Tire Tracks: Driving the Logistics Industry

Shipping Automation Spotlight with Trucker Tools | Episode 4

January 18, 2023 Banyan Technology Episode 4
Shipping Automation Spotlight with Trucker Tools | Episode 4
Tire Tracks: Driving the Logistics Industry
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Tire Tracks: Driving the Logistics Industry
Shipping Automation Spotlight with Trucker Tools | Episode 4
Jan 18, 2023 Episode 4
Banyan Technology

Episode 4 of Banyan Technology’s Tire Tracks™  podcast features Max Leach from Trucker Tools, a real-time load tracking and predictive freight matching solution. He discusses the need to adopt the tools of today’s standard to successfully track shipments and how automation is transforming the spot freight market. 

Show Notes Transcript

Episode 4 of Banyan Technology’s Tire Tracks™  podcast features Max Leach from Trucker Tools, a real-time load tracking and predictive freight matching solution. He discusses the need to adopt the tools of today’s standard to successfully track shipments and how automation is transforming the spot freight market. 

Announcer:

Welcome to Tire Tracks, a Banyan Technology podcast driving the logistics industry. And now your host, Patrick Escolas.

Patrick Escolas:

Hey, I'm Patrick Escolas here with Banyan's podcast, Tire Tracks. We're here once again at BrewDog in Downtown Cleveland. I'm joined with Max Leach, who's with Trucker Tools. Thank you, Max.

Max Leach:

Thanks for having me, Patrick. Happy, to be here.

Patrick Escolas:

Yeah, I'm happy you're here. We've had a few beers. And he just forced his way into this conversation.

Max Leach:

I did.

Patrick Escolas:

Yeah. So let me start off by saying you're with Trucker Tools. What does Trucker Tools do? I love that you mentioned Banyan. But when when

Max Leach:

Trucker Tools has a unique space in the market where you talk about full truckload, did you have to go and track we facilitate connections for brokers to be able to handle down all these different truckload carriers? Or did you put how does that relationship happen where these truckload their spot freight meet needs, and as well as be able to track that freight in real time. We feature a an integration through carriers are coming to you? Because we've been in the space Banyan that allows us to achieve both without the dispatchers having to leave their TMS workspace. for a long time, and we have maybe, what -- four API based truckloads. The truckload carriers generally don't want to play in the automated space, We find that carriers that reside within smart capacity, have the ability to not only book freight in real time, but they can also gain a fair amount of exposure. Because every driver that signs up on trucker tools platform is going to be aggregated under that MC. So there have been times where I've brought on a new carrier, for the first time they've logged into their carrier facing portal where their dispatchers can work out of, and they'll see a full list populated with trucks and they'll say, How is this possible? And it's because every truck that signs up or every owner operator or driver that signs up with trucker tools, has to include that MC as part of their signup. So, we're activating them behind the scenes. And then ultimately, we are facilitating the means for them to communicate with brokers directly. And we utilize TMS connections like Banyan's. to be able to do so.

Patrick Escolas:

And why is banding important in it for you? Because I was told today that Trucker Tools is the most downloaded app, and then everybody who's moving trucks across the world has has the app in it. And I don't deny that for a fact. But why bring Banyan into it? Obviously, I have a bias. I've got Banyan all over my stuff, and they pay my jack. But what is what does that mean to you trucker tools?

Max Leach:

Sure. Well, within the brokerage world, in modern times, there has been a need to adopt the tools of today's standard. And we found that Banyan has been a very capable partner at delivering this. From the moment that we sat down with you guys at the table and decided that we wanted to deliver on an integration that met the tools of today's standards by being able to service a load, from the point of inception, all the way to the point of delivery, you guys were very key and being able to deliver on that because from that moment, we had a functional integration within 30 days. So we're not able to just 30 days, we're not just 30 days, less than 30 days, we not only have the ability for your brokers to post loads to our platform. But as soon as a in network carrier books that load in real time, that carrier is going to be assigned to the load on Banyan's end within five minutes of the transaction happening. And then Banyan can send the track back to Trucker Tools for real-time visibility.

Patrick Escolas:

So that's, that's amazing. Not only because...so I'm an account manager. So, I obviously say that our team could do anything, but you're telling me that in 30 days, new partner brought on integrated, completely new, not new mode, but new expansion on top of that, within five minutes that's coming back at them?

Max Leach:

It's coming back. And as a matter of fact, we're going to be able to service new brokers that are on boarded and much less of a timespan than that.

