March 12, 2024


If you’re in logistics, you know that freight billing discrepancies happen regularly. The idea of doing an audit can be overwhelming – and yet, the amount of money saved, in many cases, is substantial. In this quick guide, you’ll learn how to conduct an audit, and more importantly, how to take the stress out of staying on top of your freight costs.

How to Conduct a Freight Audit

Step 1: Compare Invoices with Shipping Documentation 

Compare freight invoices with your shipping documentation (ie, bills of lading or delivery receipts) to verify the accuracy of rates, discounts if applicable, and any extra charges. Ensure that any accessorial charges (detention, fuel surcharge, handling fees, special services) are accurate and applicable. 

Step 2: Review tariffs 

Tariffs, the rates and charges applicable to the transportation of your goods, are how your primary freight rate is determined. Verify compliance by reviewing the relevant rates, rules, and regulations that you and your carrier have agreed upon. 

Step 3: Look for Duplicate Payments

Look for duplicate payments or entries – including cross-checking invoice numbers – to avoid double payments. Consider using technology platforms (more on this next) to easily automate this process for you.

Optimizing Your Audits 

As you can imagine, organization – and automation when it’s an option – is the key to minimizing the time and attention an audit can require. Having a single source of truth for all of your records is imperative to keeping your audits running smoothly. While spreadsheets are often part of the mix, they are prone to human error. With technology like Owlery’s TMS and logistics platform, you can completely automate the tracking and organization of your billing documentation in one place. You’ll have everything you need for data analysis, dispute resolution, and more.

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