Online freight logistics start-up Shipwell has announced the introduction of its load board within its cloud-based freight management platform. Shippers and 3PLs on the Shipwell platform can now access their own load boards – which can either be company-specific or the overall private Shipwell load board.
The system is bankable, as the carriers registered on the load boards are thoroughly vetted, have their insurance monitored, are given individual scores that need to be maintained above a certain value, and must be connected either with their electronic logging device (ELD) or through the mobile application at all times.
“The shippers have access to an automated platform that runs on machine learning and provides real-time visibility into freight operations. Shippers will be provided with the best carrier options that they can bid and book instantly,” said Jason Traff, co-founder and president of Shipwell. “I think the real difference is us focusing on how to add authentic value to transportation.”
That said, load boards are not an innovation in itself, as they have existed in the industry for several decades now. Transportation in the U.S. predominantly goes directly from the shipper to the carrier, but about 20 percent of the load goes through the spot market, which is generally associated with a load board. Shipwell’s private load board is different because it targets the remaining 80 percent and seeks to seamlessly transition loads from shippers to carriers.
“Through Shipwell’s load board, shippers get connections to better carriers, and have better visibility through connected ELDs and the mobile application. They also have lower costs associated with shipping, because they now have a broader reach predominantly within their own network,” said Traff. “This apart, they also get technology like automation and machine learning that only really exists for the elite companies in the space.”
Shipwell uses a proprietary algorithm that monitors over 700 different shipment data touch points – both for shippers and carriers. With regard to shippers, the company looks at the origin and destination of loads, the time it takes for the carrier to get loaded at the shipper’s facility, the issues surrounding detention and dwell times, and several similar parameters. This helps Shipwell provide a score around a facility to help carriers manage their expectations.
“On the carrier side, Shipwell monitors everything concerning the standard checks around insurance, incident reports for the carrier, and also real-time information coming in from the ELD present in the cab. We are connected with the top five ELD manufacturers in the U.S., and have connections with over a dozen altogether,” said Traff.
For carriers that participate in the load boards, they are expected to be connected with the platform through their ELDs. This allows Shipwell to coordinate information with the shippers, and they can also use the native iOS and mobile applications for better messaging and document uploads. Over time, these connections help Shipwell get an imprint of where a carrier most likely wants to haul and how well they perform at the job. Machine learning algorithms use this information to create scores that are relayed to shippers who see the scores before they look to bid for capacity.
“At Shipwell, we are always focused on creating the next generation of automation within transportation. This is a step towards addressing all the common pain points we hear on real-time visibility, efficient pricing, shippers connecting to better carriers, and carriers who want better connections with shippers,” said Traff. “The idea is to provide people with the most advanced technology, and give a very approachable way for them to have access to all that at their fingertips.