Discussions about weight may be frowned upon in social spheres, but they’re central to shipping company operations. Reliable weight measurements from a truck scale are critical to multiple priorities within a Cleveland warehousing & distribution center, including:
- Ensuring precise billing
- Maintaining accurate inventory records.
- Meeting regulatory compliance – especially ground transport rules.
Accurate measurements of incoming and outgoing shipments and inventory on our 100,000-pound truck scale are key to providing our Northeast Ohio customers with warehouse and transportation services that are safe, efficient, and cost-effective.
Why Weight Matters in Warehousing & Distribution
Safety is the first reason weight matters in warehousing & distribution.
Every commercial vehicle on the road must meet certain regulatory weight restrictions, depending on its size/number of axels. In Ohio, the maximum gross weight of any commercial vehicle without a permit is 80,000 pounds. (The overweight permit limit is 120,000 pounds.) Regulators recognize that when large trucks exceed these limits, they’re tougher to handle, accelerate faster down inclines, require additional brake space, and are at higher risk of tire blow-outs, rollovers, or loss of steering control. That’s not a safe situation when you’re hauling tens of thousands of pounds in inventory. Strict adherence to regulatory weight limits protects drivers and spares shippers/carriers from potential fines, impoundment, suspensions, higher insurance premiums, and legal action.
Gauging truck weight correctly is also vital to time and cost efficiency. Overloaded trucks are also known to damage cargo. When we weigh outgoing shipments at our Cleveland warehousing & distribution center, we prevent overloading – and help clients reduce the risk of costly damage.
The 100,000-pound truck scale at the warehouse also helps with load verification and load optimization. Warehousing and distribution centers can use the truck scale to verify incoming shipments and match the documented weight information provided by the shipper. That helps ensure the correct quantities of goods are being received. It can also help reduce the turnaround time for shipments.
Warehouse crews can also use the truck scale to help with load planning – especially for shipments involving multiple items or pallets. The weight of a container or trailer needs to be evenly distributed to ensure stability and efficiency. Ultimately, this can help reduce the total number of trips required to move cargo, which can minimize fuel costs and environmental impacts – aligning with the supply chain sustainability goals many companies are now prioritizing.
Weight is also commonly used for billing. Customers are often charged on the basis of the actual weight of their shipments. Utilizing the on-site truck scale helps with accountability with fair and accurate billing. Along those same lines, weight data obtained from the truck scale is often referred to if there’s any type of auditing, compliance reporting, or resolving disputes related to shipment weights.
Quality control is another good reason for utilizing an on-site truck scale. When we have the accurate weight of inventory when it’s both coming and going, we can identify discrepancies in shipments that can arise from incorrect quantities or damaged goods.
On-Site Truck Scale’s Competitive Edge
Given that the need for accurate truck weight is so significant, having an on-site truck scale offers a distinct advantage for our Cleveland warehousing and distribution clients. This eliminates the need for manufacturers, shippers, and carriers to seek external weighing facilities – which saves them both time and resources.
Value-added services like this are one of the many reasons On Time Delivery & Warehouse has been a trusted logistics partner for more than four decades.
For information on utilizing our onsite truck scale, Contact On Time Delivery & Warehouse by calling (440) 826-4630 or send us an email.
Compilation of Existing State Truck Size and Weight Limit Laws, U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, Freight Management & Operations
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Upside of Cleveland Flatbed Trucking, Aug. 23, 2023, Cleveland Warehousing & Distribution Blog
Striving for a more sustainable supply chain has increasingly become a top priority for many companies. As a premier NE Ohio 3PL, we recognize more than most that none of us exists in a bubble. When we take care to craft systems of sourcing, producing, storing, and transporting goods that consider the environmental, social, and economic impact, we can:
- Reduce waste
- Conserve resources
- Promote ethical, socially-responsible conduct in every link in the supply chain
NE Ohio 3PL providers also know that sustainable supply chains just make good business sense. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates more than 90 percent of an organization’s greenhouse gas emissions and 50-70 percent of operating costs are attributable to supply chains. And in a recent Harvard Business Review Whiteboard Session, clear benefits to supply chain sustainability were identified as:
- Lower costs. Reducing your carbon footprint and reducing material waste in turn leads to improved time and resource efficiency.
