Cabot Creamery doesn’t have any problem making world famous Cheeses. They have been a leading dairy product retailer in the United States since the co-op was founded in 1919 and their sharp cheddar was named the World’s Best Cheddar at the 2006 World Championship Cheese Contest. With today’s supply chain disruptions, however, Cabot Creamery can find it challenging to get their bread and butter into the hands of their consumers.
Katie Dattilio, the Transportation Logistics Supervisor for Cabot, plays a significant role in giving the people what they want: a variety of world famous cheeses. Part of this requires her to predict future streams of business, and logistics professionals’ crystal balls have never been murkier. Cabot and other food shippers exposed to the same market dynamics historically depended on being able to segment the year into peak and off-peak seasons. While this seasonality has all but disappeared, many shippers are still preparing to offer annual RFPs for 2022 as they would in any given year, and the traditional logistic marketplaces don’t provide the data insights and flexibility necessary for logistics professionals like Katie to guarantee successful outcomes.
The typical RFP process requires shippers to send out countless emails, which need to be compiled, processed, and organized to award lanes to carriers. Katie found that she could use RFP Guide to avoid the spot market and keep freight moving on time: “RFP Guide has saved us so much time. It has eliminated the unnecessary back-and-forth emails, and we know the information being sent back will be quick and accurate.” RFP Guide makes the contract process easy, organized, and allows shippers to set their own timeline for contract bidding – giving them control while using an advanced technology solution.
Even still, many shippers have a hard time realizing the value that technology creates; learning to operate new software can be a lengthy process. Katie found the learning curve to be minimal: “There are people in our office who are not very tech-savvy and all of them have been able to use RFP Guide with minimal assistance. A couple of walk-throughs is all that was needed to roll it out to our entire team.” She added, “We have a harder time remembering our password than using the actual software.”
When you have a tool that can be easily adopted, shippers can then begin to realize the value of real-time market data. The pricing algorithm of RFP Guide is powered by more than 500 market data sources including DAT, Sonar, Truckstop, as well as proprietary data, allowing for a single, predictable pricing guide. “Our costs at Cabot were going up and we had no way to show leadership how well we were buying relative to our competitors in the current market,” Katie said. “Now, we pull a report from RFP Guide and quickly identify the lanes where we’re buying below the market and the ones we need to improve on.”
As the logistics industry increasingly embraces technology, instant, dynamic prices on the spot market have created much more flexibility, adaptability, and transparency in the freight market. Katie now has to smile when she hears that the RFP process is broken, knowing that she has found a solution to fix it: “It’s so simple to use that we are actually having fun checking in to see who has quoted,” Katie said.
Learn more about RFP Guide by clicking here.
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