Collaborating on visibility: the key to customer-centric offerings

Jan 29, 2021
Supply Chain
Innovation

Visibility has become a ‘must-have’ capability

The supply chains of today are closely linked with all business functions within an organization, beyond production, and directly impact the customer experience. In order to ensure smooth operations, the management of physical flows should also rely on very precise information management. As transportation and logistics professionals know, uncertainty is an integral part of daily life in the supply chain. But facing a lack of visibility is no longer accepted within the market, when the possibilities to collect rich datasets, and to extract insights from them, have never been so accessible and so important. Although sometimes perceived as a constraint, or even a threat, transparency is an essential factor in enabling efficiency and as a result competitiveness for all stakeholders.

Sales forecasts, production, inbound logistics, final customer delivery, inventory management, measurement of CO2 emissions: if we consider the entire supply chain, the potential amount of data to be exploited is immense. But due to a lack of appropriate processing and sharing, key information sometimes lies dormant in isolated IT systems, whether at the level of the transport industry as a whole or in the context of a company’s own supply chain ecosystem.

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Pairing cost visibility with transport visibility

Upply, a digital freight transportation marketplace, combines data science and business expertise to power their “Compare & Analyze” solution, which makes it simple for shippers to compare a quote for road, air or sea freight to the median market rates. Priding themselves on market neutrality, this data can be leveraged to support strategies and decision making, tailored to an organization’s specific needs, when carrying out a transport tender or developing an implementation strategy for example.

Beyond price visibility, executional visibility of transport operations is a key driver of customer satisfaction and it’s now possible through supply chain digitalization. Visibility and traceability have always been a major capability desired within the sector. In road freight transport, the adoption of telematics boxes (or on-board computing) on board trucks in the 2000s enabled a real leap forward in the collection of real-time information, but it was the democratization of PLCs, 15 years later, that broke down the silos of IT systems.

Shippeo connects to all carrier systems, which today represent over 700 different data sources as part of a two and a half year investment to develop the best ETA service in Europe. As a visibility provider, Shippeo’s digital platform is able to do more than just collect and display the position of vehicles on a map. Thanks to a proprietary algorithm based on a machine learning algorithm that integrates more than 200 parameters, such as traffic, industry regulations, weather and historical travel data), it provides highly accurate estimated time of arrival (ETA) for goods. This makes it possible to identify and anticipate potential problems, proactively alert customers and facilitates corrective actions. Any anomalies on the condition of goods (quantity or quality) can also be reported.

More ecosystem integration, with neutrality a focus

These new capabilities are being integrated into Upply’s new unique marketplace solution, which is dedicated to putting road transportation shippers and carriers in direct contact. The idea is to leverage digital capabilities to make new methods of collaboration possible, and simpler, within the sector.

Both Shippeo and Upply value marketplace neutrality, sharing the perspective that it is an important factor in delivering a truly customer-centric offering. Upply gives carriers the choice as to whether or not to take advantage of the Shippeo service, which is at no extra cost. Likewise, Shippeo tracking data is not shared until after a carrier has been selected by a shipper and only data relevant to the specific journey is visible to ensure user privacy is respected. Shippeo enables collaboration by making data easier to share, and by making systems easier to integrate, thanks to its own API (Application Programming Interface) integration. As a company, Shippeo’s philosophy is to make networks open and transparent, and is even able to connect with competing RTTV platforms.

Read the announcement to learn more about Upply and Shippeo’s partnership and feel free to get in touch with our team to discover more about integrating Shippeo’s real-time transportation visibility solution into your operations.

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