tracking
Freight tracking allows the shippers to check where the freight is and communicate with the carrier. Shippers can then get an estimate of how long their shipment will take to be picked up and transported to the intended destination and whether or not they can expect some kind of delays along the way.
With the help of freight tracking, it becomes easier for shippers to inform the customers about the expected time of delivery. It creates overall transparency in the shipping process between the shippers and the customers, thus creating a positive experience for their customers.
For information and updates, visit Tenax Transport.