April 25, 2023

The Power of Multi-Enterprise Business Networks in Transportation

The supply chain space has seen a lot of change in the past few decades, especially in the last three years. The ability to collaborate across networks is essential for business survival, which is why understanding and optimizing the use of multi-enterprise business networks is critical. In this post, we’ll get into the nitty gritty of multi-enterprise business networks and explore how you can use SemiCab’s Collaborative Transportation Platform, a multi-enterprise collaboration platform, to re-engineer fulfillment.

What are Multi-Enterprise Business Networks?

Also known as a multi-enterprise operating network, multi-enterprise business networks are B2B (business to business) ecosystems that bring multiple parties together, in real-time, through a shared data set. The idea is to facilitate how businesses interact with each other by making collaboration seamless, so that the end customer has a better experience, while the entire process is optimized for the utmost efficiency.

The only way a network like this works is by having a common language, that’s where data comes into play. Full data visibility allows for the connectivity needed to achieve high-level collaboration. The cleaner and more robust the data set, the better your chances are of achieving the much-coveted supply chain visibility we all strive for.

Many technology companies will have a specialized network they build with the needs of their niche market in mind, be it manufacturers, distribution, freight forwarding, global trade, retailers, transportation partners, air and ocean, customs brokers, and repair depots. As a customer of any one of those companies, one can have access to the entire network, vastly improving access and reach.

And while having access to these networks is of extreme value, it can be worthless if there’s no way to collaborate seamlessly. That’s where supply chain orchestration solutions can help, like SemiCab’s Collaborative Transportation Platform, which supplements TMSs by using carrier and shipper data to create highly efficient and reliable transportation.

Multi-enterprise Model - Value for Shippers

TMSs lack certain real-time execution data that shippers need to ensure customer delivery, this means the TMS must be supplemented. SemiCab provides a single lens across truckload transportation (private fleet, brokers, asset-based providers, etc), for real-time visibility paired with multi-party insights and analysis to drive optimal decisions across planning and execution -  enhancing and extending the Enterprise TMS. Our unique multi-enterprise transportation platform aggregates truckload transportation demand across customers (other shippers), optimizes it with supply from our carrier community, considers the specifications (equipment, weight, volume, location, HOS constraints, etc.), and creates highly efficient and reliable transportation, empowering shippers to:

  • Ensure customer delivery with confidence
  • Ensure inventory availability where it's needed
  • Ensure speed expectations of customers
  • Achieve sustainability goals
  • Avoid surge costs

Multi-enterprise Model - Value for Carriers

Every carrier works differently, but in many cases, they are focused on creating and fostering relationships with shippers who are a good match for their offerings. This means carriers spend a lot of time searching for, meeting with, and vetting different shippers to see if both can benefit from working together; an intensive and time-consuming process.

Maintaining profitability is difficult when a carrier is using multiple load boards and brokers to get shipments out. By working with a Collaborative Transportation Platform, they can dedicate some or all of their capacity, leaving the coordinating and load-tendering to the platform. Carriers can then focus on providing the trucks, scheduling the drivers, maintaining their equipment, and more importantly, growing their business. Carrier benefits include:

  • Optimal roundtrips in specific lanes
  • Ownership of entire regional networks
  • Eliminating the need for the spot market

Multi-enterprise Model - Value for the Ecosystem

The multi-enterprise model helps the entire transportation network thrive, not only in theory but in practice too. The National Digital Freight Exchange (NDFE) in India, which is powered by SemiCab, has been live for just over six months, and the benefits are undeniable.

Currently, more than 20 multinational companies representing multiple industry verticals, including manufacturing, consumer goods, food and beverage, and pharmaceuticals, have joined the exchange. These shippers benefit from, SemiCab’s predictive intelligence that not only projects but matches ideal assets to loads for every trip. The AI employed for this process frames the decision-making process, thereby allowing the system to do more than predict but also prescribe a specific action with how to execute it best. By using transportation data provided by the Unified Logistics Interface Platform (ULIP), which includes transporter, truck, and visibility data, the NDFE, powered by SemCab, is able to:

  • Provide live tracking for every load
  • Achieve real-time compliance from drivers, trucks, and transporters
  • Identify, create, and execute collaboration opportunities between transporters and shippers automatically without explicit coordination or change in processes.
  • Integrate with TMS systems for automated load tendering, visibility, and invoicing, as well as email, document, and platform bots for extracting information and automating repetitive tasks.

The multi-enterprise business model allows all players in the transportation space, carriers, shippers, and brokers alike, to reduce inefficiencies in their process. With Orchestrated Collaboration™, we can expect increased transportation capacity, improved asset utilization, reduced empty miles, lower logistics costs, and dependable visibility into the transportation network as a whole. In India, The digital freight initiative is projected to eliminate inefficiency in the truckload transportation industry through a 70% reduction in empty miles, a 35% improvement in on-time deliveries, and guaranteed 99% real-time visibility into the network. To learn more about how multi-enterprise business networks have a direct impact on your transportation, reach out for a demo.


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