Lori Youngberg

President, FreightClaimAudit.com

Specialized areas of Expertise

Transportation management, root cause analysis, process improvement, cost reduction, contract negotiation and proper implementation of Vendor Buying Agreements through cross-functional integration of requirements.

Years of Experience

21 years.

Professional memberships/associations/certifications?

I am currently a member of NASSTRAC and COSE (Council of Smaller Enterprises) and completed the transportation management series at the University of Wisconsin, Madison (Executive Education division)

W&L: Current role and responsibilities within it?

LY: President of FreightClaimAudit.com, responsible for developing and growing the business and handle all financial aspects.

We specialize in the automation and management of loss and damage claims; recovery of invoice deductions, non-compliance fines and charge-backs typically imposed by retail customers and the root cause analysis necessary to facilitate elimination of claims and deductions at their source.

I have found that not everyone wants to fully outsource these processes, but many companies are interested in improving their levels of recovery or enhancing their staff training programs. To serve those clients, we offer a post audit of closed claims and deductions, recovery assistance of complex and aging claims and deductions, and customized training programs.

W&L: Tell Us A Little About Yourself What Ship-Shapes You? (Tell us about your career goals, what drives you as a woman in Logistics?)

LY: Some people work to live and others live to work…I fall into the latter category. I simply love what I do. I love the challenges, I love finding solutions to long standing problems that have been a costly source of frustration, then watching customer satisfaction levels improve when corrective action is implemented… then moving on to the next challenge.

W&L: Have you received any special recognition for your work? What is a career highlight?

LY: During my tenure at Moen Incorporated I received multiple Team Excellence and President’s Achievement awards as a result of process improvement and cost reduction projects. I later became the manager of the Fortune Brands Transportation and Supply Chain Council, a group comprised of the transportation and logistics management from each company owned by Fortune Brands. My role was responsible for managing joint transportation bids, contract negotiations, and other process improvement and cost reduction projects selected by the Council members. We were responsible for the implementation of “shared best practices” across the operating companies and more than $32 million in savings and cost avoidance, as well as countless process improvements.

W&L: Success Factors?

LY: The ability to listen to what customers need and want; learn what others are doing and how their best practices might be of benefit; the ability to compromise in order to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes; not resting on past successes—continuous improvement; and managing multiple high-priority tasks—no excuses, just do it!

W&L: What drew you to working in logistics/supply chain management? Planned or fell into it?

LY: Honestly, I think I fell into it. I happened to run across a job posting for a “routing coordinator”. It sounded fast paced and challenging—a position that would leave little room for boredom. Even though I had no transportation experience, I was lucky enough to be hired.

W&L: How has the business changed since you have joined?

LY: Very few transportation contracts were used at that time so I had to learn how to read and understand tariffs, which provided a great foundation. There were also few 3PL’s at the time, cross-docking and zone skipping was relatively new and most services were cookie cutter “take it or leave it” options. I think more companies have chosen to eliminate transportation departments in recent years, which I believe will eventually surface as a mistake. Unfortunately the impact of those decisions will not become apparent until the company suffers the repercussions of ongoing declines in customer satisfaction and increased costs. When the transportation expertise is gone, so too are the metrics and few people outside the industry have the expertise necessary to perform root cause analysis or develop truly viable solutions in order to maintain the superior service their customers came to expect. I believe the very best transportation departments are the ones you don’t think you need….they are just that good at resolving problems and keeping an operation running smoothly.

W&L: Would you recommend logistics as a career choice?

LY: I would recommend logistics as a career choice but, you have to be well suited to the environment, its challenges and constant change. If it’s not love at first sight don’t waste your time—move on. I would often tell new hires that they will either spend 3 to 6 months with us before they run for the hills…or they will find that it’s in their blood and will never leave. There doesn’t seem to be a middle ground — you either love it or hate it — not to mention the fact that you either change with the industry or expect to be left behind.

W&L: Have you ever felt that you were at a disadvantage being a woman in logistics?

LY: I don’t think I have ever felt truly disadvantaged. That is not say I didn’t feel the need to work harder than my male counterparts to prove myself, but some of that was self imposed. The person that hired me into the field of transportation 20 years ago, Michael Burge, gave me every opportunity to learn and grow. This was a time when few women were in transportation management so I did experience condescending comments from time to time—like the sales person that felt the need to very s l o w l y describe a flat bed trailer and how it differs from a dry van--but Mike would not tolerate disrespect. Some “old timers” would listen to my questions but turn toward Mike to answer and he would say, “Tell her—I didn’t ask the question”…he never had to do that a second time. I had some terrific mangers over the years. Reporting to someone who wants to see you succeed and advance and has your back made a big difference in what I experienced.

W&L: Any advice for women entering the field?

LY: Never stop learning—attend conferences, training seminars and talk to service providers and fellow industry professions on a regular basis so you never lose touch with innovation.

W&L: What is your Favorite Online Logistics Resource?

LY: Don’t have a favorite, it depends on what I may be trying to research. I often use the Transport Topics website, Tranzact’s Executive Briefings and Tranzact Inside, Supply & Demand Chain Executive, Supply Chain & Logistics Institute publications and Logistics World.

Favorite quote or words to live by

“If you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you have always gotten.”


Be faithful to that which exists within yourself.

~ Andre Gide