March 20, 2020 | Trucker Tools

Managing Supply Chain Challenges During the COVID-19 Pandemic

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It’s a difficult time for everyone, from health care workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic to businesses trying to survive during a shutdown of public gatherings. The pandemic is hitting the transportation industry as we see layoffs of drivers and brokerage/logistics staff members, disruption of intermodal and import/export traffic, and truck capacity tightening in the Southern United States.

Some of the supply chain challenges you’re facing during the COVID-19 pandemic as a freight broker or logistics provider include high demand for the shipment of emergency supplies. As consumers up their spending on food and supplies, stock of retail grocery and essential items also may need to be replenished more frequently.

Reduced hours and staffing at loading docks and retail locations may impact delivery scheduling and transit times, as well. Your shipper customers may have a heightened interest in the safe and secure transit of their goods, and/or special instructions and protocols in place in response to the Coronavirus.

COVID-19’s Impact on Brokerage/3PL Operations

One of the biggest shifts occurring is that you may need to transition your operations from your company office(s) to a work-from-home model. If you didn’t already have the infrastructure in place for telecommuting and managing remote workers, you may have to purchase new software and other tools for your remote workers and operations, particularly if your processes are manual. This may add additional, unexpected overhead for your business.

Your current software platforms also may not be well-suited for remote working, especially if the software doesn’t provide web-based access for employees. The increase in demand for truck capacity may be so great that your staff members may be overwhelmed with booking transactions and have little time for other important tasks, which can further limit productivity.

The Challenges of Remote Working

Even if you do have the infrastructure in place for remote working, it does present challenges for brokers and 3PLs. As Steve Oatley of FreightBrokerLive points out, “Working from home is not something that everyone can manage. It takes a lot of responsibility and time.” As you transition to a remote working environment, it’s important to stay in touch with employees and co-workers using tools such as Facetime, Zoom and Skype.

If you’re transitioning to a remote workplace, Oatley recommends the following: “Focus on what you have to do each day and knock out each task one by one. Keep a set schedule, similar to what you do in an office. Doing so allows you to keep the same level of productivity.” 

Two Billing Cycles/60 Days of Unlimited Use of Trucker Tools’ Freight Visibility Platform

To help ease the burden on you and your brokerage/3PL business, Trucker Tools is offering current customers two billing cycles of unlimited use of our digital freight tracking platform. That means you won’t be charged any overage fees. We’re also offering new customers 60 days of unlimited use of the Trucker Tools digital freight tracking platform without any overage fees.

Trucker Tools’ digital freight tracking software and free driver app provide you with precise shipment location data on demand. Using our digital freight tracking software, you can track freight in real-time from a desktop computer with an Internet connection. Truck locations are updated every five minutes using the GPS technology native to the trucker’s smart phone. Using digital freight tracking minimizes contact between employees and is much faster than check-calls and other manual load tracking methods.

Trucker Tools’ free driver app is used by close to 900,000 truckers across the country. With the driver app, carriers can quickly find Wal-Mart locations where they can buy groceries and supplies. The driver app also helps truckers find restaurants and parking, as well as nearby doctors and hospitals.

To learn more about Trucker Tools’ digital freight tracking platform and our unlimited use offer, contact

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