Posted April 23, 2024

Exclusive: How Yard Management Solutions Can Improve Your Bottom Line

3PL yard management solutions to help businesses innovate and organize yard operations.

By Brian Kelly, VP of Support Services for Premier Transportation

Although the supply chain and logistics industry has undergone significant technological advancement in the past several years, yard management is one area that is still often overlooked.

Historically, yard management is a paper-driven process. Though this was once the most effective way to track yard activity, this method now results in operators being unable to manage resources effectively which leads to redundancies and inefficiencies that result in increased labor costs and unnecessary delays.

In a time where efficiency and customer satisfaction are paramount, businesses are increasingly looking to third-party logistics providers (3PLs) who provide yard management solutions to help them innovate and organize their yard operations. These experts help businesses not only streamline processes but help implement technology-driven solutions, such as yard management systems (YMS) that provide real-time visibility into yard activities, ultimately driving down costs and increasing customer satisfaction through enhanced service levels.

By 2030, the global market for YMS systems is expected to reach $11.9 billion. With the right 3PL, businesses can leverage these on-the-rise solutions to maximize their logistics.

The downsides of poor yard management
One of the primary challenges to good yard management is an inefficient use of space, leading to congestion and disorganization. Another is a lack of real-time visibility into yard activities and inventory. Both are caused by ineffective communication and coordination between warehouse, transportation and yard operations, leading to difficulty in tracking and managing trailer movements and detention times.

This lack of organization causes operational inefficiencies, wastes resources and can cause compliance issues when meeting industry regulations and safety standards. Long-term, this can harm a business’s reputation and they’ll be more likely to fall short when delivering on customer expectations.

The benefits of working with a 3PL for yard management solutions
By leveraging the expertise, manpower and technology a 3PL and their yard management solutions can deliver for yard management, these obstacles can easily be overcome.

For example, a yard management company will help you implement solutions such as RFID tagging, GPS tracking and automation to maximize the utilization of your yard space. Real-time visibility into yard activities provides accurate and timely information on inventory levels, trailer movements and yard operations. This increased visibility empowers shippers to make informed decisions, improve planning and respond swiftly to changing conditions.

Another example is automated scheduling and task assignment solutions, which help ensure the efficient movement of trailers and goods, leading to faster turnaround times and increased productivity. This helps reduce detention times, minimize labor expenses through automation and optimized workflows and decrease transportation costs due to improved trailer utilization and turnaround times, ultimately resulting in cost savings.

Engaging with a 3PL for yard management also contributes to better customer service by ensuring timely deliveries, reducing lead times, and enhancing order accuracy. With improved yard management operations, you can meet customer expectations more effectively, leading to higher satisfaction levels and increased loyalty.

Long term, working with a yard management provider also offers more opportunity to scale in the future. That’s because these providers’ solutions are designed to scale alongside their clients' evolving needs. Whether it's expanding operations, accommodating seasonal fluctuations, or integrating new technologies, you can rely on your yard management provider to deliver scalable and flexible solutions that grow with your business.

How to measure the success of your third-party yard management solutions
In addition to streamlining processes, ensuring efficient utilization of yard space and resources, successful yard management translates to reduced congestion, minimized idle time for assets and ultimately, higher operational efficiency.

To measure the success of your yard management solutions provider, you can calculate your savings from reduced detention times, improved space utilization and decreased labor costs. You can also measure improvements in inventory accuracy and order fulfillment rates.

If your organization is still using legacy systems for yard management, now is the time to consider upgrading. Engaging a 3PL guarantees you access to experts who understand yard management from top to bottom and can help you implement the right processes, tools and staff to create more efficient, seamless operations. CS

About the Author
Brian Kelly currently serves as VP of Support Services for Premier Transportation. His expertise spans carrier and 3PL consolidation, pool distribution, cross dock, layout optimization, carrier management, multi-functional P&D and distribution fleets, and leading in supply chain investigations, security, loss prevention, and asset protection.

For more information about Premier Transportation, click here.