As a driver, owner operator or trucking company, you’re no doubt aware that truckload visibility, also known as load tracking and freight visibility, is a high priority for freight brokers and logistics companies. What you may not know is why the ability to closely track freight when it’s on your truck is so important to shippers, whose freight you’re transporting.
Read on to learn why load tracking and visibility are important to shippers and why they’re especially vital for shippers in the perishables and produce business. In this blog, discover how you can strengthen your relationships with brokers and 3PLs and increase the efficiency of your trucking business with the load tracking included in Trucker Tools’ free driver app.
The Power of Real-Time Freight Visibility
The power of real-time freight visibility is that is gives shippers the ability to react swiftly to unforeseen events. When shippers know in real-time, for example, that their freight is going to be arrive at the receiver’s facility four hours late due to an accident on the highway, they can share that information with their customer immediately and/or make other arrangements. Ultimately, real-time load tracking empowers shippers to provide top notch service to their customers and to remain competitive.
Access to accurate, real-time ETAs also allows shippers to manage their resources effectively, such as staffing at loading docks. Shippers use load tracking information to monitor the efficiency of their operations, as well, as higher efficiency often translates into higher profit margins. Some shippers may even use visibility as a performance metric for brokers and 3PLs, which directly impacts you and the loads you can haul.
The Limited Shelf Life of Perishables and Produce
With perishables, time is of the essence and visibility is critical. Any perishable product has a limited shelf life and any delays in transit can cost the shipper money. Visibility of freight allows shippers to make adjustments in the event a shipment is running late or if they’re not able to make intended deliveries. If visibility is there and a delivery issue arises, shippers may have a backup plan in place that they can use to purchase produce from other growers. There also may be specific perishables listed in sales promotions or store flyers that have to arrive on time to meet the promotions and consumers’ demands.
With produce, there also is not much, if any, inventory in storage. Produce goes directly from the growers to the store shelves because of its short shelf life. Another factor to consider is that fruits and vegetables often are sold based on weight. The longer produce sits, the more moisture it may lose, which means lighter weights and smaller sales. Commodities like lettuce, broccoli and kale are not only shipped refrigerated, but also ice-packed. Delays in shipment can cause the ice to melt and turn leaves brown, which reduces value and shortens shelf life.
Load Tracking Tools That Reduce Calls from Brokers, Provide Transparency
To date, 850,000 truckers have downloaded the free Trucker Tools driver app and that number just keeps growing. Here’s why: Trucker Tools’ driver app provides you with 17+ highly-sought after features and tools that are designed to simplify your life on the road. Our all-in-one driver app provides you with real-time information on weigh scales, truck stops and fuel prices, rest areas, Wal-Mart locations, parking, optimal routes, nearby repair shops, nearby medical facilities, weather, truck washes and more. Trucker Tools’ driver app also includes Book-It-Now, which automates your process for finding and booking loads with your favorite brokers.
The free Trucker Tools driver app includes a real-time, GPS-based load tracking tool that can integrate with your brokers’ transportation management systems and their shippers’ preferred visibility platforms, including MacroPoint, Project44, 10/4 and FourKites. These integration capabilities reduce the number of check-calls you receive from brokers and 3PLs, which in turn strengthens your relationships with brokers and 3PLs further because it helps them operate with greater efficiency. Because Trucker Tools’ driver app is a third-party solution instead of a broker-specific app, you can use the load tracking feature in the driver app with all of your brokers and 3PLs.
The driver app’s load tracking tool is completely transparent, too. It does not monitor, use or share personal information from your phone without your knowledge — that includes text messages or images from your phone. You have to agree to turn load tracking on in order for it to start and any time that load tracking is on, you receive a notification on your smartphone that includes the name of the broker/3PL who is receiving your location information. You also have the power to pause or cancel the load track directly in the app, if needed.
If you want to learn more about the free Trucker Tools driver app, check out Carriers: How Book-It-Now Can Reduce Your Workload, Increase Drive Time. To download Trucker Tools’ free driver app, visit https://www.truckertools.com/carriers/.