Cloud-based transportation management system (TMS) technology isn’t new to the logistics industry, yet for a long time, TMS technology development has been focused on mid- to large-sized shippers. Until now, that is. A few weeks ago, C.H. Robinson formally introduced Freightview™, an online freight management platform that cuts the time and money small- to mid-sized businesses (SMBs) spend on freight shipping by streamlining quoting, booking, tracking, and reporting.
I recently sat down with Jason Roberts from Freightview, and asked him to share his thoughts and insights about TMS innovations for SMBs.
Tell me a little more about Freightview and how it fits benefits SMBs.
Freightview is a neutral, cloud-based freight management platform that allows SMBs to connect directly to their existing carriers and third party logistics providers (3PLs). When they run freight quotes, they see all of their rates, transit days, and service levels in one place for easy comparison. They can schedule pickups, create bills of lading, and print shipping labels, then track from pickup to delivery. And, they can instantly visualize their shipping data with charts, graphs, and maps. Employees can ship freight in a fraction of the time they do using traditional systems, and managers and business owners can gain control and visibility of their shipping operations.
What about the SMB market made it a great opportunity for innovation in TMS technology?
Larger companies have been enjoying the benefits of TMS technology for the past 15+ years, but most smaller businesses are still managing their freight shipping by visiting carrier and 3PL websites, sending emails, and logging data in spreadsheets. We asked them why they hadn’t adopted TMS technology and what it would take to get them on board, and they told us it would have to be:
- Quick to set up and load their service providers and rates—they don’t have the time (or the patience) for long implementation projects
- Priced in line with what they’re paying for other types of cloud-based software
- So easy to use that their people would pick it up naturally, without extensive training and change management
We decided we had the right mix of innovative ideas, software development skills, and transportation expertise to satisfy those requirements in a unique way—so we built Freightview.
What makes Freightview’s innovative approach to using TMS solutions different from the way other freight management systems support SMBs?
Freightview is different because it satisfies those three key demands from SMBs:
- By using cutting-edge technology and a patent-pending setup process, we can have a shipper up and going with their own service providers and rates within days or even hours. It’s common for us to have a shipper sign up for Freightview in the morning and be using it to ship all their LTL freight—with their own carriers and rates—on the same day.
- We have affordable, transparent pricing—$199/month per location—and we give shippers a 30-day, no-obligation, free trial.
- We’ve carefully designed our software to have the best user experience in the industry. It looks great, but more importantly, it just makes sense, and it gets out of the user’s way so they can get their work done.
We assembled a highly skilled team and equipped them to build the best software they could. We’re intentional about gathering candid feedback from our customers, and we’re nimble, so our software is constantly improving in creative and practical ways.
What customer feedback have you received so far?
In a recent survey, our customers said they’re saving nine minutes per shipment and reducing their freight costs by 10%. Business owners and managers have visibility to their shipping patterns and trends for the first time. When they negotiate with carriers, they have the facts they need to make the discussions smoother and more effective than ever.
How does Freightview fit into C.H. Robinson’s portfolio of brands and services?
Freightview is part of the Managed Services division of C.H. Robinson, along with TMC.
We’re backed by the strength and transportation expertise of C.H. Robinson, and, like TMC, we’re a neutral platform—a level playing field for every carrier and 3PL that a shipper uses. That includes keeping all of our customers’ data confidential within Freightview—never sharing it with anyone, including C.H. Robinson or anyone else.
And how does Freightview fit into the evolution of TMS technology?
Freightview brings cloud-based TMS software within the reach of SMBs, so it’s an important step forward in the development of freight management technology. Now our mission is to introduce innovations that are only possible with a widely-adopted cloud platform. We’re just getting started.
To learn more about Freightview, visit Freightview.