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F3 keynote: Fragmentation among biggest challenges in supply chain

J.B. Hunt Chief Information Officer Stuart Scott says carriers have revolutionary technology transforming the industry

With more than 3 million trucks on the road, millions of shippers and hundreds of load boards, the freight industry faces a key challenge in the form of fragmentation, says Stuart Scott, chief information officer and executive vice president for J.B. Hunt Transport Services.

“We have technology and data sitting in all kinds of silos and ERP and TMS systems that are all isolated to themselves,” Scott said on Tuesday as the keynote industry speaker for FreightWaves’ F3 Virtual Experience.

“Fragmentation of the assets in our industry, of the demand that we have for moving freight, and where that data sits housed and isolated, is really what we need to attack with technology.”

F3 runs Tuesday through Thursday and includes keynote speakers, fireside chats, live interviews, product demos and award presentations.

Watch: J.B. Hunt’s Stuart Scott

Scott joined J.B. Hunt in 2016, bringing more than 30 years of experience leading data and technology initiatives for multiple companies in a variety of industries. At J.B. Hunt, Scott leads the engineering and technology segments.

He said supply chain disruption is occurring “everywhere” in the multi-trillion global freight industry, which includes about $300 billion of waste.

“That’s just been exaggerated with all the supply chain constraints that we have with ports being congested, labor shortages, driver shortages and everything that we’re all dealing with as consumers every day,” Scott said. “That’s why the future of tech in the freight industry is now — to really change the game, it really comes from several technologies and industry capabilities that are happening now.”

Scott said technology such as intelligent assets, mobile computing/smartphones, the cloud, and automation/artificial intelligence are revolutionizing the freight industry through visibility, connected ecosystem and data science.

“The data and the scale at which we can process trillions of data points at a time, running through data science models, that’s going to really add to this capability — with visibility to a connected ecosystem. Applying data science is really going to revolutionize our entire industry and really make freight automated,” Scott said. “The future of freight is now and the future of freight is automated.”

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Noi Mahoney

Noi Mahoney is a Texas-based journalist who covers cross-border trade, logistics and supply chains for FreightWaves. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in English in 1998. Mahoney has more than 20 years experience as a journalist, working for newspapers in Florida, Maryland and Texas. Contact