- Reduced risk. When a firm is effectively managing the potential compliance and regulatory risks, they avoid fines and limit legal liabilities. Sustainable supply chains also tend to be more resilient to disruptions, whether caused by economic crises, natural disasters, global pandemics, or other unforeseen events.
- Reputation gains. Consumers are becoming more environmentally conscious and socially aware. They prefer to support companies committed to sustainability in supply chains. This ads brand value, and such companies tend to have greater success in retaining top talent.
How NE Ohio 3PL Can Help You Achieve a More Sustainable Supply Chain
Working with a third-party logistics (3PL) provider can help companies achieve more sustainable supply chains in several ways. Among these:
While dry vans and refrigerated trucks are probably the most common haulers in the U.S., thanks to the broad diversity of cargo they can carry, flatbed trucks are considered the “workhouses” of the transportation industry. As a longtime Cleveland flatbed trucking service provider, we are closely familiar with
For those who may be unfamiliar, flatbed trucks are, well, flat. There are no roofs, no walls, and the trailers are open to the elements. The trailer is typically a wood platform supported by a durable frame made of aluminum. Most are somewhere between 48′ to 53′ long, and weight capacity for a standard 5-axle usually goes up to 48,000 pounds. The
Some of the key benefits of using a flatbed:
- Versatility. Flatbed trucks have an open design without roofs or sides, which allow them to accommodate a range of cargo sizes and shapes – from heavy machinery and construction materials to oversized equipment and vehicles. Such loads aren’t likely to fit in enclosed trailers, but they can be safely hauled with Cleveland flatbed trucking. That makes them indispensable for industries like construction, agriculture, manufacturing, and energy.
- Ease of Loading and Unloading. Thanks to the open design of flatbed trucks, loading and unloading is a more simplified process. Our flatbed trucks can be loaded/unloaded with cranes and forklifts – and can even be rolled on. Free of the constraints of a closed space, the loading/unloading process is more time efficient – plus it cuts down on the need for extra equipment or product disassembly.
- Fewer Height Restrictions. In an enclosed trailer, the ceiling is the limit. With flatbeds, there is a lot more room to go up. That can make Cleveland flatbed trucking a suitable solution for transporting tall items or loads.
- Cost-Effectiveness. Although it’s true that flatbed trucking in Ohio isn’t the least expensive means of transport. In fact, it’s usually more expensive than dry vans and box trucks. Yet it often does carve out a cost savings for firms that use it. That’s because it allows companies to avoid disassembly of large materials or items just so they fit into a trailer. It can also cut down on the number of trips, compared to smaller vehicles unequipped to move larger quantities are bigger items.
- Specialized Types. On Time Delivery & Warehouse’s trucks at our Northeast Ohio facility have various specialized configurations – and this diversity means they can be adapted to specific cargo requirements, depending on the customer’s needs.
- Durability. Flatbed trucks are designed to safely withstand the demands that go along with transporting heavy, unwieldy cargo.
- Support of Key Industries. Many pivotal industries rely on Cleveland flatbed trucking – such as construction, manufacturing, aviation, agriculture, real estate, and development, distribution, automotive, and more. It can be used to transport HVAC parts, reinforced concrete, bricks, lumber, military machinery, mobile homes, cement, steel coils, scaffolding – even equipment like excavators, loaders, and dozers. Major development and progress is made possible and profitable, thanks to the work of flatbed trucks.
Cleveland Flatbed Trucking Requires Skilled, Safety-Minded Drivers
Flatbed drivers must take special care when loading, securing, tarping, and maneuvering to ensure each and every trip is not only on time, but safe.
Cleveland warehouse consolidation services can be a cost-saver and efficiency-booster for companies looking to streamline their supply chain operations and optimize their distribution processes. They can be particularly useful for companies with:
- Larger order volumes
- High concentration of suppliers and customers within a relatively small radius
- Carbon emissions reduction goals
- Products or goods that are too expensive to ship through regular post
If you’re considering adding Cleveland warehouse consolidation services to your inventory storage and distribution procedures, we can provide a detailed list of the options and advantages specific to your operation.
What Exactly is Cleveland Warehouse Consolidation?
