Finding software can be overwhelming. We've helped thousands of businesses choose the right transportation management software so they can optimize routes and track shipments.

Showing 1-20 of 134 products

Infoplus

Infoplus WMS is a web-based warehouse management software solution for small to midsize 3PLs, eCommerce Retailers, and Wholesalers focused on taking control of overall inventory, warehouse operations and shipping.  Key features include... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 28 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Omnna ERP

Omnna is a cloud-based ERP that allows businesses of all sizes to manage processes for the supply chain lifecycle, point of sale, warehousing, customer relationship management and more. Omnna's complete B2B and B2C warehouse management... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 15 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Rose Rocket

Rose Rocket’s transportation management software (TMS) platform helps companies improve communications with systems, customers and the people who move freight.  Its open platform makes it easy to connect to the software that runs... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 14 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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WISE

WISE by Royal 4 Systems is a rules-based warehouse management (WMS) system that is able to support a number of industries, including 3PL, automotive, food and beverage and industrial machinery. WISE helps users manage core warehouse... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 12 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Logistically

Logistically is a cloud-based transportation management solution (TMS) designed for 3PLs, brokers and shippers of all sizes. Features include billing and invoicing, load management, order management, shipment management, routing, scheduling... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 12 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Freightview

Freightview is a standalone transportation management system designed for small to midsize businesses that ship less-than-truckload (LTL) freight and work with multiple carriers or brokers. Their customers include manufacturers and... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 3 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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ShipHawk

ShipHawk is a cloud-based transportation management solution (TMS) for medium-to-high volume parcel and less-than-truckload freight shippers. The system supports parcels, less-than-truckload freight, first and final mile carriers and... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 3 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Trimble TMS

Trimble TMS (formerly known as TMW Systems) solutions help carrier companies—large, small, and mid-sized— to keep their costs and services competitive while delivering significant value every day. Trimble TMS helps businesses with... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

Platforms: Win
Deployments: Cloud
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FreightPOP

FreightPOP is a cloud-based solution that helps businesses manage the entire freight shipping lifecycle through invoicing, label printing and tracking of carriers in transit. Key features include warehouse management, shipment tracking,... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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HighJump Warehouse Advantage

HighJump Warehouse Advantage is an adaptable, process-based warehouse management system (WMS) designed to be tailored to companies’ unique business practices. Due to its modular design, users can pick and choose from a suite of applications... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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WarehouseExpert

Made4net is a comprehensive and robust warehouse management solution (WMS) which is built for companies across a variety of industries, including B2B, retail, CPG, food and beverage, manufacturing, third-party logistics and more. The... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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ShippersEdge

ShippersEdge is a cloud-based transportation management solution that manages shipping logistics. It helps users manage shipments, submit claims and handle multiple carriers. ShippersEdge helps companies save time and control costs.... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Form.com

Form.com is a field service solution that provides tools that aim to optimize the workflow involved in traditional field service operations. Based on a variety of responses, the system triggers events that are situationally appropriate,... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Oracle SCM Cloud

Oracle SCM Cloud is a cloud-based supply chain management solution that offers distribution, manufacturing, inventory management and fleet management within a suite. The product features product development, which allows users to... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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BluJay Solutions

BluJay Solutions’ Transportation Management offers cloud-based procurement, supply chain planning, execution and settlement transportation. Users also have access to BluJay’s Global Trade Network with various connected partners.... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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ViewPoint Logistics

ViewPoint Logistics is an on-premise third-party logistics (3PL) solution that helps businesses to manage various activities of the supply chain process such as storage, handling and distribution of materials. ViewPoint Logistics... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Transplace TMS

Transplace is a leading provider of logistics technology and services for shippers. We help manufacturers, retailers and distributors optimize their supply chain operations and increase their financial performance. The Transplace... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations

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Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Best Ship

Best Manifesting is a USPS Certified and Authorized Vendor of eVS and Mail.dat offering multi-carrier options with the user-friendly product Best Ship since 2006. Best Manifesting offers custom development and integration to all inventory... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: CloudOn premise
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Haven

Haven is a cloud-based transport management solution designed to helps traders and shippers of all size to manage their supply chain process. It helps traders to automate trade workflows, generate shipping documents in compliance to... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
Deployments: Cloud
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Silver Bullet Technologies

Silver Bullet is an on-premise logistics solution designed for 3PLs, inland terminals, shipping agencies, trucking companies and container freight stations. Features include inventory management, order management, customer management,... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 1 recommendations

Platforms: Win
Deployments: On premise
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Buyers guide


Last Updated: July 3, 2020

What Is Transportation Management Software?

Transportation management solutions (or TMS) is software designed to help businesses plan, execute, and measure deliveries across the supply chain. By providing managers with appropriate tools like carrier procurement optimization, load building, and track and trace, the right TMS system can improve fleet performance and reduce supply chain expenditures.