Patrick Escolas:

Now, within five minutes on the comeback, so I'm really curious on this, is this when they hit the actual board and people are responding that quickly? We're talking the same truckload carriers there I might have to wait two or three days to get all of them come back?

Max Leach:

Well, there is a slight caveat to that, and that is that the carrier has to be approved and has to be in network on the brokers end and most of the time they will be

Patrick Escolas:

And let me stop you -- on approved on the broker end what does that mean what kind of vetting process that look like? Does anybody that's got enough money for a giant truck, or I mean, you know what's what's stopping what's stopping anyone from picking up my million dollars worth of shipment and I got no...I'm out of all that money because it didn't get there, or he's on the side of the road, or didn't realize that that bridge was a lot lower than it should have been?

Max Leach:

It's a very reasonable question to ask. Most of the time, when we have interest from a carrier onto a broker's load, that's going to be determined by whether or not they reside within that broker's approved network. So, if we don't receive them as a Banyan in-network carrier, the broker is going to have to go and manually approve them themselves.

Patrick Escolas:

Okay, so there's some parameters set in place. So that's not Joe Blow.

Max Leach:

Absolutely. And, Trucker Tools also has a functional integration with Safer Web. So at any point, if any carrier that exists on Trucker Tools fails to meet their insurance requirements, or otherwise they go out of business, or what have you, we will blacklist them from our side as part of our value proposition so that brokers don't have to be concerned with potentially working with a carrier that doesn't meet their eligibility requirements.

Patrick Escolas:

That's a huge aspect. And within that, I heard Kyler talking earlier today about some of these things. And he talked about, they'd get blacklisted on that. But at the same time, my question is within that parameter, and that preferred, you know, how was that determined on the back end? Like you say, preferred, is that because I chose them, or I use them more than once? What does that look like?

Max Leach:

Well, Trucker Tools does have a multitude of ways in which we aim to help you reutilize carriers, But ultimately, the relationship is going to be dictated by what we received from the TMS and what the broker manually approves on our platform. At the end of the day, we don't want carriers to be able to click Book-It-Now if the broker isn't comfortable with them doing so.

Patrick Escolas:

And that's going to stop some of the double postings that we would see on other truckload boards as well? As far as you know, if it's got to be from them -- or am I jumping into too many questions here?

Max Leach:

No, you're not jumping into too many questions at all. We solve that issue by sourcing every load from the TMS directly. So any load that exists on Trucker Tools is is sourced by real time TMS data. So if it's there, we have data to support its, its current residing within an available status. If that load is no longer available, if a carrier gets assigned to it, that is going to be transmitted to us over API. We're going to be able to make that determination in real-time.

Patrick Escolas:

And that load will have a unique enough ID that it could then be reporting into the system or something There's no risk of that whatsoever. like that. Though that's, I think that's where half of the questions would come from by using the truckload board, right there. So that's awesome. So we talked about Banyan,, we talked about Trucker Tools. Let's talk a little bit about so within the past year. It's been crazy, to put it nicely, within supply chain, and logistics. What have you seen -- as far as not only the Trucker Tool's side, but full truckload as a whole?

Max Leach:

Sure. We've seen an uptick in digitally-booked transactions, particularly through the Book-It-Now medium. And so what we're gaining from that is that carriers very much like the ability to be able to go to a broker that they've worked with before, see an appealing rate on a load that fits within market norms. And to be able to click on that load, book it right then and there, get assigned to the load, and then receive their rate con details very shortly after

Patrick Escolas:

They want to work with the people that they get paid on-time with. Yeah, no, I mean, that that's where it all comes down to at the end of the day with almost our entire industry. Where's the money going is getting to me on time, and is it accurate? So and that's, I like your answer there. And that's that's kind of what I had heard. And I was trying to confirm some of that. Now that being said, what is the year look like further down the road? What does 2023 look like for Trucker Tools?

Max Leach:

Oh, my gosh, it means an uptick in digitally-booked transactions. It means a greater number of integrated ELD carriers.

Patrick Escolas:

Hold on one second. ELD -- define that for me. I've heard it all day to day, and I'm not from the logistics space. And I have nodded my head and pretended like I knew what was going on, but I have no idea what that means.

Max Leach:

So, aside from our normal method of tracking, which utilizes the GPS methodology on a cell phone...

Patrick Escolas:

Geo-fencing, as they like to call it.