Warehouse consolidation services is a third-party logistics (3PL) approach to warehousing that involves consolidation of products from multiple suppliers into a single warehouse or distribution center before goods are shipped to their final destination. By combining many small shipments into fewer larger shipments, a 3PL delivers value to retailers and other clients – because fewer trips translates to lower costs.
The best Cleveland warehouse consolidation providers rely on advanced technology to track and combine smaller orders, quickly identifying which can be lumped together for single trips to the same region – saving time, fuel, and additional labor costs. This is a less-than-truckload (LTL) strategy that 3PLs are uniquely positioned to facilitate.
Benefits of Warehouse Consolidation
Primary benefits of 3PL Cleveland warehouse consolidation services include:
- Effectively Managing Fluctuations in Demand. If you anticipate seasonal changes or inconsistent demand, the use of warehouse consolidation services can help holding cost inflation, maintain consistent levels of inventory from warehouse-to-warehouse, and curtail deadstock.
- Reducing Transportation Costs. When shipments from multiple suppliers are consolidated into fewer trips, it drives down transportation costs when economies of scale are in play.
- Improving Supply Chain Efficiency. Fewer shipments eliminates processes that are redundant. It also streamlines logistics and reduces handling – which ultimately leads to shorter lead times and smoother deliveries.
- Enhancing Order Fulfillment. When you have a single point of consolidation, the accuracy of your order fulfillment goes up. When products are sorted and packed efficiently by a Cleveland warehouse consolidation 3PL, there are fewer errors and higher customer satisfaction.
- Lowering Packaging Costs. Consolidated shipments allow us to optimize packing strategies, shedding excess packaging and keeping material costs in check. Bonus: It’s also environmentally friendly.
- Mitigating Transportation Risks. The fewer shipments you make, the fewer chances there are of shipping-related risks like damage, theft, or loss. It also means a reduced risk of accidents – not just for trucks, but all road users because of the fact that it reduces the overall number of vehicles on the road.
- Minimizing Carbon Footprint. Consolidation reduces the number of trips and distances traveled, which decreases your company’s carbon footprint. You can tout your firm’s commitment to maintaining a more environmentally responsible supply chain.
In summary, warehouse consolidation services have a lot to offer our customers in terms of cost savings and efficiency improvements. Many clients also find that in the long run, these services contribute to a notably more sustainable and resilient supply chain.
For information on Consolidation Warehousing, Inventory Management, Fulfillment, Distribution, and Trucking Services in Cleveland, Contact On Time Delivery & Warehouse by calling (440) 826-4630 or send us an email.
Time to act on sustainability, Aug. 14, 2023, By Amanda Loudin, Modern Materials Handling
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Is Cleveland Outdoor Warehouse Storage a Viable Option for You? July 28, 2023, Cleveland Warehousing Blog
If your company is exploring storage options in a tight warehousing market, you might have luck scouting Cleveland outdoor warehouse opportunities. It’s not going to work for every type of product, but there are definitely certain products that can be stored in the open air – while still remaining secure on the facility campus.
For those who may be new to the concept, outdoor warehousing is when products/goods are sold outside the warehouse walls, but still on the property and under its protection/care.
On Time Delivery & Warehouse offers up to 5 acres of dedicated Cleveland outdoor warehouse storage space. It’s ideal for large, weather-resistant products that require limited warehouse worker involvement. It can also be a smart solution for temporarily storing containers or trucks. Companies with seasonal inventory fluctuations, as well as those who need to store oversized/irregularly-shaped items (think construction materials, machinery parts, pipes, lumber, etc.) have a better chance of finding adequate storage space without spending a fortune when they opt for outdoor warehouse storage.
It’s an increasingly popular option in a supply chain landscape with record-low warehouse vacancies. As reported late last year by Marketplace, demand for outdoor storage (also known as industrial outdoor storage or open-air storage facilities) has grown substantially as indoor warehouse space availability has shrunk. Many are discovering outdoor warehousing has a number of other advantages.
Advantages of Cleveland Outdoor Warehouse Space
- Reduced expenses. Outdoor warehousing can be a very cost-effective alternative to indoor warehouse space. You aren’t paying for climate control systems, lighting, and other infrastructure. That makes it an ideal option for companies looking to lower their storage costs.