TMS typically sits between a business' accounting system and warehouse management system. Although, a TMS is a powerful tool to reduce costs and optimize shipping even as a standalone solution.

Benefits of Transportation Management Software

The general benefits are increased operational efficiency, reduced freight costs, and improved profitability. These benefits are created by different features and impact businesses in different ways.

For example:

  • Measuring performance of specific carriers, routes, and delivery times allows for adjustments to be made based on data, not anecdotes.
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  • Accurately tracking shipments and routes will reduce late delivery and improve communication of unexpected deviations.
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  • Managing payments in the TMS allows you to correlate vendors with trends in late payments, inaccurate invoices, etc., allowing you to better manage the relationship.

Business Sizes Using TMS Software

TMS systems are used by businesses in any industry where shipments and deliveries are at the core of operations. While nearly half of the buyers we advise each year are third-party logistics (3PL) companies, the other half is spread pretty evenly across food and beverage, automotive, electrical, and consumer packaged goods (and more).

In regard to business size, and independent from industry, you'll fall into one of the following categories:

  • Small business buyer. These are companies with two to 100 employees that make under $50 million a year and have no IT department. This size accounted for approximately half of the buyers we helped with their software purchase last year.
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  • Midsize business buyer. These are also companies that have two to 100 employees and make under $50 million a year, but they do have an IT department.
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  • Enterprise business buyer. These are large companies that have more than 100 employees, make more than $50 million a year, and have a dedicated IT department.

A List of Common TMS Features

Comparing carriers for the best rates, fewer number of stops, and shortest lead time possible is time consuming when handled manually. Tracking and measuring the performance of this decision is nearly impossible when relying on spreadsheets. Transportation management software offers a number of important tools to maximize efficiency and reduce costs to alleviate these pain points.

These features provide the following functionality:

Automated carrier selection A TMS improves the carrier procurement process by determining the smartest carrier and mode options for each delivery.  
Shipment consolidation Consolidating shipments is the single fastest way to cut shipping costs. A TMS will assess all scheduled shipments and arrange them in efficient bundles, maximizing their load consolidation with each delivery.  
Freight estimate optimization Whether you're submitting bids or simply calculating shipping costs, a TMS will calculate the cost of delivery based on cargo weight, mode of shipping, delivery distance, and other variables, and provide comprehensive reports and needs analyses to facilitate more cost-efficient choices.  
Payments These systems include accounting functionality that helps users reconcile invoices with shipments, audit freight bills, reduce payment errors, and establish tolerances for match-pay settlements.  
Dashboards Monitor shipping statuses and measure against established KPIs in real-time across the supply chain. Data is displayed in charts and graphs to quickly provide insight and visibility into the performance of a business' logistics network.  
ShippersEdge dashboard ShippersEdge TMS dashboard (Source)

TMS Buyers' Top-Requested Features

ShippersEdge dashboard

How Transportation Management Software is Priced and Hosted

Pricing: Transportation management systems are typically priced two ways: perpetual and subscription licensing.

Perpetual. The firm purchases a license to use the software in perpetuity, with the license price typically determined by the size of the organization or the number of vehicles in its fleet. Keep in mind that you often have to pay annual fees for support, maintenance, and upgrades—one general rule of thumb is you can expect those annual costs to amount to roughly 20 percent of the perpetual license fee.

Subscription. The firm purchases a subscription (typically billed monthly) that is based on the current size of the organization or the number of vehicles in its fleet. Typically, the organization will have to pay more for every additional truck it adds into the system. Fees for support, maintenance, and upgrades are generally wrapped into the subscription price, so the organization can usually determine what the total cost of ownership for the system will be during its lifecycle.

Integrated Suites Vs. Best-of-Breed

Often, TMS software is a stand-alone system or a key module in a best of breed supply chain management system.

The advantages to an integrated suite will be far better integration out-of-the-box (e.g., fuel expenses automatically sync with the organization's accounting modules), but what they have in breadth of features they might lack in depth, and for smaller organizations, they can be overkill. Individual best-of-breed applications may require more custom-built integrations, but they are typically more fully featured than their counterparts in integrated suites.

One thing to keep in mind is what your needs are. If you need to overhaul your entire system, then you would obviously want to look at a broad, integrated suite. If, however, you are only trying to improve one aspect of your operation or fill a functional gap, a best-of-breed application might be your best bet.

Hosting options: Transportation management systems are typically deployed two ways: cloud-based and hosted on-premise.

Cloud-based. With a cloud-based system, the software is hosted on the vendor or a third party's servers, and can be accessed through a web browser or via a mobile app if the vendor offers one. The recent trend has definitely been toward deploying cloud-based software, as it is often cheaper to deploy and easier to manage for small to midsize businesses.

