Importance of an Inbound Freight Routing Guide

Definition of Freight Routing Guide

routing guide policies and proceduresAn inbound freight routing guide outlines the rules of engagement between a company and its vendors.

The purpose of the routing guide is to help facilitate a quick inbound receipt that minimizes cost, confusion and time when a vendor’s shipment is delivered to a shipper’s inbound receiving dock.

The key components of a vendor compliance routing guide include:

  • Freight routing based on size of shipment and origin location.
  • Labeling instructions.
  • Carton size requirements.
  • BOL requirements.
  • Packing slip requirements.
  • ASN (Advanced Shipping Notice) requirements.
  • Pallet size and type requirements.
  • Single carton configuration and full pallet configurations.
  • Packaging requirements.
  • If there is a system to be used to log the shipment to be sent inbound, a written tutorial with pictures should be included to illustrate to vendors of how to properly enter and manage their data.
  • Communicate penalties for non-compliance.
    • Penalties should not to be punitive in nature but established to reimburse your company for the additional labor or freight charges the company will incur for non-compliance.
  • Capture Data for Reporting & Analytics
    • The key to capturing the data is to learn where the wins and losses are occurring within the inbound process to drive continuous improvements for both the company and its vendor partners.


For more on routing guides:

  • Implementing Inbound Freight Management Program
  • Freight Costs: An Insider’s Look on Freight Pricing Buyers Should Know
  • Best Practices for Implementing an Inbound Freight Program Successfully
  • Benefits of Managed Transportation Services: Comprehensive Guide
  • How Much Does Managed Transportation Services Cost? A Comprehensive Pricing Guide
  • 2019 Best Managed Transportation Companies (And How to Choose)

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