- Spatial flexibility. If your firm has fluctuating inventory levels or sometimes require additional space on a sudden/temporary basis, outdoor storage can be a good choice – especially when indoor warehouse space is limited and costs a premium. You’ll have more flexibility to scale up or down as your capacity needs shift.
- Ample space. You’re going to pay a premium for indoor storage – especially if you have bulkier items to store. With outdoor warehousing, space requirements aren’t so stringent.
- Security. Secure facilities are essential for proper storage. Shipping, logistics, and port operations need secure outdoor facilities when they’re preparing containers and other cargo for overseas trade (imports/exports). You want fencing, surveillance cameras, security guards, access control systems – all this helps protect goods from damage or theft. It may be especially important for importers seeking to obtain/maintain federal CTPAT Compliance for overseas shipments.
- Easier accessibility. Loading, unloading, and inventory management is a lot easier when goods are stored outdoors because vehicles and machinery can maneuver freely to the area.
- Greater multipurpose versatility. Cleveland outdoor warehouse space can sometimes be used for more than just storage. They can serve as loading/unloading staging areas, workspace for on-site operations, and even assembly for certain industries.
- Preferred for certain industries. Just as some industries use indoor warehousing because their goods aren’t suited to be kept outdoors, other industries have goods that are better kept outdoors. These can include construction materials, agricultural goods, vehicles, or certain hazardous materials. The open-air and open layout are preferred for these products.
- Reduced environmental impact. While all warehouses have some impact on the environment, outdoor warehousing tends to have less because it doesn’t require much construction, and there are no heating, cooling, or constant maintenance expenses. (Plus if the logistics industry at some point slows considerably, those open-air storage spaces are easier to repurpose.)
At On Time Delivery & Warehouse, we recognize that warehousing is no longer just “storage.” Our customers benefit from our multi-functional site prepared to serve many purposes and provide an array of options to meet every client’s unique needs warehousing & distribution needs.
For information on Warehousing, Inventory Management, Fulfillment, Distribution, and Trucking Services in Cleveland, Contact On Time Delivery & Warehouse by calling (440) 826-4630 or send us an email.
With warehouses full, retailers look to store goods outside, Nov. 16, 2022, By Justin Ho, Marketplace
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Cleveland Public Warehousing Offers Flexibility, Scalability, and Profitability, June 30, 2023, Cleveland Outdoor Warehouse Blog
Companies seeking sustainability and more predictable rhythms in operation often turn to Cleveland dedicated trucking, a system of transport that ensures a truck is always there when you need one.
What is Dedicated Trucking?
Dedicated trucking, also known as dedicated freight or dedicated transportation, refers to a business arrangement where a company utilizes a fleet of trucks exclusively for its transportation needs. With these agreements, trucks are dedicated solely to serving the transportation needs of that particular business or entity.
This type of service is typically contracted through a third-party logistics (3PL) provider (such as On Time Delivery & Warehouse) or established through an in-house logistics department.
Any industry that relies on efficient and reliable transportation of goods can benefit from dedicated trucking. Some examples include:
- Manufacturing and distribution
- Retail and e-commerce
- Food and beverage
- Construction & heavy equipment
- Healthcare & pharmaceutical
- Hazardous materials
It allows businesses to streamline their supply chains, optimize delivery schedules, reduce costs, and ensure customer satisfaction. Shippers can work toward eliminating unreliability, which gives carriers time to eradicate those empty miles – not just for a single load, but on an ongoing basis. In some cases, shippers are reducing transportation costs, while improving customer service.
Upside of Dedicated Trucking
- Exclusive Use. With Cleveland dedicated trucking, rigs are reserved solely for the company that hires them. You won’t have to share with other businesses or general freight transportation. The benefit here is there’s always a truck available to serve the specific needs of your company, affording greater control & flexibility over transportation operations.
- Long-Term Commitments. Dedicated trucking services are in it for the long-haul. Partners in these arrangements typically sign long-term contracts between the company and transport provider. These can span weeks, but more often are months at minimum. Annual contracts are the most common. This helps ensure consistent, reliable services for your firm’s transportation needs.
- Customized Operations. Another upside to this type of trucking service is that it can be tailored to the precise needs of your company. The transport provider is working hand-in-hand with your operations manager to gain a full grasp on your delivery schedules, handling requirements, and route preferences. From there, your trucking services can be customized in a way that optimizes efficiency and meets your firm’s logistical demands.
