On the Road with Loadsmart Ep 3: Hunter Transportation

We’re in the business of connecting the logistics industry, but that doesn’t stop at connecting shipments with carriers. This is our second episode of On the Road with Loadsmart, a platform to connect the industry to the stories that matter, inspire, and are essential for giving credit to the unsung heroes of the road we have the privilege to work with every day.

In this episode Aaron from Loadsmart sits down with Coleman from Hunter Transportation to discuss how since starting operations in 1998 with one truck (and subsequently growing his fleet to 35), he’s learned to brace for the bottom and ride the wave back up to profitability in volatile markets.

Aaron: Do you want to tell us a little bit about Hunter?

Coleman: My business partner and I Randal Orvig started the company in 1998, working out of a spare bedroom in the house. We had to throw one of the sons out, make him bunk with his younger brother and took over the office. Soon thereafter we were asked to vacate the premises because we were too disruptive. 

We started with one truck. That was my business partner driving it and I was doing the sales and dispatch. Our fleet is currently 35 trucks. We at one point were more than that, but during the pandemic we shrunk a little bit and now we’re back on the upswing to start building again.

We are an intermodal ocean container hauler. We move containers locally and regionally in Carolinas and Georgia. We own and maintain our own chassis. As we are both import and export, we haul a variety of commodities. 

Aaron: You’ve had the perspective to see volatile markets before the one that we’re currently in. Have you ever experienced the changes to your business that you’ve experienced over the last couple of months?

Coleman: Back in 2008 and 2009 with the financial meltdown, that opened our eyes to what could go wrong. And what we needed to do to solidify ourselves and get back up and rolling again. With every incident or episode you always hope there’s a bottom. And then you hope you can ride back up the wave to profitability.

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Loadsmart First Look Weekly Market Recap for Aug 10 – Aug 16

Join Loadsmart’s Carrier Sales Manager, James Fahey, for less than 60 seconds as he breaks down what happened last week and what to expect this week in the freight market.

This is a weekly series that brings the insights we use to get your shipments from A to B from our carrier sales floor to your home office.

What we saw last week

  • Volumes remained elevated last week, well above 2018 and 2019, running in the +20-25% range. The OTRI shows nearly 1 in 5 contracted loads being rejected, with linehaul rates pushing towards $2/mi. OTVI increased another 3.6% to a new all-time high of 14,238. 
  • FMCSA reinstated emergency restocking of food, groceries and paper products in the latest HOS waiver. The categories were removed in June, when they modified and extended the waiver, but due to current conditions, FMCSA extended those items into Sept. 14th.
  • USPS faced scrutiny this week as it brought in a new controversial leader. The organization is facing headwinds due to the significant amount of e-commerce it has been handling, an enormous financial burden due to pensions, and it’s place in the 2020 Presidential elections with mail-in voting. 
  • Initial jobless claims dropped below 1 million for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March. Though claims remain elevated and in recessionary territory, it’s encouraging when compared to the 7 million filings in March and economists expectations of 1.1 million claims. The bigger than expected drop in claims follows an ebbing in new cases and the expiration of the $600 add-on in unemployment benefits at the end of July.

What to expect this week

  • OTRI showed decreases last week, though the decreases were minimal, they were the first decreases since the great freight rally, which could indicate a stabilization or plateau in the marketplace.  
  • The possibility of another round of stimulus should be on everyone’s mind. Though the House and Senate were not able to agree upon a third round of stimulus, which can have a negative implication on consumer spending, we are seeing a spike in container rates particularly on the Trans-Pacific routes, which implicates a rate spike driven entirely by demand.

Stay Up to Date

With all the latest weekly and monthly market insights on our Youtube page. Questions about anything you saw? Email sales@loadsmart.com and let’s talk about how we can help you take advantage of real-time market conditions.

Loadsmart First Look Weekly Market Recap for Aug 3 – Aug 9.

Join Loadsmart’s Director of Carrier Sales, Jordan Abrams, for less than 60 seconds as he breaks down what happened last week and what to expect this week in the freight market.

