Of course, individual company data is used to track shipments, analyze cost/profit and measure performance against targets, for the benefit of the individual client as well as providing business information to management. However, LSPs and freight forwarders’ operating systems potentially also hold a high volume of valuable information on trends and performance – by sector/sub-sector, by route/lane, by service provider. There are significant possibilities for LSPs and freight forwarders themselves in terms of planning and strategy development if they can put in place the right tools and processes to manage and manipulate the data they already possess.
An even more compelling proposition is the possibility of utilizing big data commercially. By grouping, analyzing and modeling the data they already hold within their freight forwarding / TMS / WMS systems, freight forwarders and LSPs could, in theory, provide value-added services to their clients. These might include benchmarking of carrier performance, costs and reliability of route/modality, resulting in an additional income stream or USP."