- Predictable Capacity. When you choose Cleveland dedicated trucking, you have a dedicated truck (or more likely, fleet of trucks) – at your disposal, readily available, whenever you need. You have guaranteed, fixed access to a certain capacity for transport, which means you’re able to accurately and effectively plan transportation. Your team won’t have to worry as much about the availability or capacity of trucks that many other firms relying on LTL (less-than-truckload) must consider.
- Heightened Control & Visibility. Companies that rely on dedicated truckers tend to have better transparency within their transportation operations. When trucks are dedicated solely to serving your needs, you can more closely monitor and manage the movement of goods, track delivery times, and ensure adherence to your service level agreements and customer expectations. This is particularly important for companies bound by strict delivery requirements, tight time limits, or transport of sensitive/high-value goods.
- Improved Cost Efficiency. There’s no way around the fact that dedicated trucking services will cost more upfront. The benefit lies in long-term savings. Dedicated fleets allow shippers to identify optimal routes, eliminate empty miles, and offer their customers consistency. Plus: You aren’t paying for the investment and maintenance of your own in-house trucking fleet.
Most drivers entrusted to dedicated routes have at least one year of experience, if not more, plus a clean driving record. These jobs tend to be competitive because they offer drivers greater stability and more time at home. All this increases driver retention – which offers you additional peace of mind that your goods are in good hands.
Outlook: Shorter hauls, specialized services coming, Jan. 12, 2022, Journal of Commerce
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Faster Last Mile Delivery Logistics Should Be One of Your First Priorities, June 21, 2023, Northeast Ohio Dedicated Trucking Blog
Most businesses have periods of uncertainty. But if your operation regularly deals with swings in demand, product overflow, or changing space requirements due to promotions/new products, you may likely benefit from Cleveland public warehousing.
This type of warehousing arrangement is one in which third-party logistics (3PL) providers offer storage service fees to companies that need warehouse space, but don’t have their own private warehouse facility or they need additional capacity. Contracts can be long-term or short-term, allowing businesses to pay only for the space they need, when they need it. This helps reduce inventory waste, and saves money on labor costs.
When your warehousing company is also a 3PL, you also get the benefit of a variety of logistics and value-added services, such as:
According to IBISWorld, an industry research firm, the annual revenue of the public storage and warehouse industry in 2022 was approximately $35 billion – a figure that’s grown nearly 3 percent annually over the last five years. Public warehousing is overall outpacing the private warehousing sector (and in fact, the economy at-large). Increases in e-commerce – particularly in the retail sector – continue to fuel the growth of Cleveland public warehousing.
This isn’t surprising on our end, as we’ve noted similar trends here at our Northeast Ohio facility.
The public warehousing arrangement tends to work best for companies with:
- Need short and flexible contract terms.
- Are brand new to their industry or the area, and need a bit of time to determine how much space/which services they actually need.
- Experience notable fluctuations in inventory due to varying levels of demand.
- Product overflow at their existing warehouse/distribution center.
- Seasonal distribution variations.
- Supply chains that require a distribution center local to the region the public warehouse is located.
Key Business Benefits of Cleveland Public Warehousing
Many companies consider last mile deliveries to be the end-of-the-line for transactions. And that’s true. But last mile delivery logistics cannot be last on your list of priorities because it’s arguably the most important because it’s when contact is made with the customer. All the moving parts needed to get the package to that point don’t mean as much to the customer as the experience with last mile delivery.
The challenge for businesses is that same-day and next-day deliveries are no longer perks – but expectations.
Last Mile Delivery – Defined
Last mile delivery – also known as last-mile logistics – is the last leg of the journey. It’s basically the transport of goods from a distribution hub (such as a warehouse) to its destination of final delivery, usually someone’s home or business.
The goal is to facilitate these end user deliveries as fast as possible, while still providing exceptional service. Accomplishing this is one of the most expensive and time-consuming elements of the shipping process when you factor in labor costs, fleet costs, route optimization, and warehousing.
Fast-Tracking Last Mile Deliveries
As our Cleveland last mile delivery services professionals can explain, deliveries have been getting substantially faster in recent years. A recent report on the “State of Last Mile” revealed that the average timespan between someone placing an order and final delivery of that order went from 5.6 days in April 2022 to 4 days in April 2023.
