Transportation and freight brokerage are continually evolving. In the current landscape, you must be willing to digitize your operations if you want to keep pace with your competitors and provide the service levels your customers now expect. Just going digital isn’t enough, however. There are certain core tech tools for freight brokers that are must-haves, especially if you have a growth mindset for your brokerage or 3PL business. These core tech tools reduce errors, improve productivity, decrease costs, and help you build fruitful relationships with both shippers and carriers.
Check out these three must-have tech tools for freight brokers.
One of the most impactful tech tools for you to have and use as a broker is a real-time, digital freight tracking platform. Digital freight tracking software typically includes a companion driver mobile app that sends you real-time, GPS-based location pings every five minutes. Access to real-time tracking data means that when a driver encounters traffic or is otherwise going to be delayed, you know almost immediately. When you use a real-time load tracking tech, you can provide highly accurate ETAs to shippers, reduce or eliminate check calls, and streamline workflows for your team. Bonus: you’re not waking up drivers to ask them, “Where’s my load?”
Imagine this: instead of making 10 or 12 phone calls to cover a load, you search for available truck capacity with a few clicks of your computer mouse in a matter of seconds. That’s what digital load matching (also known as digital freight matching) technology can do for you. Freight matching tools leverage real-time, real-world truck capacity data to match your uncovered loads with both in-network and out-of-network truck capacity. Once you find the capacity for your load, you can send the carrier a digital message through the platform or call the carrier, already knowing that the carrier is likely to have a truck available when you need one.
Owner ops and carriers spend a tremendous amount of time fielding phone calls from brokers like you who are searching for truck capacity. Automation tools like Book It Now® reduce the number of manual phone calls you have to make to carriers (and owner operators) and shorten your negotiation process with both. When you post a load as a Book It Now® load to your digital freight matching platform, you must include your preferred price. Once posted, carriers and owner operators can book the load digitally at your preferred price via a web browser or mobile app. They also have the option to send you an alternate digital rate quote. When a Book It Now® load is booked, it’s automatically recorded in your TMS and the carrier/driver automatically receives an email confirmation confirming the appointment.
Read our newest broker tip blog, “Broker Tip: Four Ways To Initiate ELD-Based Tracking.”