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Transportation Management Systems

Paper type: Essay
Pages: 5 (1190 words)
Categories: Management,Society,Transport,Transportation
Downloads: 9
Views: 444


Transportation Management Systems (TMS) have changed the way business do business. Dealing with transport planning, TMS changed the method United Parcel Service (UPS) executes their delivery service. Enabling what as soon as was a small service by offering help in managing the shipping and receiving of sellers, producers and providers products, United Parcel Service (UPS) is now an international maintenance business. The adjoined efforts of UPS and its TMS have permitted brick-and-mortar companies to focus on core proficiencies and customer support by eliminating the shipping and receiving responsibility.

In this structure fundamental usages of the TMS within UPS will be gone over. Resolving the aspects that influenced the requirement for a developed transport system, this article will cover the influences associated with the development of a TMS system within companies such as UPS.


Transport management system is a subset of supply chain management (SCM) software application concentrated on transportation logistics. Connecting cities, produces, retailers and customers, this system consolidates shipping and plans location or travel routes.

TMS was presented to the supply chain process in the 1980s (McCrea, 2012). The sole intention of the system development is to make the distribution of products from producers to customers effective and inexpensive. This system is available to business such as United Parcel Service (UPS) in lots of types; standalone software plans, integrated into enterprise resource preparation systems (ERP) or available online in Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). UPS utilizes TMS integrated into the ERP and provides the consumer SaaS options to easily arrange and track the shipment process. The infrastructure of UPS is extensive, specifically adjusted to the requirements of parcel collection. UPS implemented a developed form of transport management in and around 1975. This system included primary delivery carried out by means of public transit or on foot. Shortly after this time UPS progressed, starting with an area they presently service forty-eight additional states ending up being the common provider (in the United States).. During this expansion time of its service area, UPS is thinking globally and shifting its attention to developing a more efficient method of delivery.

TMS transforms UPS

Beginning as a private messenger and delivery service in the nineteen hundreds UPS is a successful developing business. It was during this time phones and transportation were not what they are today. The need for a private messenger, as a form of communication, in urban populated areas was in high demand. Then the telephone evolved and the general public found less of a need for private delivery. Able to have a conversation instantly via the phone service, writing letters was not as popular. Ironically the telephone negatively impacted UPSs and at the same time a boom in department store deliveries came about. Consumers placing phone orders attempt to pick up their purchase, to found out without a vehicle getting the purchases home was nearly impossible. The consumers relied on the retailers to assist in getting the purchases to their requested destination. The department stores discovering that their existing systems were unable to handle the request, invested in the assistance of parcel delivery. UPS became the distribution and or delivery option of the department stores.

This required advancement in UPS TMS system. Business-to-business (B2B) relationships developed supplementing the business lost from no longer servicing as a private messenger. Back in business UPS needed to find a way to effectively take on the increase in demand for delivery service to and from brick-and-mortar businesses. Consolidation of freight is what they did, combining packages addressed to certain neighborhoods onto one delivery vehicle. This optimized cost and cut delivery time down. Consolidation of freight became the key infrastructure for efficient delivery. Time progressed and UPS was still growing; yet again a need for something more efficient came about. Expanding the service from local ground delivery to air travel country wide, air travel was the newest addition to the consolidation of freight. Initially, this cost was more money resulting in a low return on investment (ROI) for the company. However it was a short term loss for a long term gain. As noted by Dr. Jean-Paul Rodrigue, “Since 1988, UPS operates its own airline; UPS Airline. From the hub, UPS delivers to more than 391 national airports and over 219 international ones. By 2001, UPS was offering direct air freight services to China” (UPS; Logistical Management of Distribution Networks, 2014). Adding air flight to the delivery process requires a need for a more structured transportation management system.


While UPS is upgrading its transportation management system (TMS) to fit needs of the brick-and-mortar, manufacturers and suppliers, these companies are advancing as well. Certain economic changes occurred creating a need for online purchasing. These changes stemmed from a drastic increase in gas which resulted in consumers conserving the fuel by limiting the use of there vehicles. This boost in demand for online shopping influenced the strategic developments of businesses such as Amazon.com and Overstock.com; the surge in e-commerce begins. Servicing all over the world by the late nineteen hundreds, UPS developed a strategy involving a path for every parcel. Opening over 2400 distribution centers in various locations the goal is to keep every package moving through the network enabling parcel tracking and package security (Rodrigue, 2014). Each office contained a centralized computer using wide area network (WAN) to connect computers from all the distribution offices as well as the main headquarters. The intelligent hub processed data, transmitted info between devices and allowed for remote management through a hand-held computer device. These devices allowed drivers to access parcel information and make adjustment to travel routes as needed. As parcels travel through the distribution path consumers can monitor their package (sent or received) utilizing Descrates; a SaaS solution service offered to consumers through UPS. As the demand for parcel delivery rapidly rises reduction in fuel consumption is a concern. Future developments of United Parcel Service TMS is focused on transport technology research. Such research is targeted towards alternative fuels and the possibility of electric vehicles. UPS services are in high demand, a future concern is being able to maintain timely delivery. Engineers and geographers study auspicious roads and driving speeds to enhance efficiency and reduce cost.


Implementing a transportation management system has triggered the growth in United Parcel Service area as well as the enterprises ability to provide customers and retailers with efficient and secure delivery or shipping of the parcel. TMS as provided UPS with the support needed to cover a wide variety of services. A few of these services are and not limited to; inexpensive ground delivery, web and retail call centers and warehouse supply chain management. With developments in B2B partnerships or relationships and the increasing demand for online transactions and purchasing, UPS is continuing to develop TMS and the technology to support the system.

McCrea, Bridget (2013). Supply Chain and logistics technology; 8 trends driving TMS adoption. Retrieved March 18, 2014 from Rodrigue, Dr. Jean-Paul (2014). UPS: Logistics management of distribution networks. The Geography of Transport Systems. Retrieved March 18, 2014 from United Parcel Service. Technology support, Transportation management systems. Ups.Com Retrieved March 18, 2014 from http://www.ups.com/content/us/en/resources/techsupport/alliances/application_tms.html

Cite this essay

Transportation Management Systems. (2016, Mar 07). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/transportation-management-systems-essay

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