“In order to win bids this season, brokers and carriers will need to prove their technological prowess. Shippers have high expectations for carriers and meeting those expectations without an ample suite of modern solutions is no longer possible.”
Freightwaves goes on to say that brokers need to demonstrate usage of the most up-to-date technology to comply with their scorecard. All valid points about the importance of technology for satisfying shippers . But what about the importance of technology for brokers themselves?
Technology shouldn’t be deployed for the sake of checking a box for shippers. Rather, an RFP strategy for brokers should be centered around technology that helps them optimize and plan lanes and find the best fits for that particular broker’s network. For example, pre-bid analysis of my network cross-referenced against the full set of RFP lanes can direct me towards the lanes I need and want to keep trucks moving. More importantly, it can weed out the lanes I don’t want and that don’t fit.
What steps can brokers take in advance to improve their success rates and profitability for upcoming RFPs?
· Know your strengths: know the markets and lanes that are strengths within your network. Know where you can create full trips and continuous moves.
· Know your weaknesses: know the lanes to avoid due to lack of density and coverage. You can’t cover every market. Pick your bets: know where to double down aggressively, and where to walk away.
· Don’t rely on gut instinct: use data and predictive analytics to guide your decisions and analysis. We often have misconceptions about our network or specific markets. Just because Houston was a big winner for me in 2019 doesn’t mean it still is. Conditions change. Let the data direct you.
If you don’t have a way of seeing, analyzing and predicting what your network actually looks like to conduct your pre-bid RFP, SemiCab can help. SemiCab extends the value of a brokers’ TMS systems by analyzing their supply and demand network, and predicting where the greatest opportunities exist to keep trucks moving and minimize empty miles. We’ve used this technology internally for three years to improve efficiency and performance at SemiCab. We’re now making the technology available to brokers as an easy to use and deploy extension of their TMS.