The continued weakness of sterling against the US dollar since the EU referendum in 2016 has hit companies hard and pushed up their freight costs by 15-20%. You may wonder why? It’s because most freight rates are quoted in USD, so when the pound weakens, it has a direct impact on air and ocean freight costs.
This presents many customers with a dilemma, as they either have to live with lower margins or they’re forced to raise their own prices. They often suspect that their logistics costs are high but also know that they don’t have the time, resources or expertise to carry out an exercise like this successfully and professionally, and they certainly don’t want to put their existing supply chain at further risk – so they put it on the back burner. Sound familiar?
At Straightforward Consultancy, our considerable experience and market knowledge allows us to quickly assess where savings and service improvements can be made and, with our shared savings fee model, the freight review is self-funding and delivers significant net savings to your bottom line, money you can invest in other areas of your business.
Since 2010, we’ve delivered average savings of 35%, and as much as 60% in one case - and this was before the fall in the value of sterling!
But let’s be clear - this isn’t just a cost down approach - it’s important to us that the new service works even better than before. We achieve this by re-assessing the customer’s needs before we start and making these a key part of the request for quotation (RFQ) process and the new operational model.
Once implemented, we monitor service levels and costs closely, providing the client with a great source of expert advice and support. We also re-negotiate freight rates as and when they expire, keeping your costs competitive, clearly defined and under tight control.
Many customers find our service to be so invaluable that they stay with us long term, using our Freight Management service and become in effect, a larger customer as part of our total freight portfolio, gaining long-term preferential rates and being insulated from unexpected cost increases in the future.
Our freight reviews are very thorough and include:
Your initial consultation with SCL is free and without any obligation. We then carry out an assessment to review your activity and identify savings so you know how much you could save – and how we could also improve things operationally.
"After meeting with Andy to discuss our requirements, we were impressed with his professional yet friendly approach as well as his confidence that he would be able to cut our freight costs” Louise Maoudj, Operations Director, Peak Drink Dispense
"What really surprised us were the resulting financial benefits (+£100K saving on freight costs) and in addition, there was also a significant improvement in service levels, and the shared savings model was particularly liked by senior management” Jim Hickey, Procurement Manager, Magnesium Elektron
"Not everyone has the time to scrutinise freight invoices to check the costs are correct, especially when the freight forwarders try to bamboozle you with trade jargon to disguise the hidden costs” Neil Barlow, Director, New World Air Brake
"I would have no hesitation in recommending the services of Straightforward Consultancy if you are looking for better service and rates from your carriers, and maintenance of those in the longer term” Paul Critchlow, Managing Director, Distinctive Medical
"In summary it’s clear that Andy’s extensive knowledge has added a great deal of value to our supply chain and it’s a pleasure to have him on our team” Steve Gaskell, Supply Chain Manager, Mast Group
"We engaged Straightforward Consultancy as we could see that our air freight costs had risen over time and service levels had dropped, however we didn’t have the time or expertise to carry out a review ourselves” Steve Goldstraw, Managing Director, Staffordshire Hydraulics Services"
"The project has realised significant savings for us and we continue to enjoy pro-active support to ensure that these benefits are maintained” Kevin Bradd, Supply Chain Manager, Otter Controls
"Attention to detail, full knowledge of the shipping business from the sides of both the freight forwarder and customer ensure Straightforward Consultancy offer real added-value to our company” Mark Daintith, Purchasing Manager, Middleby UK