This is a weekly series that brings the insights we use to get your shipments from A to B from our carrier sales floor to your home office.

What we saw last week

  • Volumes continue to increase now over 30% above past years and over 5% higher than March panic buying
  • There are still no signs of volumes slowing down So buckle up.
  • The market remains a carrier market – meaning freight is of abundance and they have their selection with lanes and rates.
  • As Americans adjust to the new normal they are spending less on services and more on goods causing increased demand for trucks. 
  • Hurricane Isaias caused freight volatility in its path up the east coast starting in the Carolinas and resting up in upstate NY.

What to expect this week

  • We can expect the tightness across the country to continue as volume, OTRI and rate trends increase
  • We are seeing lots of demand on the waters, inbound from China – volumes will continue.
  • We will feel the effects of Isaias as it caused flooding and facility shut downs in the NE. Expect rail freight to convert to OTR.
  • We also expect the Midwest markets to tighten as L/T ratios increase within IN, MI and the OH river valley 

Stay Up to Date

With all the latest weekly and monthly market insights on our Youtube page. Questions about anything you saw? Email sales@loadsmart.com and let’s talk about how we can help you take advantage of real-time market conditions.

Loadsmart First Look Weekly Market Recap for July 28 – Aug 3.

Join Loadsmart’s Carrier Sales Manager, James Fahey, for less than 60 seconds on this episode of Loadsmart First Look Weekly Market Recap.

This is a weekly series that brings the insights we use to get your shipments from A to B from our carrier sales floor to your home office. Each week keep up with what we saw last week and what we expect to see this week in the freight market.

What we saw last week

  • EOM means higher rates and increased volumes
  • Though employment, manufacturing and industrial production are down, the amount of finished goods flowing through the supply chain is continually increasing and straining tight capacity. OTRI has increased again from 18.57% to 19.18%. While we hit a new 2.5yr high for outbound tenders, as the US consumer is hungry for finished goods. As rejections continue to climb, national long-haul rates are averaging $1.88/mi, while spot rates are inching within cents of contracted rates, a massive inflection point for shippers to be cognizant of.
  • In addition, we saw DAT Spot rates increased again 2.6% last week marking 13 consecutive weeks of rate increases.
  • Rail carload data is showing the industrial sector is starting to recover, up 6.5% from last week, and though still down year over year, this could indicate a strong Q3 and Q4 for transportation providers.
  • Markets in Southern California, Texas, Little Rock, Memphis and Harrisburg show high tender rejection rates on “tweener loads” (loads that run between 450-800 miles), indicating that carriers have other options on mid-haul or long-haul loads.

What to expect this week

  • Hurricane Isaias made landfall in FL over the weekend and bring disruptions into the FL market. Anticipate inbound rates to spike, while outbound orders may fall due to production issues. The storm is projected to turn northeast throughout the week and affect large swathes of the Northeast Seaboard, bringing rain and coastal flooding.
  • The Ports of Long Beach and LA have seen another spike in container volumes, which could further strain capacity in SoCal. Intermodal cap is already tight in the area, well ahead of intermodal peak season, and tweener rejections are elevated out of California, as carriers are seeking to stay in the region. Expect tweener and long haul volumes rates to further increase.
  • The Port of New York reached a YTD-High for imports last week, volumes for Port of NY and NJ have seen a 32% increase over the past two weeks. This coincides with capacity constraints in much of the Northeast.
  • Initial jobless claims have increased for the past two weeks to 1.434million and continued claims rose 5.4% up to 17.02million. As Congress is still working to extend unemployment benefits and a second round of stimulus, expect headwinds until approved.

Stay Up to Date

With all the latest weekly and monthly market insights on our Youtube page. Questions about anything you saw? Email sales@loadsmart.com and let’s talk about how we can help you take advantage of real-time market conditions.

Loadsmart First Look Weekly Market Recap: July 20 – 27

Join Loadsmart’s Director of Carrier Sales, Jordan Abrams, for less than 60 seconds on this episode of Loadsmart First Look Weekly Market Recap for July 20 – 27.

