Best Payroll Software For Trucking Companies – “If you have it, a car will bring it to you. Food, clothing, medicine, household and industrial fuel. The day our cars stop, America will stop.”
Imagine if all the trucks in the United States were collected – they would reach the moon, says Target Transportation. And about the additional figures: according to the study, the freight market is worth more than $ 193 billion, with approximately 616,700 businesses in the United States providing freight services. Trucks carry about 11.84 billion tons of freight annually, which is about 72.5 percent of the total freight in the United States, with nearly 12 million people involved in trucking operations.
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All these impressive figures show that road transport, the most common form of freight transport (especially influenced by the development of the e-commerce sector), is a very large and complex system that includes many tasks. And, like any other industry, it cannot but be affected by the global digital transformation. Various technologies have been introduced to help manage and optimize cargo operations. In this article, we will talk about how software products used in cargo management help to improve the main processes of cargo transportation.
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Since trucking is part of the supply chain, logistics and transportation industry, consider checking out our related articles for a broader understanding:
Freight software is a type of transportation management software that helps transportation companies manage their day-to-day operations and improve efficiency by integrating all aspects of the business into one system. This type of software is specifically designed for carriers, but some features can also be used by other parties involved in the shipping process, for example brokers, shippers, manufacturers, etc.
As with other control technologies, the main goal of software in trucking is to reduce manual intervention, improve operations, synchronize data and reduce human error. Building a transportation business includes the following basic steps:
There are a number of one-stop solutions on the market that cover all these aspects and help you manage your freight business (see our review of shipping management software in a separate article). Some of the popular ones are Axon Software, ProTransport and TruckingOffice. They allow you to consolidate all your operations in one system and provide all the most important industrial functions.
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The day-to-day challenges of trucking are similar for large companies that operate large fleets and owners that operate with only one vehicle (91.3% of trucking companies operate less than 6 vehicles). However, the unique needs of each trucking company may require different solutions and approaches. So, let’s take a closer look at each part of the process, the challenges involved, and how technology solves the industry’s problems.
Referral research shows that 84% of consumers are unlikely to return to a brand after one bad experience. Dispatchers are the ones whose job it is to make sure that the entire delivery process goes smoothly.
Dispatch operations are the backbone of the trucking business as they coordinate the movement of goods and arrange freight, customers, trucks and drivers on the same schedule. Shipping is somehow dependent on all other parties. That’s the problem.
Planning and arranging shipping and delivery includes finding cargo routes, obtaining all cargo details and requirements, making shipper and receiver contacts, scheduling loading and unloading times, etc. However, in this business, things happen all the time. Cars break down and need repairs, shipments are canceled or rescheduled, traffic jams and weather cause delays. many variables to manage with pen and paper.
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Negotiations with customers and informing them are the same as before, as they also require constant communication with all parties involved. This includes communicating with ETA, notifying of possible schedule changes, preparing for possible detentions, and so on. If you have a large fleet and don’t use any software, your dispatchers probably spend most of their time on the phone, torn between getting updates from drivers and notifying customers of updates.
The objective of the drivers is to create the most efficient schedule with the least delays, ensuring that all drivers are busy, taking into account their preferences, as well as their type of equipment and available working hours (HOS). It’s a Herculean task if you try to handle it manually, especially with all kinds of accidents and changes happening every day.
Driving or building a good economic route can be part of the routine or the responsibility of the driver, depending on the company. I will discuss this in detail in the next section.
Truck and truck tracking is critical to providing the most accurate information to customers and planning ahead. If you don’t use some kind of tracking software, this again means endless phone calls that distract and annoy drivers and make customers feel insecure about what’s going on with their products.
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Enforcement of basic regulations means compliance with safety standards set by the government, such as health checks and routine maintenance. Although this is an additional responsibility on the driver, controllers must enforce the rules to avoid fines and quickly detect possible equipment malfunctions. More on this section below.
Processing documents such as price confirmations, waybills, bills of lading and sometimes invoices is a major part of a shipper’s job and requires a lot of care and accuracy. Manual entry of information is always full of errors, and more paperwork complicates the process. In addition, gathering data from various sources to produce the necessary reports is impossible without a computerized system.
Modern technology makes it possible to optimize the dispatch process by obtaining information from telematics devices, electronic registration devices (EDD), tracking devices and driver data in one system.
Planning. When considering a trucking system, make sure that shippers can easily see the available vehicles that meet the requirements of a particular shipment, as well as their current location. This will allow the sender to assign them according to the driver’s HOS. In addition, some devices automatically suggest the next load for the driver based on their proximity and remaining free hours. Or, depending on how your company works, drivers are automatically notified if there is a suitable load nearby.
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Tracking Tracking the movement of the cargo throughout the delivery process is a feature that is enjoyed by all players of this game. A vehicle GPS device or smartphone app allows you to track the truck’s location in real time and track its movements. Customers can access the tracking device to get full details and/or alerts can be set up to automatically notify you of the driver’s expected arrival time.
Electronic documents. Paper documents do not need to be printed, they can be created, signed with an electronic signature and sent directly to the e-mail system with a few clicks. The production and exchange of digital documents saves time and reduces errors caused by manual intervention.
Data collection. Telematics is a technology that collects traffic information and transmits it over cellular networks. Therefore, the GPS and telematics equipment installed in the vehicle, video recorders and sensors not only help to monitor, but also collect data about the behavior of the driver and the condition of the vehicle. All information is then sent to the back office for analysis to detect changes in risk behaviors or potential service issues. Modern software can collect vast amounts of data, providing visibility across the team and providing analytics to make better decisions.
Driver’s request. Many driver software providers also have a driver related app. It facilitates communication, allows the exchange of documents (such as fuel receipts, loading information, and PODs), supports route sharing and updates, and facilitates necessary compliance procedures (such as tracking HOS and assisting with routine inspections of vehicles).
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A driving task can be part of a scheduled activity or it can be a separate device. We have already discussed the problems with the path and the solution for improving the path. This kind of software helps to create the most efficient routes, in which all the necessary stops are planned and reduce the required time and fuel consumption.
Previously, dispatchers or drivers had to plan routes manually with little or no up-to-date information on road closures and weather conditions, let alone actual traffic conditions. If it is a trip with several stops and a fixed time in each place, the task becomes impossible.
It is also important to remember that routing devices for individual customers, vendors, or delivery services are different than those used for freight. The reason is that not all roads are suitable for large vehicles. Truck tracks are designed to avoid obstacles such as tight curves, steep inclines, low clearance bridges, and anything else that could cause dangerous conditions. For example, the Pulaski Skyway in New Jersey on the 1/9 US has banned trucks since 1934 due to safety concerns and high accidents.
So, the road improvement program for vehicles is to build roads considering all restrictions and prohibitions. In addition, he needs scheduling functions to schedule pickup and delivery times.
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Today, navigation tools automatically generate optimal routes based on real-time updates on all relevant factors such as weather and traffic conditions. When you create a route, you can choose different optimization goals for each trip, such as minimize distance, minimize time, or balance distance and time.
The system should include a desktop version for senders and
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