Freight Tenders: 5 crucial tips to ensure carrier engagement

Freight tenders are not only dependent on solid freight data (historical data). The willingness of carriers to participate in freight RFQ’s is a big factor as well. In this article, we share 5 vital tips to increase carrier participation in your freight tenders.

The constant tug of war game of supply and demand is a driving factor when tendering freight. The truck driver shortage, capacity changes on important container lines, economic fluctuations are just a few decisive factors lately, often putting the carriers in the driver’s seat.

5 crucial tips to ensure carrier engagement in freight tenders

But despite these external (constantly changing) factors, a shipper continues to have a grip on the participation level while sourcing freight. In this article, we share 5 easy, hands-on tips to improve the willingness of carriers and logistics service providers to take part in your logistics tender.

1. Make it easier for your carriers and freight forwarders 

You have several RFQs to attend to and yet another one lands on your desk. How likely are you to dive into the new one right away? Not very likely, right?

Put yourself in the shoes of a supplier. Carriers and logistics service providers receive invitations to freight RFQ’s on a daily basis. They all come in different formats. Do you think it’s very likely that carriers are eager to jump right into the incoming tenders, while there are still so many left on the shelf?

freightender logistics tender and procurement software

Freightender – tender overview shipper

2. Create open info channels

The shipper must take the lead in order to grab the attention of the suppliers immediately. In other words, data is queen but communication is king! Make sure there is plenty of room for communication. Use modern freight tender software to enable the carrier to chat online, or to comment directly on lanes and projects. 

3. ”Forcing” them to internalize the information of the RFQ

Also, from a supplier point of view, having the possibility to gain info and ask questions right away will increase interest and engagement early in the process and facilitate an early start to the bidding process.

Global forwarders are full on investing in digitisation of their manual processes. Freightender offers an innovative RFQ response and management solution to forwarders. Where do we expect forwarders to be with that in 2 years? A bold statement but changes are happening rapidly: we expect that 80% of the top 50 global forwarders will have their manual freight tender responses running over a specialised platform, like Freightender.

Freightender Logistics Procurement Shipper overiew Carrier Participation

Freightender – Carrier Participation overview shipper

4. Look past the horizon and carefully select backup carriers

Due to the changing factors earlier stated in the intro, carriers are empowering themselves to choose shippers deliberately during the freight tender. Making the process costlier and less certain for shippers who budget according to contract bids. For that reason, it’s essential to select backup carriers alongside your primary carriers during the RFP bidding.

During the RFP phase, make sure to clearly articulate the amount of freight the backup carrier is expected to receive to show that they are not just another carrier in your waterfall.

5. Modern technology for tenders matter

Making the business case for using any tool is even easier. If you are a midsize company or large corporate and still tenders are only being done via homegrown excel files and macro’s, then obviously you are far from best practice. Freight procurement can be standardized to a high degree while putting the shipper in control of rate cards and delivering enormous time savings and automating scenario building.

Thank you for reading Freight Tenders: 5 crucial tips to ensure carrier engagement. For daily tips and insights in freight procurement, please follow me on LinkedIn

Extra Insight – Forwarders spent a lot of time to make sure they quote accurately to freight RFQ’s they receive from shippers. Especially for global AIR & OCEAN tenders a lot of people globally are involved and time is often short. That is where the Internal Tender Management solution by Freightender helps forwarders. We created 1 platform where forwarders can efficiently manage the quotation process to ensure a quick turnaround and a better quotation process.

Pieter Kinds

Pieter Kinds


Freightender is the standard in freight tendering. It makes the tender process lean, smarter and much faster. 
Fully cloud-based. Curious? Request a free live demo and join the Freight Tender Revolution!

Schedule Demo Freight Sourcing

Schedule Demo RFQ Management

Freightender at the Transport & Logistic 2023 in Munich

Freightender, a leading provider of digital freight procurement solutions, is excited to announce its participation in the upcoming Transport & Logistic 2023 exhibition to be held in Munich, Germany. The event, one of the largest trade fairs for logistics and...

Unlock the Secrets of Successful Transport Procurement

When it comes to transportation, it is important for companies to secure the most cost-effective and efficient solutions. One of the most important steps to achieve this is through transport procurement. Transport procurement is the process of sourcing the most...

A holistic approach to logistics procurement, what is that?

Logistics (procurement) has changed in the last couple of years as we all know. The volatility in capacity and pricing is also affecting how companies buy freight. Prices are no longer being kept stable without any change for a year or even two years. This has...

European road transport rates reach record levels

Rates in European road transport are breaking records. This according to the  Road Freight Rate Benchmark study, conducted by industry association IRU, research firm Transport Intelligence (TI) and transport platform Upply for the second quarter of this year....

Ocean freight RFQ: 3 experts tips for professionals in 2022

How can you run a successful freight RFQ? In this ultimate ocean freight procurement guide, we share 3 key topics to get in order before sending your tender: good communication, solid logistics data and dedicated and modern technology (freight procurement platforms)....

Freight Auditing: a critical component of the solution, not just a marketing gimmick.

Auditing invoices in logistics is not sexy, but it offers a key to many challenges. In this article, I dive into this somewhat obscure niche. What is freight auditing? So what is freight auditing? It's simply the conceptual term for various processes performed to...

NVOCC pricing vs Freight Forwarder pricing

Is the distinction between NVOCCs and freight forwarders significant? This is a common question, therefore we decided to investigate it further in the following post. Read on to learn everything there is to know about NVOCCs, including their responsibilities,...

Road freight tenders: postpone due capacity crisis in logistics?

People in shipper organizations wonder if they need to postpone road tenders as there is talk about capacity issues everywhere and apparently carriers don't respond to tenders. The worry is right as the logistics world has changed but of course, you should tender if...

Pricing management in Logistics: Lever with the highest impact on profit

The relevance of profitable freight and logistics pricing strategies is highlighted by the combined effects of increasing industry competitiveness and rising transportation costs. By now the logistics industry is in turmoil for well over a year with no relief in sight...

Tender Management: Why the future is digital

Customers want to acquire freight or negotiate freight rates, so they send out a tender or RFQ to a group of forwarders or carriers who wish to participate in the process. This is straightforward and transparent. The process behind it is less visible and can be found...