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Convoy ‘creating a new class of visibility’

“Creating a new class of visibility requires surfacing actionable insights from a complex data set that changes by the minute,” according to Dorothy Li, chief technology officer at digital freight network Convoy.

Li said Convoy is creating that new class of visibility with its newly released solution, Hi-Fi Visibility.

“Not only do we collect more data than other freight providers, we go one step further by distilling that data into interactive dashboards that surface anomalies shippers can act on to save time and money,” Li said. “With Hi-Fi Visibility, we want transportation teams to spend less of their time chasing down trucks so that we can partner with them to tackle higher-value, complex problems surfaced through Convoy’s unique insights.”

The new application includes up to 30 detailed reason codes for a driver to report a problem. For example, if a driver arrives at a delivery location and is told he or she has the wrong delivery number, the driver would report that in the application. The application would then ask what was wrong with the number and if the driver was given any clues to what the pickup number should be, giving a Convoy rep or a shipper the chance to quickly correct and send the right delivery number in real time.

“Historically, to solve this problem, a call would come from a carrier to Convoy, Convoy would email or call the shipper, sometimes waiting up to an hour for a response. It is the back-and-forth that produces industry waste. Now this information goes to Convoy and the shipper at the same time, creating radical transparency. … Our shippers who have been using the tool have reported a 34% decrease in email traffic because of it,” Mitchell Violett, senior director of product management, told FreightWaves.

Hi-Fi Visibility also gives shippers an opportunity to gain insight into each of their pickup and delivery locations, enabling them to benchmark those locations against each other but against locations among Convoy’s network within the same region as well.

The new tool breaks down various location statistics like average dwell time, incidentals or accessorial charges per shipment, average facility rating from drivers, on-time delivery percentage and any comments left by drivers about the facility.

“Shippers can break these statistics down by date, time or day of the week. For example, if they see midnight is a choke point, they can work to spread the [pickups] throughout the day to improve dwell times,” said Prarthana Mistry, product manager at Convoy.

“One of our shippers used this to improve their operations. Over a four-week period, they were able to reduce dwell time by 60% and reduce accessory costs by 86%, from $43 to $6 per shipment,” she continued.

Along with the ability for Hi-Fi Visibility to be integrated into transportation management systems, including the company’s global shipping partner Flexport, the upgrade platform also gives shippers a facility dashboard to get status updates on their Convoy Go drop trailers and keeps them informed on yard management conditions.

The key to these visibility tools comes down to the company’s carrier network, which holds a 97% application usage, showcasing visibility tools are only as strong as its carrier adoption.

“App use is fundamental to Convoy,” said Violett. “We understood that visibility of transit was key to removing waste in the supply chain. From day one, we required app use of all of our carriers and we have built up a carrier base that understands the importance of using the app and the incentives that come with it including automated quick pay.”

With that carrier adoption, shippers within Convoy’s network can now reap true benefits.

“Shippers inherently understand that being a shipper of choice will lower their costs. These metrics are important for them because they want to see the same returning carriers bringing shipments to their customers,” said Mistry.

Watch now: What does the future of Convoy look like?

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