Mining’s freight wunderkind

freight

Freightlancer offers a safe and reliable resource for finding transport solutions.

Instilling transparency, reliability and simplicity into the transport and logistics industry, Freightlancer takes the stress out of organising freight contracts and partnerships.

The Australian mining industry, like so many other sectors, has been navigating supply chain disruptions for more than two years as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, recent extreme weather events have highlighted further hindrances to the sector. Major flood events in SA, QLD and NSW not only halted operations at some mines, they also restricted ground transport, with freight particularly affected.

The SA Government declared a major emergency in late January following flooding and storm damage to critical road and rail routes between Adelaide, Perth and Darwin.

The Stuart Highway was flooded, meaning key mining areas such as Coober Pedy and OZ Minerals’ Prominent Hill mine were cut off by road.

A fractured supply chain means companies have had think outside the box to get stock from A to B, often stepping outside their comfort zone to consider alternative transport providers.

A combination of a marketplace and management system, Freightlancer offers a safe and reliable resource for transport solutions, especially in the mining industry.

Transport is about trust, and companies using Freightlancer know the providers with whom they’re dealing. Transparency on trip history goes along with the fact shippers can provide reviews of transport providers with which they’re connected.

“In the past, people have dealt with a range of different providers with urgent freight or pick-ups and there’s never really been accountability,” Drew Davis, Freightlancer’s general manager – sales and business development, told Australian Mining.

“When things go wrong, a company might do a load for one carrier and it doesn’t go well and then use a different carrier the next time, but no one else in the industry knows things haven’t worked out or things haven’t been done safely.

“The idea for our platform, with every carrier that’s on our system, is we provide a safe and reliable escrow payment system. So there’s no standoff between shippers and carriers when money’s released.

“We’re streamlining that process so when people are booking freight they know who’s coming to collect their goods.”

Freight is critical to the productivity and efficiency of the mining supply chain.

 

Freightlancer has become increasingly important in the current climate, which comes as the demand for alternative transport has swelled.

“The current environment has created a number of unique challenges,” Davis said.

“There’s more freight moving, there’s carrier shortages. As a result, there’s more businesses looking for alternatives to existing logistics processes and existing carriers.

“In doing that, businesses might have long-standing relationships … to go outside those relationships, it’s hard to know where to start.

“That’s where a system like ours helps; you know what’s competitive because it’s a marketplace. You know there’s safety, reliability and accountability.

“Also, a lot of companies are moving freight to places they wouldn’t have in the past. And, once again, they’re forced to look for alternatives to their existing carriers. We’ve seen a significant increase in requests for new contracts, new partnerships, and new methods and ways to move freight.”

Whether it’s the delivery of heavy equipment, chemicals or other materials, freight is critical to the productivity and efficiency of the mining supply chain.

Many mining companies are large corporations with extended procurement processes. Any way to expedite approvals can save time and money.

“There’s businesses that use Freightlancer for the one-off movements, but the more they use us they realise not only pricing but a lot of time-saving in that management process,” Davis said.

“For example, rather than going out and getting three quotes that are mandatory for most mining companies, it’s all done and it’s all automated and it cuts down on the time to organise a movement.”

Freightlancer can expedite a mining company’s freight procurement process.

 

It’s one thing to organise a move, but it’s another to refine it. And given mining freight can consist of many different components, configurations can be difficult to unify. Freightlancer thrives in streamlining logistics.

“Sometimes there’s not one carrier for a mining project that can move heavy equipment, as well as smaller goods, as well as organised cranes,” Davis said. “So we have a team of experienced logistics coordinators to help with those projects.

“Mining procurement managers don’t have to be involved in the whole process; they can come to Freightlancer and get that holistic service.”

In a world that’s more turbulent and unpredictable than ever, simplicity could be the most important business consideration of all.

Freightlancer repairs inconsistencies and removes the stress that often comes from the transport and logistics industry. Seems like a logical choice. 

This feature appeared in the May issue of Australian Mining.

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