5 Requirements Converting Freight Processes to Digital

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal showcased how digital friendly freight start-ups are challenging global freight giants – the giant’s response – we’re already doing that.

Both digital start-ups and freight giants are challenging you, too, if you are a small freight provider.

How can you compete?

You lack the financial resources of the giants to host hack-a-thons or to buy a small tech company.

You lack the manpower to staff digital exploratory teams or purchase new digital systems in the hopes that they work.

You don’t have deep pocketed venture capital financing you.

Seems hopeless, but it is not.

In fact, you may just have an advantage you are not exploiting.

Your customer relationships.

Small firms have closer relationships with their customers because each one is important to their survival.

To convert these relationships to digital capability in a careful, but purposeful way, you need to do 5 things:

  1. Determine what your customers really need that digital can do better than your current manual processes. Surveys, direct calls to those who interface with you, and visits to important customers can get you the information you need.
  2. Based on the data, choose the top area that you can both convert to digital and that will provide your customers with the greatest benefit. Allow time for the involved team to do research on tech solutions and what your competition is planning/has put in place.
  3. Develop a strategy and timetable for getting the digital tech in place and running smoothly.
  4. Go back out to your customers throughout the process as well as at the end. Ask how they like working with the Beta and finished product. This will not only keep you top of mind as a freight provider that cares about their company’s well-being; it also provides you with real feedback you can act on to make even greater improvements.
  5. Now repeat your success with the next item on your digital strategy list.


About the author: Cynthia Kalina-Kaminsky with Process & Strategy consults with and provides training for organizations eager to increase their competitive value by helping enable growth, align performance, make and move product (even when the product is electrons).


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