Blount International, Inc. is a global manufacturer and marketer of replacement parts, equipment, and accessories for the forestry, lawn and garden, farm, ranch and agriculture and concrete cutting and finishing markets.
Blount sells products in more than 115 countries and operates regional manufacturing and distribution centers around the world. Due to regional variations in financial and legal requirements, site processing methods and general market differences, Blount lacked a consolidated view into its global logistics spend and what they were able to bring together was inconsistent, questionable data. This uncertainty in its data hindered the company from effectively making significant progress in its logistics or supply chain goals. Blount also struggled with obtaining the information it needed to both standardize and measure compliance to its financial controls requirements globally, further hampering its efforts to create efficiencies around the logistics settlement process. Making their data visible companywide in a consistent format was an urgent priority.
Blount required a strategic partner with global capabilities and a presence in the markets it serves. It enlisted Trax Technologies to help improve operational efficiency and provide essential understanding to Blount’s spend.
Through Logistics Performance Management (LPM) – a discipline dedicated to measuring and improving supply chain results — Trax helped Blount drive efficiency gains, minimize risk and deliver savings. By focusing on data refinement and automation, as well as Governance Risk and Compliance (GRC) controls, Trax identified and stopped revenue and expense leaks for Blount and its LSP partners. Trax also automated the process that classifies logistics costs to the correct budget within Blount and provided immediate, reliable visibility into the company’s logistics spend.
Relative to analytics, Blount realized that it needed to augment its internal capabilities in order to be able to produce the outputs necessary to better align logistics to the overall supply chain strategic plan. Trax provided the tools, data, and analysis Blount needed to gain essential insights. Furthermore, Trax was able to enhance the value and utility of Blount’s investments in its ERP and other technologies by providing refined underlying data that made these systems smarter and more effective. This ultimately improved Blount’s supply chain margins.
The engagement is not about paying freight, it’s about data accuracy and enrichment, and the endless possibilities of what we can do with that data.
Both Blount and its logistics service partners benefit from having better clarity into their shipments. With trusted information on both sides, all parties are able to negotiate more accurate contracts based on specific services used. As a recent example, Blount was able to maintain service expectations and decrease costs by approximately $1.6M with a major parcel service provider alone. In another scenario, Trax’s ability to support granular billing codes and break up charge categories with a major global third-party logistics service provider led to a major shift in performance and value to both Blount and its partner.
Initiatives such as these have actually created opportunities for both Blount and the LSPs to become more efficient and enhance their partnerships. Better data and analytics allow partners to provide more strategic services and value-add, ultimately solidifying relationships for the long term.
“Blount set out to design and implement a single global freight audit and payment solution with Trax,” explained Alfredo Camacho, Director of Global Transportation and Trade Compliance for Blount. “Now, the engagement is not about paying freight, it’s about data accuracy and enrichment, and the endless possibilities of what we can do with that data.”
Blount is on a journey to derive value from its supply chain and improve the company’s bottom line. This longterm vision includes driving clarity in landed cost, cost-to-serve at a SKU level, margin improvement, holistic supply chain visibility and centralized data integration. Trax is accelerating Blount’s ability to make this vision a reality by utilizing Logistics Performance Management solutions to improve efficiencies and automation, apply proper GRC controls and identify on-going strategic opportunities that assure bottom line benefit.