In Dispatch Training? Here’s How Hub & Spoke and Point to Point Dispatching Compare

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In truck dispatching, two of the most common systems used are called “point to point” and “hub & spoke” (H&S). Point to point involves a driver collecting cargo at the point of origin, and then driving that cargo to the destination. Hub and spoke involves multiple steps. First, cargo is collected from a point of origin. Next, it is delivered to a central hub. Then, the cargo is collected (likely by a new truck or other shipping vehicle) and sent to the destination. For longer voyages, it’s not unusual for cargo to be sent to multiple hubs before its journey is complete.

Both of these systems have pros and cons. Here’s what future dispatching pros should know.

Pros With Dispatch Training Know Point to Point Is Quick And Secure

The biggest advantage of point to point shipping is that it is direct, and sending an individual load of cargo from one place straight to another is relatively fast. Compare that with sending cargo to a hub, unloading it, reloading it onto a new truck, and then sending it along once more, which could potentially take days.

In addition, because a shipment would remain on a single vehicle through the whole journey, risk of cargo being misplaced is relatively low. Compare this with the multiple loadings and unloadings involved in H&S, which make it easier for a package to be left behind, or misdirected to a different and incorrect location. If, in your career after dispatch training, you ever find yourself needing to get a shipment somewhere quickly and securely, a point to point method will likely be the best choice.

Hub & Spoke Shipping Is Faster Overall, and Costs Less Money

With point to point, many routes are necessary to deliver goods between multiple points. If some are far away, it could mean shipping resources are tied up on a single delivery for a lengthy amount of time.

Hub and spoke improves on this dramatically. Multiple points of origin (spokes) can send cargo to a single hub, which in turn can send that cargo along to a common destination. The shorter route from the origin to the hub allows for multiple trips to be made in the amount of time a single point to point drive would have taken. Ultimately, this allows for more revenue to be generated on a similar amount of expended effort.

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Hub & spoke shipping makes more effective use of resources

Because of the efficiency benefits, most graduates of dispatcher schools end up working with hub & spoke in their careers. You will likely find it makes shipping and scheduling quite easy, and that it allows you to use your resources effectively.

After Dispatch Training, You May Find Point to Point Is More Resistant to Delays

Though hub & spoke shipping is more efficient most of the time, there are occasions when the connected nature of the system can be a problem. A delay in the departure or arrival of one shipment can cause a chain reaction that spreads the problem to many different shipments in a system.

By contrast, because the point to point system keeps different shipments isolated, any individual shipment is more or less immune to problems with the others. This means that for important shipments that cannot be delayed, you might find it makes more sense to go with a point to point method of delivering goods.

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Point to point shipping is less affected by problems in a trucking network

Point to point and hub & spoke shipping both have their strong points, and are suitable for different purposes. The financial benefits offered by hub & spoke, though, mean it’s likely that you will use it extensively in your career.

Do you want to study in truck dispatcher courses in BC?

Visit Automotive Training Centres for more information about our program!

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