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4 Areas That a Cloud-Based TMS Can Improve Real-Time Data

Cloud-Based TMS
https://youtu.be/NKijabfiEvQ

This is the second in a series of videos on why we believe the future of trucking TMS systems lies in the cloud, providing the ultimate in connectivity and mobility. We’re calling it The Road To Transformation because we are in transformative times. Today, I’m gonna talk to you about four areas that can be vastly improved with the real-time cloud-based software as a service implementation.

Hi, I’m Chuck Melton, Owner of Melton Technologies, coming to you from Florette and Chuck’s dining room. Yes, I’m working from home today as a lot of us are. Today, I’d like to dig just a little deeper into four specific areas that could see significant improvement on this Road To Transformation. Bear in mind, these are not the only areas that can be improved, but they are critical.

First, order entry, getting the order into the system.

One of the obstacles in any TMS system is getting accurate data into the system. Order entry can be cumbersome due to the amount of data required on the shipment. One of our constant focuses is to search for ways to simplify the data entry. Most of the day-to-day data entry comes when an order is entered. The cloud opens up other opportunities to get the data into the system. Of course, there’s ADI, which can be a complicated and expensive process, but it may be required by the shipper or receiver, and we can make that happen. But it is old school. I am of the opinion that today’s technology offers you better ways to transmit data electronically. From formatted emails to customer portals, to downloads straight from the shipper’s data, these are avenues that should take priority in this real-time shared data world. One concept we will continue to promote is more direct data sharing from the shipper to the carrier, another reason we are advocates for the cloud.

Second, dispatching and driver communication.

We installed our first dispatch system in 1986, many years ago. Three years later, we linked to satellite tracking devices on trucks, so we have been focused on connectivity and mobility, and connecting dispatchers to drivers for 30 plus years. So, you might say, “What is so different about the cloud “if you’ve been doing this for 30 years?” First of all, with a dispatch system tightly integrated with an app on a tablet or a phone, you are providing real-time information through the life of the shipment that is easily accessible or shareable with all the parties required. That in itself is huge. One thing is certain in these uncertain times, shipment visibility from origin to the final consumer is becoming more and more important. Well over 50% of shippers say shipment visibility through the life of the shipment is becoming more critical. Furthermore, the drivers are more integrated into the process, and decisions can be made in real-time based on facts as they currently are.

Three, invoicing.

Even in this day in time, we have seen carriers that are taking up to a week or more from the delivery of the shipment until that shipment is invoiced. Why? Because they need a signed delivery receipt from the receiver of the goods. In an integrated web-based application with a mobile app, the driver can be the trigger to invoice by simply delivering the shipment and scanning the delivery receipt associated with the load. The document is automatically assigned to the freight bill and can be emailed to the party responsible for payment. So, to make this perfectly clear, a shipment delivered in Los Angeles can be billed to the payer in Jacksonville, Florida simultaneously. Billing has never been simpler or quicker as it is in a cloud-based environment with a good driver mobile app.

Four, customer service.

Customer service in 2020 and beyond is much more than getting a shipment from A to B. As I stated earlier, in this time of shifting supply chains and new traffic patterns, shipment visibility is more important now than ever. A carrier needs to be an extension of the shipper, continuously providing shipment status, ETAs, and proactive notifications to the shipper during the life of that shipment. If a customer is a key part of your business, you might even want to consider a customer portal where one can see all information related specifically to that customer online. Online relationships between customers and carriers have never been more essential. So, to sum this up, digital relationships between shippers and carriers will continue to increase in importance, and those relationships are facilitated in the cloud. Someone made a point to me the other day and it went like this, “You would never propose “to provide a product or service to someone “if it would not help them because it would be unethical.” On the other hand, if we have a product or a service that we know can help you and provide real value, isn’t it our responsibility to let you know?

My pledge to you is that we are only interested in working with people we can help, and provide real value. If you believe we can help you on your Road To Transformation, give me a call at the number below, or email me at cmelton@meltech.com. Happy trucking, and have a great day.

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