Max Leach:

Geo-fencing -- exactly. Yeah, ELDs provide a useful alternative, because it is a physical device that resides within the truck.

Patrick Escolas:

Now what does ELD actually stand for? It's electronic something, right?

Max Leach:

It's an electronic logging device, as far as I'm aware.

Patrick Escolas:

You got it!

Max Leach:

Yeah. If the acronym is any different than that, then I'll...

Patrick Escolas:

We will not be held accountable for this conversation.

Max Leach:

I'll face the backlash personally. We have a lot of carriers that are already set up

Patrick Escolas:

That's fair. with us for ELD tracking. And so, they have the merit of being able to enter in a truck and trailer number, as opposed to a cell phone number. So it's already done.

Max Leach:

So it's already done. And through the logging, we're able to provide end-to-end tracking, we're able to provide location updates geo-fencing events, much in the same manner that we would with a cell phone-based track.

Patrick Escolas:

Now, other than those fun parallel roads in Florida that somebody mentioned, how accurate is both those tracking methods?

Max Leach:

Oh, I pretty much identical. I mean, as far as the difference between the ability to track the ELD and GPS, it's negligible, we get pings, less than five minutes.

Patrick Escolas:

I was gonna say-- we talking every hour, every five minutes?

Max Leach:

Every five minutes, we can count on a reliable location ping.

Patrick Escolas:

And if I keep clicking, it's still going to be five minutes?

Max Leach:

Yeah -- absolutely!

Patrick Escolas:

Okay, fair enough. No, I appreciate that. So we've talked about last year, we talked about next year, five years from now Trucker Tools. What does that look like? What does the industry look like? What does it look like from Trucker Tools' perspective?

Max Leach:

The industry is going to continue to change and evolve. There's going to be...there could be something equivalent to what we've experienced through the pandemic that could happen, that could really change-up the way in which carriers and brokers interact with one another.

Patrick Escolas:

Max is predicting another pandemic.

Max Leach:

I hope not. Trucker Tools definitely has an interest in being able to expand. And so, I think that we may see our operations potentially expand further than just the borders of the United States.

Patrick Escolas:

Okay.

Max Leach:

We have had a couple of successful tracks with Canadian ZIP codes and we, we currently track transit from Mexico as well.

Patrick Escolas:

So, you're just playing in the US sandbox with a little bit of Mexico, and then maybe Canada, maybe all of North America eventually?

Max Leach:

And maybe more. We look at whether or not we can maintain a good service coverage...

Patrick Escolas:

Right.

Max Leach:

You know, whether or not we can maintain competitive rates within each market...

Patrick Escolas:

it's got to be economically viable.

Max Leach:

It's a large expansion effort. It's something that we're definitely interested in. And we probably will consider once we have scaled to that level.

Patrick Escolas:

Now, head of partnership or an integration, does that mean you're in the back-end coding it?

Max Leach:

with our current technology able to make that happen, we've had a couple of interesting use cases where the wrong cell phone number was entered into a track, and somebody in a foreign country such as Iran happened to get that track and track themselves on their phone. So, we have seen successful use cases and outside our market.

Patrick Escolas:

Status still counts as delivery, right?

Max Leach:

Yeah, of course.

Patrick Escolas:

Right? No, no, I appreciate it. Max. I love this back and forth. Now, I've had a chance to talk and you've told me about all that. So, if you got one chance here to tell either your customers or people that don't know charter tools, what's one thing anyone in the logistics space, from your perspective, needs to know looking at either Q4 or 2023? Right now, here's your chance.

Max Leach:

Banyan and Trucker Tools offer a very unique partnership, and that we are providing brokers with the tools of today's standards that can carry a load from its inception to the point where it is delivered to the shipper's liking. And, by that merit alone. I think that it is a very strong integration to consider. I think that there are a lot of merits and a lot of reasons to get behind both teams. We managed to bring this integration from nothing to the point where it's fully functional within 30 days. And I'm confident that our onboarding process can do even better for our mutual broker customers.

Patrick Escolas:

That was a great answer -- you even used Banyan in it and I appreciate that. And I'm sure my marketing team appreciates it. Thank you, Max. I really appreciate you it's a left-hand shake. That's why it looks awkward. But thank you. Here we are at Banyan for Tire Tracks and I'll see you next time.

Announcer:

Thank you for listening to Tire Tracks. Watch for new episodes dropping monthly and subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and other podcast apps. For more information about Banyan Technology, visit banyantechnology.com