This is a weekly series that brings the insights we use to get your shipments from A to B from our carrier sales floor to your home office. Each week keep up with what we saw last week and what we expect to see this week in the freight market.

What we saw last week

  • Volume and rejections remain consistently high when they should be falling compared to past years.
    • Lead by the So Cal and border markets
  • OTRI increased a full point to 17.9% from 16.8% Wednesday – Thursday 
  • DAT Line Haul Rates continue to climb when they should be falling
  • TX remains just as hot of a market as CA

What to expect this week

  • Some market indicators show SE softening. With decreased L/T ratios and rejection rates
  • Hurricanes are starting to pop up. This will affect the Gulf, FL and the East Coast. Hurricanes can have massive impacts on markets and capacity.
  • We expect the same Southern Cal and border markets to continue their challenging run.

Stay Up to Date

With all the latest weekly and monthly market insights on our Youtube page. Questions about anything you saw? Email sales@loadsmart.com and let’s talk about how we can help you take advantage of real-time market conditions.

On the Road with Loadsmart Ep 2: JN Ideal Transport

We’re in the business of connecting the logistics industry, but that doesn’t stop at connecting shippers with carriers. This is our second episode of On the Road with Loadsmart, a platform to connect the industry to the stories that matter, inspire, and are essential for giving credit to the unsung heroes of the road we have the privilege to work with every day.

In this episode Aaron from Loadsmart sits down with Jose from JN Ideal Transport to discuss how he had to ‘change everything, but it worked’ during the pandemic.

Aaron: Can you tell us a little bit about your business – how you started and where you are today?

Jose: We started in 2014 with a single truck. We were working with 7 trucks at the beginning of the pandemic. We were growing real good. When the pandemic came it brought us down a little bit, we went down to two trucks, we sold two trucks.

Normally we do a route in NY and we do a route in NJ, and business went down pretty good in those areas during the pandemic. And there were no loads to go to NY and NJ.

Aaron: How many loads were you doing between Charlotte NY/NJ before the pandemic and what did that go down to during it – did it go down to 0?

Jose: We were doing around 20 to 25 loads a week, when the pandemic came up we went down to 5 loads.

Aaron: When that happened did you ever question whether you would still be in business?

Jose: I didn’t know if I would make it through because business was pretty tough. There was no money to pay the insurance, no money to fix this truck, so I stopped all the trucks – and whenever one truck broke down I used one of the trucks I had in the yard and we survived like that.

Aaron: Do you think that you will eventually get back to what your business was like before this or do you think things are going to be a little bit different for the foreseeable future?

Jose: We are going to have to learn new ways to work

Aaron: What are some of those new ways?

Read More »

Loadsmart First Look Monthly Market Recap: July

Welcome to July’s Episode of Loadsmart First Look. This will be a monthly series that dives into the domestic freight market, the economy as a backdrop to the trucking industry, and the latest developments and technologies that are changing the supply chain.

Joining our moderator, Ethan Feldman, for our first episode is Jim Nicholson, the VP of Carrier Sales and Ricardo Salgado, CEO to discuss what they’re seeing in the freight market, how to reconcile record freight volume with record levels of unemployment, and the adoption of tech during Covid.

What’s going on in the market?

Ethan: Jim – I wanted to ask you the first question more of a macro view, what are you seeing in the freight market?

Jim: Post memorial day you really saw this gradual increase and then as you got further into June and more states were opening up more activities were coming back online that acceleration increased to where you see today where volumes are at all times high, plus 20% over prior years and rejects and capacity continues to be very much constrained. Post July 4th typically you see a drop off, but that absolutely is not the case this year and to me all seasonality trends in the market that typically follow, 2020 is just out the window.

What markets do you have your eye on?

Ethan: Could you speak to more specific markets and what you’re seeing in some of the hotter areas of the country?

Jim: One that we haven’t been seeing or talking too much about that I think is really interesting is the Mexico-US cross border. Laredo – Mexico is a top 3 trade partner over $500 billion annually with the US – and Laredo is by and large the largest entry to the US from Mexico of 40%. What we’re seeing in Laredo is volumes that are nearly double to the prior two years and you’re also seeing some of this in El Paso and McAllen as well. But what does this mean? There is a severe backlog of what Mexico produces for the US.

