Apps and Online ToolsResources

Who would argue that the transportation industry is in a major state of disruption? The ELD Mandate, the continuing driver shortage, and a growing economy have all contributed to an ever-shifting logistics landscape. When we add in all the hoopla about autonomous trucks, platooning, and blockchain we can see that the disruption is ongoing. In this topsy-turvy environment, savvy digital freight brokers are reporting record-setting profits. We hear a lot about relationships and how successful 3PLs create and cultivate them. And I agree 100% that relationships are king, but I think technology and, more specifically, speed closely follow. Those of you with industry experience know exactly what I mean about speed. I fondly remember my first frenzied weeks working in a freight brokerage--it could have been Wall Street! The phones rang off the hook and no one talked--they yelled. Technology has quieted some of the noise involved, but it’s increased the pace--you only have so much time to react. Customers can and will give their freight to another provider in mere minutes. A carrier can book his truck before you’ve hung up the phone. Some folks say it’s the best time to be in logistics. I’m going to take that a little further and say--there’s never been a better time to work for a freight broker or a transportation company! So what makes me say that? It’s the amazing technology we can use and offer today! Most people think Transportation Management Systems (TMS), truck tracking software, or customer rate calculator tools (the big stuff) when they hear tech in freight brokerages. And sure, that’s correct, but I tend to think of the above technologies as enterprise tools for the organization. What I want to examine today are the must-have tools--tools that increase productivity and efficiency for front-line employees. Let’s take a look! Facebook App Social Media works for trucking and transportation! Okay, I’ll rephrase that. While Social Media provides a great forum for seeing pictures of your Grandma’s cat or an elementary school friend’s kids, it can do so much more! Take the Rate Per Mile Masters Facebook Group, for example. This is a master group that includes drivers, dispatchers and other experienced transportation professionals who post and comment about relevant topics concerning our industry. If you’re not a member of this group, you need to change that now--especially if you’re a freight broker. This group provides an insider’s look at the most compelling issues affecting drivers and will help you gain new insights into the ever-changing environment. And it’s only on Facebook! LinkedIn App LinkedIn is a little different from Facebook. The mechanics of the platform are similar, but the audience is geared toward white-collar professionals who want to network. You won’t find many trucking companies on LinkedIn, but you will find shippers and supply chain professionals. LinkedIn offers groups of like-minded professionals who provide valuable insights on the state of the market, as well as, best practices and government regulatory information. Don’t worry, you don’t need to master the art of social selling to make LinkedIn valuable, but you will want to keep your profile up-to-date and buff up your networking skills using the app. Ring Central App Yes, my heading is “Ring Central,” but feel free to substitute a VoIP phone system app of choice. We use Ring Central, and I think it’s pretty freaking powerful. No, I’m not suggesting that you turn into a workaholic and answer phone calls when you should be at home with your family. Actually, quite the opposite! I think given the right technology, Ring Central (or your VoIP app) can lessen your work time! For example, let’s say you have to run an errand or step out of the office briefly. With the right connectivity, you can do so without ever missing a beat The Ring Central App is cool because it has instant messaging, SMS, Phone, Voicemail, and Conferencing capabilities baked into a single application. In an industry where time really is money, it's invaluable to be connected (when you choose to be). It’s an exciting time to work in the transportation industry! Change often arrives alongside innovation. The problem is that it’s difficult to stay at the forefront of change and to utilize the technologies that can enhance both your work and your personal life. Here at Squirrel Works, it’s our job to study and use the newest and most effective technologies. We understand that you’re busy and don’t have time to vet each new app. So for now, check out Facebook, LinkedIn, and Ring Central. And when you’re ready to learn more about relevant apps or technology, give us a call. We’d love to chat!...
Apps and Online ToolsBloggingSales and MarketingSEOSocial Media

By now you have probably figured out that a good and solid marketing approach for 2018 is to establish your digital marketing strategy. Digital marketing has changed the way we do business and in hopes of not getting left behind, more logistics companies are focusing on their digital efforts. But how or where do you even begin? At first, you might turn to Google and while you’re sure to find answers, they might not all make sense and you can very easily become overwhelmed and put off figuring out your digital marketing strategy. To simplify it for you, we have made an easy to use infographic which outlines 10 questions that you should be asking yourself to help create a successful digital marketing strategy for your logistics and transportation company. ...
Apps and Online ToolsBloggingSocial Media

Gone are the days where potential customers rely on you handing them a business card or discovering your company through an advert in the local newspaper. These days, customers need you to be available everywhere, better known as online. To put it simply, without a digital presence, it is likely that your ideal customer is choosing your competitor over you because they don’t know that you exist. Online is not the future – it is the NOW – and delaying your digital marketing strategy any longer means that you’re saying no to growth and evolving with the rest of the industry. Just as your equipment needs maintenance to keep going, so does your marketing strategy, and right now, it demands the implementation of an online presence. Start by taking a look at your website – is it communicating your brand’s message? Does it say that you are leaders in logistics? Are you in the good books with Google? Are you using the best practices to ensure that your customer finds you with ease? Is your website mobile responsive? Are people able to connect to your social media platforms from your website? From there, it’s important to start implementing changes; perhaps you need a website redesign? Make sure that whoever you work with is caught up with the latest trends and practices and takes into consideration the effect your content has on your SEO. Have you spoken to them about what you’d like to achieve from your SEO strategy? What about your social media profiles, do they know which is best for the industry and when to use Twitter versus Facebook? Have they shown you WHY you need Google My Business? This can be very overwhelming at first, but that’s why it is so important to partner with a digital marketing team who already understands the industry, and shares your passion of taking your business to new heights. Digital marketing is simple when you’re working with the right people – are you working with the right people? Talk to us and we’ll show you!...
Apps and Online ToolsSocial Media