On-premise. The organization hosts the software on its own computers and servers. The traditional method of software deployment, on-premise deployment has started falling out of fashion in the TMS realm due largely to the increased use of internet-connected hardware devices embedded in trucks or other commercial vehicles. That said, larger distribution firms, or firms with particular security needs, might find more value out of an on-premise system.

With Gartner's predictions in the TMS market, the recommendation is to “change your TMS product mix to SaaS-only to avoid declining revenue due to the projected reduction in spend on on-premise TMSs." (Full report available to Gartner clients only) Gartner forecasts SaaS TMSs to own more than 60 percent of the market by 2022.

What Businesses Typically Budget for TMS Software

Some software buyers who speak with our advisors share their planned budgets. Of these interactions in the past 12 months, we broke down the estimated monthly costs and initial setup costs for TMS software below.

transportation management software monthly budget
transportation management software setup costs

Hidden Costs of Transportation Management Software

If you are currently using manual methods to track shipments it's possible you will need to purchase hardware in order to take advantage of features such as barcode scanning.

What Are the Key Functions of TMS Software?

Read about the core features here.

What Questions Should I Ask Vendors When Evaluating TMS Products?

Can I see it in action?

Always ask the vendor for two demos. The first demo is typically performed by your sales agent and will walk you through the user interface and core features.

The second demo should include both your IT resource and the vendor's technical resource. Give the vendor a heads up that you will have your technical resource with you so they invite one too. This allows the IT resources to ask questions which will speed the process of implementation or inform the decision to go with another product.

Do you integrate with my accounting/warehouse inventory/order fulfillment software?

Their answer needs to include the specific name of your accounting software. While the vendor may be able to build an integration, you don't want to be the guinea pig for a new one.

How many active clients do you have a similar size and business type as mine? May I have a reference to call?

Each business has varying delivery and shipment management needs based on complexity and size. It is important to know the vendor is supporting at least one other client as similar to yours as possible.

Is anything I'm asking for “custom code"?

Ask for a list of each function included in the “out of the box" solution and the ones that are “add ons." Be on the lookout for features you may not need that are being added on. Also, ask how easy will it be to add features if you decide you need one in the future.

What is your customer support model?

Each vendor will offer different customer service models and service level agreements. Make sure their model matches your needs. Do you want a representative available 24/7? Online chat capability? Be sure to ask!

What are the set-up costs for the software?

Most vendors will price their software based on a SaaS subscription model, but there are frequently up-front costs that come with implementation.

How likely are we to require tech support in order to set up, implement, and/or use the software?

If you have a small or no IT department, it will be important to know whether or not you'll require (potentially costly) tech support in order to implement and maintain the software.

What Are Some Drawbacks I Should Watch Out For?

There is sometimes confusion between transportation management systems and fleet management systems. One quick way to identify which you're looking for is if you are wanting to use GPS and a route optimizing module to track your trucks—this is fleet management software, not a TMS. Read more here.

Transportation management software isn't a cure-all for businesses that have problems due to their own dysfunctional processes. For your TMS to work successfully, you need to make sure that the teams and individuals who will use the software are properly trained and receive ongoing training.

Market Trends to Understand

Internet of things. More TMS systems are starting to integrate or otherwise be paired with Internet of Things (IoT) hardware devices and are used to relay more than just simple GPS tracking. Food distributors, for example, often use internet-connected thermometers to ensure that food shipments are maintained at certain temperatures.

Global trade management. Some TMS platforms also feature modules for Global Trade Management, such as international tax and ISO compliance, international shipping schedules, and other tools to assist with transoceanic shipping.

Driverless technology. It will be interesting to see which TMS vendors make the greatest strides into developing integrations for autonomous vehicles. It is expected that commercial autonomous vehicles will be on the roads en masse as major players in the field such DHL prioritize the effort. So expect there to be much disruption in the realm of fleet and transportation management.

Software Related to TMS Market

TMS is one part in a series of software designed to optimize the supply chain. Complementary solutions include:

  • Warehouse inventory software provides managers with the tools they need to analyze stock and make plans for inventory movement or replenishment. Used alongside a TMS, WMS software serves as a critical part of an overall supply chain management system.
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  • Order fulfillment software is best for buyers looking to improve the management of their order-to-cash process. Many WMS and TMS software solutions contain order fulfillment functionality within their systems, but buyers without the need to automate warehousing or transportation tasks should evaluate order fulfillment applications.
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  • Inventory management software enables businesses with large volumes of physical products to keep track of those products through various stages along the supply chain. Features include product categorization, sales and purchase order tracking, electronic scanning, and automatic ordering.
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  • Fleet management solutions help users optimize delivery routes, dispatch deliveries, and reduce risk factors associated with fleet management.

Note: The applications selected in this article are examples to show a feature in context and are not intended as endorsements or recommendations. They have been obtained from sources believed to be reliable at the time of publication.