Why are we seeing record levels of volume, but historic levels of unemployment?

Ethan: So I wanted to ask Ricardo, a question I’ve been getting from my customers. How do you reconcile the freight industry reporting record volumes, record outbound tender rejection, with the look of the everyday American, spending is down?

Ricardo: That’s a fair statement and can be a bit confusing because typically economic activity is represented 2/3 by consumer spending. So given the uncertainty and unemployment that you’re seeing why on earth are rates up to the levels they are right now or why are volumes up 20% year over year? 

And it’s around end customers of trucking, and a big chunk of full truckload are essential services. Think about consumer staples, CPG essentials, such as food, beverage, water, pharma. So maybe instead of eating out at a restaurant, for example, where you use Ketchup to eat your fries, now you do that at home. You still consume that, so maybe you saw some shift from trucking being delivered into that restaurant into a grocery that ultimately ends up in your home. So net net, things still need to move. We have been able to help supplement these movements through technology. So for by digitizing, for example the pipelines into shippers, by integration into their transportation management system. That has allowed them to be much more efficient and procure capacity in a digital format

Ethan: That was a great take on the demand side, Jim do you want to talk about how stimulus running out may be effecting what we’re going to see capacity look like?

Read More »

[Webinar] How Integrated Dock Scheduling Improves On-time Service and Eliminates Traditional Scheduling Bottlenecks

Does this sound familiar? Time-consuming, manual scheduling that requires several phone calls and emails just to confirm a single appointment. And after spending all that time, you find out the driver’s ETA has changed, forcing you to spend even more time rescheduling the appointment.

In this on-demand webinar join Loadsmart’s VP of Product, Hunter Yaw, and Opendock’s Bob La Loggia, CEO, to learn:

  • How integrating Loadsmart’s Smart Scheduling technology with Opendock’s centralized dock management software helps remove friction and streamline your appointment scheduling process
  • How Loadsmart can instantly select and book the best possible appointment by using artificial intelligence to analyze travel time and other factors
  • How appointements can be rescheduled automatically based on changes to a driver’s ETA
  • How you can immediately benefit from a substantial improvement in on-time performance and lower rates

How to get started

Loadsmart wants to help you use technology to simplify and streamline what has historically been a time-consuming, complicated process, which is why we are excited about our recently announced technical and strategic partnership with Opendock.

If you are….

  1. An existing Loadsmart and Opendock customer: contact your Loadsmart Account Executive to enable the integration.
  2. Interested in learning more about Loadsmart: sign up for free at loadsmart.com or email sales@loadsmart.com.
  3. Interested in learning more about Opendock: sign up in seconds at Opendock.com or email sales@opendock.com

Meet the Winner of our #CarrierContest and $500: Rushan of Dispatch42

At the height of “panic shopping,” most Americans left grocery stores with essentials feeling lucky. At the same time, many of the drivers who arrived with them were down on their luck. So, we cooked up a fun way to have an immediate impact on one of our drivers by holding a #ThankATrucker Selfie #CarrierContest with a $500 prize.

Our Commitment to Connecting the Trucking Industry 

The events of the last few months have allowed us here at Loadsmart to evaluate our commitment to connecting the trucking industry. We soon came to the consensus that our responsibility doesn’t stop at connecting shipments with carriers and vice versa. 

To truly have a more transparent industry, we need to give shippers more visibility of their freight, but also give the industry more visibility of the drivers that are struggling to make ends meet while helping so many people do just that.

A message from Nick, our winner’s dispatcher

#ThankATrucker Selfie #CarrierContest

We’ve done several things to live up to this commitment already, including launching On the Road with Loadsmart, an interview series meant to connect the industry to the stories that matter, inspire, and are essential for giving credit to the unsung heroes of the road. In our first episode we interviewed one of our carriers, Joe Burks from American Citizens Transport, on his experience hauling freight through the pandemic. Catch the full episode here.

