Follow us on Twitter!
Blog Header Logo
DG&A's Transportation Consulting Blog
Posted by on in Freight Bids
  • Font size: Larger Smaller
  • Hits: 966
  • Print

Freight Bid Tip # 6 - Meet Face-to-Face with Potential Carriers and Perform Due Diligence


We live in an era of impersonal communication. E mails, text messages, tweets and GoToMeetings have replaced face to face communication in many instances.

The decision to award millions or tens of millions of dollars in freight transportation to a set of carriers is a very important one. You don’t want to entrust your company’s business and reputation to poor service providers that say they will meet your needs and don’t deliver. You don’t want to commit your business to carriers that offer low pricing to secure the contract and then come back a few weeks later with a rate increase, claiming they misunderstood the bid. These situations happen all too often and they can be very disruptive and financially punitive to shippers.

It is our view that the bid evaluation and award process cannot be done effectively through automated computer programs. There is a requirement to meet “eyeball to eyeball” with companies that may be your future business partners. These meetings should have a formal agenda. In addition to pricing issues, there is value in reviewing the carriers’ operations in detail. This includes:

a) fleet size and age

b) key lanes of traffic, head haul and backhaul

c) safety ratings

d) customer service operations

e) information systems

f) warehousing capabilities

g) weekend and off-hours services

h) financial situation (e.g. Operating Ratio) and

i) value-added services.

Also, don’t overlook the obvious. Who does the trucking company send to meet with you, how are they dressed and how well are they able to explain the services they offer? Does the company send a sales person or is this person accompanied by a terminal manager or director of operations who truly understands the details of the business and can make commitments based on personal knowledge?

Use these meetings to communicate exactly what you expect from your carriers. Take the time to refresh the information on your incumbent carriers and evaluate prospective new ones. If your company embarks on a freight bid project, don’t rush this important step.


To stay up to date on Best Practices in Freight Management, follow me on Twitter @DanGoodwill or join the Freight Management Best Practices group on LinkedIn or subscribe to Dan’s Transportation Newspaper (



  • No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment

Leave your comment

Guest Saturday, 24 June 2017

Most Recent Posts


Tag Cloud

Canadian freight market Deferred Packaging BNSF Doug Davis Werner IANA Training New Hires Career Advice capacity shortages Twitter University of Tennessee 2014 freight forecast Retail transportation Truckload Trump peak season driver shortages derailments FCA UP Business skills LTL 2012 Transportation Business Strategies. Jugaad shipping ShipMax shipping wine CSA Yield Improvement RFP Conway Canada freight payment Education Derek Singleton marketing Business Strategy Hudsons Bay Company Transcom Fleet Leasing bulk shipping solutions provider Right Shoring freight payment freight audit New York Times NMFC Transportation Buying Trends Survey intermodal Crisis management USA Truck Inbound Transportation transportation news shipper-carrier contracts CITA Shipper Pulse Survey carrier conference Transplace drones Rail truck drivers shipper-carrier roundtable TMS shipper-carrier collaboration Map-21 Microsoft Fire Phone Schneider Logistics Broker Carriers Leadership hiring process Failure dynamic pricing Reshoring Masters in Logistics Emergent Strategy Loblaw Success failure entrepreneur US Manufacturing JB Hunt CP Rail LinkedIn Canadian Transportation & Logistics Colilers International Software Advice freight broker Driving for Profit Transloading 360ideaspace freight transportation in 2011 NAFTA Transport Capital Partners (TCP) freight costs automation future of freight industry buying trucking companies Canada's global strategy Toronto Business Transformation Strategy the future of transportation Canadian economy Freight Carriers Association of Canada Canada U.S. trade Freight Management energy efficiency capacity shortage Entrepreneur pipelines economic forecasts for 2012 Global experience consumer centric LCV's David Tuttle economy professional drivers Regina cheap oil 2013 Economic Forecast Sales Training Omni Channel transportation audit Associates driver Ferromex freight rate increases Accessorial Charges Sales Management Dan Goodwill Trucking Transportation service Retail autonomous vehicles Distribution freight transportation conference Dedicated Contract Carriage e-commerce Dedicated Trucking US Housing Market Rotman School of Business broker bonds Life Lessons freight transportation $75000 bond freight bid Rate per Mile Load broker financial management robotics Freight contracts US Auto Sales Infrastructure APL Finance and Transportation Freight Shuttle System Tracy Matura Social Media in Transportation Surety bond Search engine optimization NCC CN Bobby Harris customer engagement coaching KCS Scott Monty CRM CSA scores selling trucking companies routing guide freight audit Adrian Gonzalez Cleveland Cavaliers Canada-U.S. trade agreement YRC EBOR Muhammad Ali Crude Oil by Rail Packaging Keystone Pipeline Swift broker security Freight Capacity TMP Worldwide Freight Rates employee termination Success mentoring 3PL business start-up Spanx rail safety Transportation Job satisfaction CN Rail Wal-Mart truck driver NS small business freight agreements ProMiles Politics Stephen Harper Trade Vision Celadon transportation newspaper Warehousing Freight Shipper Donald Trump Doug Nix Otto Driver Shortage FMCSA Social Media Global Transportation Hub Climate Change freight forwarders driverless Management FCPC network optimization BlueGrace Logistics Harper Davos speech Canadian truckers Facebook MBA freight cost savings trucking company acquisitions 2015 Economic Forecast US Election dimensional pricing US Economy tanker cars President Obama Freight Recession MPG FuelQuest Training Blogging 3PLTL 2014 economic forecast Horizontal Supply Chain Collaboration Comey Amazon FMS fuel surcharge freight RFP TransForce home delibery Railway Association of Canada Consulting CSX 2014 freight volumes

Blog Archives