The Impact of Freight Technology on the Logistics Industry

Logistics Tech Outlook | Wednesday, November 24, 2021

FREMONT, CA: The logistics business has relied on a core, relatively consistent set of processes and technologies for decades to manage supply chains, people, and communications. As much as freight has changed over the last decade, many of its operations continue to rely on analog solutions, from phone conversations and emails to good old pen and paper. The notion that a multitrillion-dollar industry is built on the backs of primarily obsolete procedures is alarming. The truth is that logistics involves a large number of moving parts. While these processes are time-tested, they are rapidly losing their relevance in an industry that expects efficiency.

There are fewer substitutions than there are replacements. Businesses are rapidly improving the efficiency of their supply chains through the use of new technology and operational approaches.

The market for an integrated freight

In recent years, phone calls and email chains have been replaced mainly by algorithms and digital platforms. Hours spent waiting for a call or confirmation email is a waste of time, resources, and, ultimately, money. More logistics experts seek solutions to automate routine operations while also establishing a more cohesive communication stream throughout the supply chain.

Digital marketplaces are assisting in the advancement of data exchange and commerce. By bringing all stakeholders together on a single platform, it becomes easier to connect shippers and suppliers directly and in real-time becomes easier connecting.

What is a managed marketplace, and how does it work?

Managed markets are online portals that connect shippers and carriers through a live, interactive platform while offering operational assistance typically associated with a more traditional brokerage.

  • Marketplaces enable the following:
  • Shippers must locate carriers to transport their goods.
  • Carriers can sort through loads coming from a variety of sources.
  • Pricing and capacity are updated in real-time.
  • Customer-carrier matchmaking.
  • Online assistance.

This discards the need for carriers to make repeated phone calls to fill their vehicles or obtain information about a specific load. Additionally, it can assist them in reducing their empty miles and increasing their overall efficiency.

Marketplaces give shippers access to a vast network of carriers and a simple way to solicit bids. Due to the marketplace's management, all carriers are thoroughly vetted and, in some marketplaces, rated on their service. This implies that shippers can use the volume of carriers available on a standard load board while also benefiting from the peace of mind that comes with a more carefully cultivated pool of drivers.

Integrating transportation management systems (TMS) and managed markets has become a popular feature. Rather than learning how to utilize a new platform, many firms may now include these new tools and functionalities into their existing TMS and portals.

Integrating innovations into pre-existing platforms reduces the learning curve for users and accelerates uptake. This results in less time spent learning how to utilize something and more time spent using it.

Visibility and tracking

Additionally, some solutions have real-time tracking, which provides shippers with essential visibility. Drivers are relieved of the burden of reporting their locations and estimated arrival times. At the same time, shippers can check in on the position of their freight frequently at their convenience. This is especially advantageous and may be vital when shipping commodities across borders.

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