We also wanted to do something that could have an immediate impact on one of our drivers. From May 15 – June 15 we promoted our #ThankATrucker Selfie #CarrierContest across social media and via email. Drivers who sent a picture of themselves and their truck were entered to win $500 courtesy of Loadsmart.

The outpouring of responses into our inbox showed just how eager many drivers are to share their stories. We plan on using our growing platform to highlight as many of these as we can. Through them all, one thing was clear: drivers were truly pushed to the limit during all of this. While most of America shut down, they were put in overdrive.

Meet The Winner, Rushan



Rushan left home during the pandemic and started living in his truck. He’s been doing it for three months and is an incredibly hard worker. When we spoke to Nick at Dispatch 42, he said “Man, Rushan was feeling really unlucky…maybe his luck’s changed.”


What’s Next

Catch all the episodes of On the Road on our YouTube channel and keep your eye out for more contests just like this one in the coming months as we double down on our commitment to connecting the trucking industry.

How Digital Freight Technologies Can Help Shippers During The COVID-19 Crisis

With most Americans sheltering at home under government stay-at-home orders, the COVID-19 pandemic has flipped the switch on the domestic freight market.  

Responding to Abrupt Market Disruptions With Digital Freight Technology

The freight frenzy came on fast but seems to have left even quicker. US Freight volumes have plunged to the lowest rate since Freightwaves began recording them in 2018. 

Capacity continues to loosen with most of the country on lockdown and with industries not fully functioning there isn’t enough freight to keep capacity tight. 

Logistics and supply chain companies remain the backbone of the U.S. economy and the American way of life. 

So, how do supply chains continue to function smoothly and consistently during such an unprecedented and unplanned for global crisis?

What’s Happening In The Domestic Freight Market? 

Over the past year, the outbound tender index had been remarkably low, putting pressure on carriers and brokers throughout the market because the majority of freight was moving through primary award carriers. 

The market saw low rates of rejection by carriers as they were grabbing all their contracted or fixed opportunities, leaving little spot or overflow freight available for carriers and brokers. 

What is the Current Status of the US Freight Market?

Market conditions quickly shifted in late February and March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  We initially saw levels that exceeded 2018 in early March, but now things are starting to return to pre-crisis levels. 

It’s not just the extreme levels that we saw, but the rate of change that was extraordinary.  It wasn’t a steady gradual adjustment with capacity decreasing week over week or month over month with rejection rates increasing, leaving more spot freight on the market. It was as though, almost overnight there was an explosion of spot freight coming into the market that needed to be covered. 

It’s important to note that what we are all seeing behind these numbers is not just business as usual. Seasonality trends and all normal expectations were pushed aside as the highest levels in months appeared out of nowhere.  

Moving freight is always a critical function in the US economy, but the unprecedented level of urgency, the critical nature of the goods being moved and the need to get them to their destination quickly given the current crisis situation. 

What does the COVID-19 data say?

  • Volume fell 30% off this year’s peak on Mar 23.
  • Supply is strong.

The Outbound Tender Rejection Index sits at 5.06%, off a high of 20.2%. When the spot market cools, carriers return to more profitable or consistent contracted business. That means carriers reject fewer contracted tenders = lower OBTRI.

  • Rates on Long Haul runs have tumbled while short-haul rates remain stable.

How Can Transportation Management Systems (TMS) Keep Supply Chains moving during COVID-19? 

Shipping companies should be turning to technology to help weather the storm and come out on the other side of COVID-19 set up for success. Technology allows shippers to collaborate with supply chain stakeholders while they are working remotely and makes connecting with additional truck capacity easier and more efficient. 

NOW is the time for shippers to lean more heavily on technology. 

3 Ways your TMS can help combat market volatility?

At Loadsmart we believe that leveraging technology and thinking about your TMS from a broader perspective gives shippers an advantage when faced with market volatility.

1. Accelerate Rate Discovery with Instant Rates

For shippers, especially those with a large volume to cover, the challenge of getting a price, that’s not a paper rate, that you have confidence in, and that’s truly indicative of the actual capacity that’s also bookable is tough. 

Many companies that were using more efficient solutions to cover their spot freight prior to the COVID-19 crisis are reverting back to older solutions to keep their heads above water. 

