Topic Transport ORTEC

Full Truck Load (FTL)

What is a Full Truck Load?

A Full Truck Load (FTL) means enough products (which can be bulk/liquid) to fill a Full Truck Load, or a dedicated truck is preferred for a partial load due to safety or security considerations. The opposite of FTL is Less than Truck Load (LTL). LTL means that multiple orders are combined in a Truck Load, and is typically applied by third party logistics (3PL) operators, who combine shipments from multiple customers together in a load in a hub-and-spoke network.

Why optimize Truck Loads to Full Truck Loads?

Optimizing truckloads to Full Truck Loads (FTLs) improves the utilization of trucks and reduces transportation costs, the number of deliveries, the risk of damage and empty mileage (as a result of shipping less air in a trailer) and the impact on the environment through less CO2 emissions.

How to create and optimize to Full Truck Loads?

The first step can be to split up large volumes (e.g., from a supplier to a producer) into FTLs. Executing this step in an optimal way reduces transportation costs, number of deliveries, and risk of damage to products caused by extra space in a trailer. When FTLs are defined, the second step is to assign FTLs to resources, such that the empty mileage/time is minimized between two orders (from delivery location to the next loading location) and all requirements are respected. Minimizing empty mileage leads to reduction of costs through better truck utilization and an increase in the amount of orders delivered per resource.  

There are multiple decision steps involved with FTLs, i.e. to create them and to assign them to resources. We define three steps:
  1. If the customer orders are not specific, but there is an expected/forecasted demand, a current stock level, as well as a minimum and maximum stock level, an optimizer can compute the optimal delivery schedule for the coming period, taking these restrictions into account
  2. When transportation costs are leading, there is a focus on creating FTL orders. When the orders are placed by a customer, but typically consist of large volumes of multiple orders, then a good optimizer is necessary to minimize the number of FTL orders based on detailed product information like length, width and height, and stacking and loading requirements
  3. Optimize the assignment of an FTL to a certain truck or driver, such that the utilization of the driver is maximized and empty mileage between two FTL transports is minimized
What are the results of optimizing truckloads to Full Truck Loads?

Optimizing Truck Loads with FTLs results in reducing:

  • Transportation costs
  • Number of deliveries
  • Risk of damage (as a result of shipping less air in a trailer)
  • Empty mileage
  • Impact on the environment through less CO2 emissions
In addition, FTLs lead to better truck utilization which increases the amount of orders per resource.

Why contact ORTEC to optimize Truck Loads and Full Truck Loads?

ORTEC has advanced optimization solutions to support FTL transport in multiple ways: technology to create FTL-orders based on customer demand, by stacking and loading optimization. In particular relevant in  Vendor Managed Inventory concepts the frequency and delivery is optimized to focus on FTL. In transport optimization the assignment of FTL to truck/driver such that the utilization of the driver is maximized and empty mileage between two FTL transport is minimized.