Some shipping and logistics experts say at this point, companies need to be aiming for a 4-6 day average for end-to-end fulfillment if they hope to stay competitive.
But is it possible to speed it up even further? Industry insiders are skeptical, particularly because some of the factors that drove delivery times to excel so rapidly in the first place are waning.
The pandemic had a lot to do with why we saw such sharp acceleration of shipment and delivery times. In 2020, e-commerce sales shot up by 43 percent. Realistically, the consumer trend was heading that direction anyway.
The unique conditions stemming from the Covid-19 pandemic propelled shipping and logistics companies to invest in a number of measures to expedite deliveries at a time when fulfillment speed was crawling and demand was high.
Now that things have sort of evened out again, shippers still have:
- Broader capacity, with fewer constraints that challenged service in the early days of the pandemic.
- A diversified carrier mix, allowing them to seize on delivery providers that have a variety of advantages in various lanes.
- More warehouse space to keep inventory closer to final delivery destinations.
All this has meant consumers continue to expect ever-faster deliveries. In turn, businesses have had to prioritize quicker turnaround times for fulfillment to stay competitive. And that remains true. However, it’s unlikely we’re going to see this same degree of acceleration continuing as we have over the last few years.
Savvy business operators are consistently looking for ways to streamline supply chains, get greater value for their products/services, and maximize customer satisfaction. Many have discovered they can reap these rewards when they take advantage of our Cleveland warehouse value added services.
You’ve probably seen the term “value added service” tossed around while only having a vague notion of what it is or how it relates to warehousing and distribution. In short, value added services are those that bring additional value to the end user.
These can be tailored to the specific customer’s needs, and go above and beyond the basic storage and distribution functions typically expected of a warehousing partner. This is key because every customer’s goods and operational model are unique. Warehouses that offer a broad range of value added service options are best equipped to configure the optimal combination of add-ons that are going to reduce supply chain hiccups and related costs.
Examples of Popular Warehouse Value Added Services
Some examples of value added services commonly sought by our Northeast Ohio warehouse customers:
Freight fraud has become a real problem – here in the Midwest and beyond. One of the best ways to combat cargo scams and freight fraud is by working with a trusted Cleveland 3PL provider – one with a strong reputation and real-time supply chain transparency.
Cargo theft, identity theft, and unauthorized re-brokering (or double brokering) are all on the rise.
A recent survey reported by Transport Topics revealed a 20 percent increase in U.S. cargo thefts last year, amounting to fourth quarter losses in excess of $220 million. There was also a 400 percent increase in double-brokering complaints the second half of the year compared to the first.
What is Freight Fraud?
In most cases, freight fraud involves scammers tapping into load board technology, posing as legit carriers, and gaining access to loads with little suspicion until it’s too late.
Typically, freight brokers are responsible for facilitating shipments by matching freight loads that need to be picked up/delivered with truckers who are available to do the job. A double broker is someone who uses a phony identity to post an online bid for those loads. The shipper (who owns the freight) will pay that company. The scammer then re-posts the load in that or another online forum. A legitimate trucker or broker sees it and agrees to handle the shipping. By the time the original shipper and legitimate trucker/broker release what’s happened, the funds have already been diverted to the double-broker – who’s long-gone.
Among the greatest targets/weakest links according to DAT analytics:
- Major ports.
- Highway rest stops.
- Long distance deliveries.
- Weekend deliveries.
- Electronics, beverages/food, apparel, and pharmaceuticals.
Nearly 8 in 10 brokers surveyed had lost at least some time last year working to resolve fraud-related issues. More than 6 in 10 had a direct dip in productivity as a result, and nearly a quarter had to cope with some type of legal fall-out.
Is This a New Issue?
However, the reason it’s grabbing headlines lately is because it’s snowballed over the last couple of years as the task of matching loads to trucks has migrated online – leading to steep competition for shipments and (unfortunately) less-than-thorough background checks on the companies doing business on these platforms.
These trucking network middlemen impersonators have gotten more tech savvy than ever, and it’s a serious issue that chips away at time, resources, money, and customer satisfaction.
Although double brokering violates federal law, enforcement tends to be less than robust.