The need to get rates, capture data coupled with the complexity and confusion in the market has caused them to go back to swapping spreadsheets over email with lists of carriers and brokers. 

Getting rates, understanding what genuinely bookable truly liquid rates are out there is generally a challenge, especially for companies that haven’t invested in integrations with more machine learning-driven instant pricing solutions. 

Still, in the current market, it’s even more difficult. Just capturing the eyeballs of a carrier or broker to make sure they get you a rate is a challenge and knowing if the rate is going to be good and how long it’s valid is difficult. We believe that ultimately this is not a challenge shippers should be facing. 

We recognize that in a market like the current one, there are going to be multiple problems to solve and considerable challenges to overcome. Yet, we don’t think that getting a bookable rate should be one of them. 

It really should be much more straightforward.  Much more scalable. And much more automated. 

So those having to make procurement decisions can spend their time and their energy on more critical challenges than just trying to figure out what rates are available. 

Artificial intelligence is fundamentally changing how freight is priced and shipped.  

The thought that someone on a sales team receives a rate request then has to connect with operations and others within a brokerage or carrier, trying to understand what availability is out there is exhausting. Then they still have to decide how much to mark it up and how much they can squeeze out of the customer, then after some time which can be hours someone gets back to the shipper with an instantly bookable rate –  those days are behind us. 

Pricing calculations need to use the power of artificial intelligence and machine learning models. 

AI-powered pricing provides shippers with many more rate options while reducing the headcount cost associated with calculating rates.

Having a sales team, whose compensation is almost entirely driven by how much they can squeeze out of a customer and how much they can mark up to the shipper focused on calculating rates is not necessary. 

Now you can have algorithms calculate the rate, and you don’t have to pay them a commission. 

The market then becomes more efficient, which allows us to offer more value to Loadsmart customers rather than price gouging, which has been typical with spot in the past. 

Using a machine learning model allows us to provide our customers with an instantly bookable rate in a matter of seconds, by ingesting large amounts of data (over 500 different data points) allowing us to provide a rate within 2 to 3 seconds in any one of over 900,000 lanes across the United States.

2. Make Your Routing Guide Respond to Market Conditions

Let’s dig a bit deeper into the idea of the routing guide and how integrating your routing guide with a solution like Loadsmart makes your routing guide better and smarter.  

Those that didn’t see much volume running through your routing guide last year have certainly seen the dust blown off that routing guide recently.

What Is The Problem With Traditional Freight Routing Guides?

Traditional routing guides are static. Routing guide rates only get updated a few times a year, and loads can spend hours or days in routing. Rates are often significantly higher than the spot market. 

Why Are Dynamic Freight Routing Guides Important?

With Loadsmart’s dynamic routing guide, rates update in real-time and we accept 100% of tenders instantly. You can take advantage when market rates are below routing guide rates. 

Integrating with Loadsmart’s dynamic routing guide allows you to reduce the amount of freight that goes to the spot market, you can get routing guide freight covered much faster, and pay less to move freight than you would by relying on only static rates

3. Find the Best Carrier, Faster with Algorithmic Sourcing

Algorithmic sourcing is the best way to get a carrier to cover a load. Getting the right pricing, knowing the rate you are paying is reasonable and that the tender gets accepted by the carrier broker is critical.  But it’s also imperative to understand that when you are working with a broker like Loadsmart, how they go about choosing the carrier who ultimately ends up moving your freight.

Algorithmic Sourcing – The Old Paradigm vs. The New Normal

Traditionally the only way for a broker to get a load covered was to have an army of carrier salespeople pounding away at keyboards and dialing the phone all day, communicating with carriers trying to get freight covered.  

We understand and respect the value that comes with a carrier sales team and have our own carrier sales team at Loadsmart. That said, we also realize that over the long term, much more freight needs to be covered based on algorithmic decision making rather than by individuals to allow carrier sales to focus on the relationships they have with carriers. 

Making sure carriers meet service levels and are performing as they need to is a better use of carrier sales time versus worrying and touching every single load. 

