When you think of using technology in your business with the goal of increasing operational efficiency, you have to think about how you can scale faster without incurring exponential expenses. If you’re a broker moving 1,000 loads/month today, how can you move 4,000 loads/month without hiring new employees and increasing your expenses?
Well-designed, true digital platforms will reduce inefficiencies in your operations, align your teams, increase effectiveness, reduce your costs and provide new opportunities to grow your business without increasing your employee headcount. However, not all digital tools and platforms deliver the same results. If you’re a freight broker or 3PL that wants to increase the operational efficiency, you have to make thoughtful technology choices to reach your efficiency goals and maximize the ROI on your technology investments. Be sure to target these three essential digital tools to increase efficiency in your freight broker business.
1. Mobile App To Facilitate Real-Time Data Exchange
The first digital tool you need to increase efficiency in your freight broker business is a real-time mobile app. A real-time mobile app is the ideal way to send and receive data to and from drivers/carriers for load tracking and capacity procurement purposes. The truth is that without real-time data, it will be near impossible to reduce check calls, cover loads faster or automate essential business activities within your operations.
With a real-time mobile app like Trucker Tools’, data on when a truck will arrive at its next stop, where the truck will next be available, what reloads are available, and where capacity will be in the future is updated in real-time thanks to the GPS tech in the trucker’s phone. On the flipside, real-time data exchange means that truckers and carriers don’t have to pick up the phone to answer your check call or jump on a load board to see what loads you have. Instead, they can share their location data automatically via the Trucker Tools mobile app for load tracking purposes. Drivers and carriers also can view information on your available loads and even book your loads digitally because of the real-time data exchange occurring via the mobile app.
2. Digital Freight Matching
Digital freight matching is a must have tool if you want to increase efficiency in your freight broker business. Digital freight matching platforms such as Trucker Tools’ help you locate the right truck for the right load quickly. Instead of scrolling through email messages, several pages of load board posts or calling dispatchers to find trucks, you can search for in-network and out-of-network capacity in seconds. With Trucker Tools’ digital freight matching technology, it’s easy to research specific lanes and capacity availability before accepting a shipper’s load or when you’re developing new lanes.
Unlike load boards, email messages, phone calls and other manual capacity search methods, capacity data in Trucker Tools’ digital freight matching platform is continually updated. That means you’re only looking at available trucks — not at trucks that have already been booked by another broker. With digital freight matching, you can cover loads faster, plain and simple. Reducing the time and resources required to cover a load increases your operational efficiency, reduces costs and gives you the time and resources to pursue additional loads without hiring on a new team of employees.
3. Real-Time, Digital Load Tracking
The third digital tool you need to increase efficiency in your freight broker business is real-time, digital freight tracking. It’s no secret that check calls take a lot of time. A driver or dispatcher may be on another call or a break when you call them. Then, you have to leave a voicemail message and wait for them to call you back. Meanwhile, you don’t know where the load is and don’t have an accurate ETA to report to the shipper and receiver.
Trucker Tools’ real-time visibility platform uses the Trucker Tools mobile app and the GPS tech in the trucker’s phone to provide you with real-time location updates every five to fifteen minutes, depending on your preference. You can view the real-time location of trucks on your computer screen instead of making phone calls, waiting for callbacks and then manually updating an Excel spreadsheet. Brokers who have instituted Trucker Tools’ load tracking software have been able to reduce check calls by 40 percent and increase their overall operational efficiency by 20 percent.
Carrier adoption rates of Trucker Tools’ mobile app and its load tracking tool often are higher than with single function load tracking apps. One reason for this is that many carriers and owner operators already have the Trucker Tools app on their phones. To date, the Trucker Tools app has been downloaded more than 1.3 million times. The app also includes 17+ other features and tools designed to save truckers time and money when they’re on the road.
For more on how to grow your business with a real-time digital platform, read How To Use Technology To Scale Your Freight Broker Business. Schedule a free demo of Trucker Tools’ real-time freight tracking platform, digital freight matching and Book-It-Now®.