uShip is changing the way that excessive cancellations affect Transportation Service Providers (TSPs). Though some cancellations are expected and inevitable in the transportation industry, others occur because of inadequate communication, excessive or improper bidding by TSPs, or attempts to fraudulently circumvent uShip fees. TSPs who consistently cancel their matches at a very high rate not only generate a bad user experience for uShip’s customers but also take legitimate business away from the vast majority of uShip’s TSPs who are able to honestly and effectively run their business and keep their cancellations within accepted industry norms.
Beginning April 16, 2009, uShip will make two significant changes to our cancellation policy: 1) A new surcharge to match fees applicable only for TSPs that have Excessive Cancellations and 2) Elimination of the current % positive feedback score penalty for Excessive Cancellations.
- Excessive Cancellation Surcharge on Match Fees: Starting on April 16, 2009, TSPs who have excessive cancellations at the time they accept a bid will have a variable surcharge added to their match fee, in proportion to their current ratio of cancellations to matches. These changes will not retroactively apply to bids placed before April 16, 2009, regardless of the time their bid is accepted.
For example, when a TSP who has 93 matches and 15 cancellations places a bid, their cancellation rate is calculated at 15% (Matched shipments are always rounded up to the nearest 10, or 100 total in this example). Thus, this TSP would have a 20% surcharge added to their match fee amount (i.e., if their match fee was previously $50 it will now be $60 because of the 20% surcharge). Note: Cancellations from ‘Book it Now’ and ‘Ship it Now’ matches will still not be counted in these calculations.
TSPs who keep their cancellation rate within industry norms will not be affected by this surcharge. Thus, our goal is that this policy change will indirectly reward the many TSPs who have a proven track record of honoring their bids and completing their transactions through the uShip site by allowing them to offer more competitive rates and win more jobs compared to TSPs who do not.
- % Positive Feedback Score Change: We have heard feedback from the community that the current policy of counting an excessive cancellation as 1/2 of a negative in the % positive feedback calculation has been mostly ineffective at preventing cancellation abuse and has been overly confusing to consumers. Thus, we will be changing our policy so that excessive cancellations will no longer affect a TSP’s % positive feedback score. This change will be retroactive and all service providers affected by this policy in the past will see immediate increases in their % positive feedback score on April 16, 2009.
Tips for Reducing Cancellations:
- TSPs should read and understand all the details on a shipment listing, including service needed, dimensions, prior Q&A and pickup and delivery timeframes before bidding.
- If something is unclear or not in the listing, TSPs should ask the customer a question before bidding.
- TSPs should only bid on multiple items if they have space in their vehicle to service them all, should they be accepted. If a TSP qualifies for Group Bidding, we strongly encourage the use of this powerful advanced bidding tool that lets providers bid on multiple items at the same time with little to no risk of cancellations.
- TSPs should place an accurate expiration time on bids whenever appropriate. If new circumstances arise that do not allow the provider to service any open bids, the TSP should be sure to come back to the site and cancel them.
- When a match is made, TSPs should contact the other party as soon as possible and stay in contact with them throughout the transaction. TSPs should respond to emails and phone calls promptly. Many unnecessary cancellations occur because the customer and the TSP do not communicate well or enough.
- Members should leave feedback and remind others to leave feedback for them so customers have more information, aside from cancellations, to base their evaluations on.