Algorithmic sourcing allows you to move the load through the system without the support of a carrier salesperson (unless in the case of an exception), giving your team time to build better relationships with carriers and while increasing operational efficiencies. 

How does Loadsmart Use Algorithmic Sourcing? 

There are 3.83 Million Class 8 Trucks on the road in the United States. 

For shippers that were recently struggling to get their freight covered, that may seem like not enough, but the reality is there is a tremendous amount of capacity out there in total. That’s important to note because it speaks to the complexity and the challenges associated with choosing a specific truck to move a particular load. 

Considering the complexity of a problem where you measure in millions, not single digits or tens of thousands, it’s hard not to think that there really has to be a better solution out there. 

One would imagine there has to be an algorithm out there that is capable of finding way more options than a person possibly could. 

Who has the time it would take to consider millions of options before making a decision? Not logistics professionals who need to ship a lot of items very quickly while keeping costs down for both themselves and their customers.

How Does Loadsmart Help Shippers Consider Millions Of Freight Options?

Loadsmart helps shippers consider millions of freight options by using technology as much as possible. We start by determining which carriers we feel should be part of our network. 

We use technology to make better carrier network decisions by integrating with all sorts of 3rd party data sources, including RMIS, FMCSA, which gives us access to inspection data and carrier safety records and even integrations with load boards. 

Load board integrations are essential to us, not because we are trying to move freight on the load board, but because it allows us to monitor carrier behavior on the load board. 

Here’s an example of why load board monitoring is essential.

By integrating with load boards, Loadsmart’s able to see how many trucks on average a given carrier has posted on that load board. That’s important because we also know how many trucks they have in their fleet. We get that number directly from the carriers we currently work with and easily capture the number from other sources when it’s not. 

Let’s say we know a carrier has ten trucks in their fleet. I can see that on one or two major load boards they are consistently posting 50, 60, 100 trucks. What data has historically told us is that it’s probably a carrier you don’t want to work with because they are representing that they have much more capacity than they do. 

They may be out there fishing for loads for trucks even though they already accepted a tender putting them at high risk for being the type of carrier that will drop a load just before pickup because they got a better offer. That is not the type of carrier Loadsmart wants to move our customers’ freight. 

Making sure the carriers that you have in your network are carriers you want to be doing business with is just one of many examples of the things Loadsmart can do with the massive amounts of data we ingest from 3rd party sources. It allows us to solve particular problems for our customers.  

Bonus: Keeping Your Loading Docks Open And Fully Utilized 

Loadsmart can help improve the throughput of your loading docks to ensure your facilities, which may already be under pressure under current market conditions, are running as efficiently as possible

While this is the way everyone books appointments, we believe there is a better solution that improves the throughput of facilities while also reducing driver wait time.

In any market condition, the quality of driver experience is super important, but especially in times like now, when every minute and every hour of driver time and facility availability is vital. We want to make sure that both the driver over time and the facility capacity are being used in the most efficient way possible, not wasting anyone’s time and not wasting available dock hours. 

So, how do we make that happen?

We accomplish this by integrating with the facility to capture real-time dock availability through an API allowing us to book an appointment when booking the load automatically. 

That allows us to book an appointment automatically when booking the load. Instead of having to call or email the facility, we can grab an appointment instantly and automatically by integrating with the doc scheduling tool that you are using. 

Integrating via API allows us to grab the appointment availability and lock in the appointment much quicker while also taking advantage of the tracking data we capture. At Loadsmart, we are obsessed with tracking and put the data to work by using the real-time ETA of when the truck is going to arrive at the facility to see if we need to update the appointment, which we do automatically while the drive is still en route.

By doing this, we are able to avoid situations where drivers arrive at times outside their scheduled appointment time. For example, a driver’s expected to arrive at noon, but we know thanks to real-time ETA data that the driver is going to get there at 8 AM.

Rather than having the driver sit there and wait for four hours, we can automatically ping that facility via the integration with the dock scheduling tool to see if there is an earlier appointment available. Then if there is an appointment that is closer to the driver’s real-time ETA, we can grab that and give back our previously scheduled time.

