Information Carriers Need
So you’re calling your carrier to schedule a pickup, this should be easy! You tell them where you’re calling from and they should just send you a truck, right? Not so fast… More often than not, dispatchers are working to schedule several hundred orders per day with their fleet of trucks, and they need to route them as efficiently as possible.
This requires information such as:
Pickup and delivery addresses including contact persons on site;
Description of the shipment: number of pieces, total weight, and dimensions;
How quickly you need the delivery completed, and if there are any time restrictions or appointment times; and
If there are any other special requirements such as a driver with certain certifications, or special equipment to load or unload the shipment.
In order to give them that information, the person taking your order needs to ask very specific questions, and it helps if you have that information available!
Order Entry Screen
Take a look at the screen below that the call taker may be looking at the get a better idea of why they ask the questions in the order that they do.
Although each carrier may use a different system, here are some questions that you can expect:
Who is paying for the delivery?
Your name? In case there are any further questions;
Where are we picking up from? Including contact names and numbers;
Where are we delivering to? Including contact names and numbers;
What are we taking? Number of pieces, weight, dimensions, etc.;
What service do you need? Confirming the time that it needs to be delivered by;
Do you have a vehicle preference? Some shipments require specific vehicles, but if it can go into any vehicle, it gives the Dispatcher more options to get the order done promptly;
Any Purchase Order (PO) number? Sometimes required for billing or picking up orders; and
Any other information? This is your chance to share any other time restrictions or delivery requirements you are aware of.
Make sure you get an Order Number or Tag Number from the call taker in case you need to change anything about your order or follow up on it!
Always remember, more information is better than not enough, and Happy Scheduling!