By the time Google+ rolled out, we were already too busy trying to keep up with a surplus of social media platforms, resulting in companies ignoring the importance and benefits that Google + and Google My Business provides. Is your company already signed up to Google My Business, why not? Unlike Facebook and Twitter, Google My Business isn’t for creating a conversation. Instead, it is an important tool that helps improve your ranking on Google while also making it easier for customers to find out key information about your company like how to contact you, where you are located and a direct link to social media platforms and your website. Google My Business is a free tool that takes a few minutes to sign up and offers a bunch of benefits, yet we still find that most logistics companies are not using the platform effectively, why not? Mostly because logistics companies aren’t really aware of its benefits or what Google My Business is meant for. Reality is that people barely have enough time to reply to emails, never mind figuring out whether their Google + and Google My Business pages are set up correctly to benefit from these services. That’s where we come in. AMT Squirrel Works have a passion for logistics and the experience to ensure that you’re making the most of your digital space. It’s no longer about having the biggest marketing budget but rather how effectively you use the tools that online media have provided. Learning to navigate these platforms can be overwhelming and often leads to you signing up and leaving your profile to gather dust, which can be even more damaging – trust the people who are driven to take your business to new heights. Trust Squirrel Works....
Apps and Online Tools

To provide the most creative transportation services to your clients, you may require the help of online logistics tools. In addition to boosting efficiency, online tools can help supply chain managers cut unnecessary expenses.   But there are so many tools out there! How do you know which ones work, which ones you should use?   Here’s a list of three great tools you should check out today!     Fleet Maintenance Pro This top fleet management software is all you need when it comes to accident tracking, driver management and much more. Fleet Management Pro simplifies tracking, preventative information, and scheduling repair for your fleet. This software is easy to use and gives you the power to track every tiny detail in your supply chain. It features color-coded and PM alerts to ensure you are notified when and if a specific vehicle or tool is due for maintenance or servicing.   MyRouteOnline Software This online logistics tool is a route planning program that enables you to create a single route or several routes on the go. The software allows you to plan routes according to your preferences according to your preferences for speed, length, or balance. You can also use MyRouteOnline to reload your routes online, to save and export your routes to Excel, and even print a large map of your territories and routes. Once you’ve created routes and exported them to Excel, you can share your route plans with drivers via GPS or mobile apps. MyRouteOnline works great for emergency dispatch, and also for capacity planning, GPS tracking, route casting, driver management territory management, and more!   ServiceMax App If you’re a logistics professional, you should consider downloading this mobile application because in the field of service management, it’s one of the best. The Service Max App merges the integration of order, service contracts, workforce, and interactive social media clients. You receive feedback from visitors and clients via social media. This feedback helps you reach benchmarks while creating a roadmap for improvement.   In addition to boosting your company’s performance, these online tools will turbo-charge your profitability and customer satisfaction. Which online logistics tools do you use?  ...
Apps and Online Tools

Most truck drivers spend hours on the open road, often accessing the internet through their smartphones. In fact, according to a recent survey by ATBS, more than 79 percent of drivers use smartphones for various purposes while on the road. Out of the 79 percent, approximately 91 percent said they use downloaded applications to monitor gas prices, traffic conditions, and the weather. Some of the reasons why the trucking industry is embracing affordable fleet management solutions that run on smartphones, tablets, and other handheld devices include driver shortages, rising transportation costs, increased regulations, and demanding customers. This article will disclose to you the 3 highly recommended apps for Truck drivers. Waze The Waze app became an overnight success when Google purchased it for $1.1 billion in 2013. This free routing app gives truck drivers the best route each day according to the updates from fellow app users. In order to enhance participation and to ensure that the information posted is as useful as possible, Waze users are rewarded for posting real-time traffic updates.  Besides making notes, users can also post photos to illustrate clearly what lies on the road ahead. The Waze app can be downloaded for Android, Windows as well as iOS devices.  *Waze doesn’t currently use truck routes so please don’t rely solely on this app for navigation. Fuelbook Fuelbook is a free smartphone application that is used by drivers as a fuel price locator. The Fuelbook application is updated six times per day to provide up-to-date fuel prices for thousands of pump stations across the United States. Using the Fuelbook app, drivers can locate the nearby fuel stations and even sort them according to their pump prices. Besides being easy to use, the Fuelbook application provides a list of open parking stations as well as lists of truck stop services. Its accuracy is what makes it a handy and powerful tool for any driver who is looking to save on exorbitant fuel expenses. Co-Pilot Mobile Navigation App This app addresses the specific logistical needs of all truck drivers. Apart from providing directions specific for truck drivers, the Co-Pilot app takes into consideration the roads that are prohibited for trucks. Before a trip, this easy-to-use app asks a truck driver the weight as well as the dimensions of his/her truck. If a road is off limits to the truck's weight and dimensions, the driver is routed to a safer route, evading costly fines. The Co-pilot app also gives truck drivers tips on truck specific rest areas, CAT scales, and weigh stations. The user reviews allow truck drivers to know which stops to avoid. What's more? The built-in trip planner allows truck drivers to plan out an entire route beforehand. This application is available on both Android and iOS devices. Technology is vital in giving truck drivers the crucial tools needed to transport commodities to different locations without any unnecessary delays. While there are uncountable mobile applications that can be used to stay in touch with family and friends while on the road, the 3 apps discussed on this page are ideal in helping truck drivers move from one point to another as efficiently as possible. By knowing the best stops, cheaper fueling stations, and avoiding traffic, truck drivers can not only cut costs but also remain productive. Just download, install, and ensure you use these apps on your next trip....