Why does this matter?

The person at the gate doesn’t have to worry about trucks showing up early or late, and drivers don’t have to sit there and wait for their initially scheduled appointment if they are too early or to get worked in if they are late. 

Instead, we more closely align their ETA of their truck with an appointment much closer to their arrival time. Meaning you have fewer drivers waiting at the gate and less driver time wasted waiting at a facility in general. You can improve the throughput of the facility because you have a better match with when the truck arrives and when there is an available gate to get that truck loaded or unloaded and move on to the next truck.

In times like we are experiencing now, driver time and facility efficiency are critical.  But in any market conditions, we all need to show more respect for drivers’ time and the driver experience.  

Automating and integrating with the dock scheduling tool allows us to reduce driver wait time and be much smarter about real-time appointments, which improves your network. 

How Can Shippers Prepare For The Next Supply Chain Disruption?

Shippers can and should prepare for the next supply chain disruptions by implementing digital freight technologies NOW, not when the next disruption happens. 

The last few months have shown shippers that volume can surge, and outbound tender rejections can rise to unprecedented levels at the drop of a hat. 

While outbound tender rejections begin to fall, providing stability for shippers now is necessary to ensure the next disruption doesn’t catch you off-guard.  Integrating with digital freight technologies now will give you peace of mind and make managing the next crisis easier. 

As uncertainty grows, shippers are turning to technology for greater clarity to leverage instant market-based pricing and dynamic routing to deliver real savings while improving service. 

Don’t wait for the next disruption to happen. Integrate your TMS with Loadsmart now to help you build, manage, and tender loads. 

Learn more about how Loadsmart integrates with BluJay, Oracle, and MercuryGate.

To Our Carriers: Thank You

These are uncertain times, but you’re not letting that stop you from keeping America running.

Only a couple of weeks ago, transportation was humming along as usual: freight volumes were normal and flat and carriers were only rejecting their contracted loads 4% of the time.

Since COVID-19 has gripped America’s conscious and economy in early March, carriers have been faced with an unprecedented surge in shipments that eclipsed records previously set in 2018.

FreightWaves Sonar

Freight volume seemingly grew +30% over night and tender rejections grew to their highest point in several months.

This surge has forced truckers to spend even more time on the road and less time with their families… all to keep grocery store shelves full and pharmacies fully stocked.

From everyone at Loadsmart, we want to thank our carriers for their work and acknowledge their sacrifice.

And while you’re out there for all of us, we’ll be here for you.

To our carriers, thank you for giving Loadsmart the opportunity to make your job a bit easier in a difficult time. Together, we keep America running: https://hubs.ly/H0p11sG0

Loadsmart Named to the 2020 CB Insights AI 100 List of Most Innovative Artificial Intelligence Startups

Loadsmart recognized in @CBInsights #AI100 for innovative approach to #logistics + addressing longstanding challenges to reshape movement of goods

The CB Insights research team selected the AI 100 from nearly 5,000 companies based on factors including patent activity, investor quality, and proprietary Mosaic scores. The Mosaic Score, based on CB Insights’ algorithm, measures the overall health and growth potential of private companies to help predict a company’s momentum. This year’s list includes:

  • 100 emerging private companies with a cumulative of $7.4B in funding across 300+ deals from 600+ unique investors. 
  • 10 unicorns (companies valued over $1B)
  • Healthcare, retail & warehouse, and finance & insurance companies across 13 countries

Loadsmart is the only digital freight marketplace to be recognized in its category, underscoring the company’s innovative approach to addressing supply chain challenges through a mix of advanced technology and deep-seated industry experience. 

Click ☝️to download full report

“At Loadsmart, we pride ourselves on cultivating meaningful relationships with those at the helm of the supply chain—shippers and carriers—and crafting visionary AI-based solutions to ensure they succeed and thrive,” said Ricardo Salgado, CEO and co-founder of Loadsmart. “We’re honored to be recognized as a leading tech innovator in the commercial transportation sector, and enthusiastically look forward to continued collaboration and growth.”

Here’s to looking forward to 2020 and beyond!