In today’s world of freight brokerage and logistics, you often need multiple software platforms to ensure you meet your customers’ needs and stay competitive. Of course, choosing which software platforms to use in your day-to-day business often is the tricky part. There are literally hundreds of different technologies available to the transportation industry, often with different functionalities and capabilities. There are platforms that help you manage your customers and their freight, connect you with carrier capacity, automate some of the most repetitive activities in your operations and provide much more. In this blog, you’ll learn about which software platforms will provide the highest return on investment for you not only today, but also in the future.

Check out these top three software platforms for freight brokers.

1. Carrier Relationship Management Software

As you well know, you can’t move shippers’ freight if you don’t have truck capacity to move it with, which is why carrier relationship management software is at the top of this list. Carrier relationship management software (CRM) helps you cultivate relationships with carriers from the first moment of contact between a carrier/owner operator and your freight brokerage or 3PL. It also is highly effective in strengthening relationships with carriers and drivers who are already in your network. With a CRM, you can cultivate relationships with specific carriers based on the lanes in which they run, the kind of freight they move and their previous track record with your company.

CRMs like Trucker Tools’ Smart Capacity platform provide you with a host of digital tools that not only help you run more efficiently, but that also encourage owner operators and carriers to stay in your network. The Smart Capacity CRM gives you the power to offer premium loads and convenient digital load booking to top-performing carriers and drivers. The platform’s Broker Advantage tool allows you to create a customized portal for your drivers in the Trucker Tools’ app, while customizable searches let your team search for capacity from already onboarded or preferred carriers before searching the general marketplace. All of these tools in a CRM ultimately cultivate long-term relationships between your company and carriers/owner operators.

2. Real-Time Load Tracking Platform

It’s no secret that most shippers prefer or even require real-time load tracking from the brokers and logistics companies with whom they work. The reality is that if you want to retain your current customers and/or build your customer base, you must be able to provide real-time freight visibility. An effective load tracking platform includes a companion driver mobile app that can transmit real-time location updates from the driver and load back to your team. Well-designed load tracking platforms ping the driver’s location frequently so that you know if a driver is going to be late or has accidentally gone to the wrong loading dock.

Trucker Tools’ real-time visibility platform includes all of the above capabilities. The Trucker Tools driver app uses the GPS tech in the driver’s smart phone to update your team every five to fifteen minutes on the location of the driver and load. On average, brokers and 3PLs that use Trucker Tools’ load tracking software are able to achieve 72 percent start-to-finish load tracking success. Most of the brokers who use Trucker Tools’ load tracking platform are able to reduce check calls significantly and achieve higher service levels with shippers. In fact, many smaller brokers are able to attract large shipper customers due to their ability to consistently provide real-time visibility.

3. Transportation Management System

A transportation management system (TMS) is a logistics software platform that helps you manage compliance, onboarding, shipments, customers, invoicing and more. With a TMS, your team members can generate quotes on shippers’ loads, dispatch outbound trucks and view documents with a few mouse clicks. Ultimately, a TMS can reduce your operating costs, simplify internal workflows and boost operational efficiency. TMS analytics help you better understand your operations and identify bottlenecks and inefficiencies that may be impacting your profit margins.

Trucker Tools’ Smart Capacity and real-time load tracking platform both integrate with the most popular TMSs in use today. These integrations make it possible for you to source capacity, manage carrier relationships and track loads in real-time with Trucker Tools right from within your TMS. Our integration partnerships with leading TMS companies make it possible for your team members to access all the information they need in the TMS without opening another software program, browser or app, which ultimately helps boost productivity and further increase efficiency.

Don’t miss “Trucker Tools’ Smart Capacity: Building Relationships for the Long-Haul with Smart Technology.” Schedule a free demo of Trucker Tools’ Smart Capacity CRM and real-time visibility platform.