NewsPodcastWHAT THE TRUCK?!?

Ascent puts itself in carriers’ shoes

Strong relationships and communication help improve business

The foundation of any relationship should be built on trust and communication and the same can apply to business in any industry. 

In order for freight operations to run smoothly, the relationship between carriers and shippers should embody total trust and constant communication. When operating with these partnership principles, the outcome will be continual improvement, creating efficiency and elevated customer service — thus promoting growth for all parties involved. At Ascent, our partnership with our carriers is paramount. 

“To us, carrier relationships mean everything,” said Sharon Harding, Director of Provider Development at Ascent. “[Our customers’ freight] is expensive and needs to be moved today, so the more relationships we have with providers and the more trust we have in them — it really is priceless.”

Ascent is a third-party logistics company that manages ground expedites and air charters for its customers. Ascent also specializes in international forwarding, customs brokerage, domestic brokerage and managed freight offerings. With more than $2 billion in revenue and a team of over 1,000 industry experts across North America, Ascent strives to solve supply chain challenges for its customers worldwide.

The relationship Ascent has with its carriers is pivotal to being the solution for its customers. To continue to grow as a company, Harding believes that it is necessary to place yourself in the carrier’s position.

“We literally put ourselves in their shoes. We go to their facilities, we learn their dispatch, we learn the teams they have and we learn how they do their business so we can integrate what we do, [including our portal], in order for us all to be successful in the end,” Harding said.

Ascent’s portal, PEAK, is a competitive freight marketplace that houses all needed information for customers and carriers alike, including a fully customizable dashboard. PEAK was designed to enable all users to further digitize and optimize their global supply chains.

Upon integration into the portal, Ascent trains and educates providers to use Ascent’s technology, helping to avoid any unnecessary bottlenecks down the road — something Harding believes further grows trust.

Many Ascent customers have become fully integrated with the PEAK platform, in addition to  most carriers. This competitive freight marketplace allows Ascent’s customers to put their freight needs into the system for carriers to bid directly. As a result, customers have visibility to carrier evaluations, alongside pick-up and delivery timings and quotes, streamlining the awards process for both sides.

“The less that [carriers] can do hands-on, day to day, the more chances they have to bid and win more shipments,” Harding said. 

Furthermore, the partnership between Ascent and its carriers, the training, emphasis on communication and mutual trust ensures a complete understanding of all customer requirements, leading to fair evaluations, which carriers can take pride in achieving. Providers also have 100% assurance, knowing they have an open line of communication with the Ascent team at all times.

Harding thinks this is the best way to mitigate unneeded stress.

“We want to put that extra step forward to ensure that everyone playing with us is playing on our team,” Harding said. “All of us in the trucking world make such a huge impact across the globe — not just in the states — so if we’re not communicating with each other, what do we have? If you think you’re done communicating, communicate some more.”

Britni Chisenall

Britni Chisenall is a sponsored content writer for FreightWaves. She lives in Ooltewah, TN with her husband, Garrett and her cat, Lily. Britni is a graduate of Dalton State College.