“In the last ten years, the transportation and logistics industry has undergone a radical change. Logistics companies regardless of their size, are resorting to digitization for more effective operations, and better client servicing and are striving to become online freight forwarders.”
This is an interview with Andrea Martin, Conqueror’s FreightViewer coordinator who is in charge of training the agents on the use of Conqueror’s member-exclusive TMS. She is responsible for assisting them with any doubts regarding the use of the platform and helping the members get acquainted with the new features of the software. Before joining Conqueror, Andrea worked in customer service acquiring the necessary skills to solve client issues, and provide technical support, while gaining a wide range of knowledge in communication. Here, Andrea talks about her experience at Conqueror and how FreightViewer is helping the network members to advance in the path of digitization.
Q. Tell us a bit about your experience at Conqueror?
A. It’s been a few years now that I have been a part of the Conqueror team and my experience here has so far been very satisfying. I have a close bonding with my teammates with whom we work together solving problems and brainstorming the best ways to help our members solve any issues they might be facing. Moreover, working at Conqueror has taught me a lot about the advancement of digitization in the transportation and logistics industry and the urgent need for independent freight forwarders to digitize their operations.
Q. Tell us about your job. Do you find your everyday tasks interesting?
A. My everyday work is not only interesting, but it can also become very demanding at times. My most important task consists of assisting our members to make the best use of our online quote rate management software, FreightViewer. Every year during our Annual Meeting I sit together with our members to give them one-to-one demonstrations that help them to seamlessly use the software for instant quote generation and inform them about the other uses of the platform. My task also entails connecting with potential digital partners, interviewing experts from leading logistics tech firms, speaking at logistics trade shows, etc. Simply put, my task revolves around increasing the usability of our quote generation platform and helping members to take an important stride toward digitization.
Q. Could you explain to us a little bit more about FreightViewer?
A. FreightViewer is an exclusive-member transport management software Conqueror Freight Network has developed to offer a digital infrastructure allowing members to offer rates and services online. It also enhances the accuracy of the quotation while significantly reducing its processing time, from a number of days to less than a minute. To put it simply, it allows members to organize their rates with their local and transport charges on a single platform. Furthermore, it connects members in the network permitting them to carry out all quoting transactions throughout the same channel.
Q. What do you think are the advantages of FreightViewer?
A. The main advantage for Conqueror members is that FreightViewer will allow them to be at the cutting edge of technology and compete with the stalwarts in the industry by digitalizing a part of the business processes. FreightViewer enables agents to build a digital back office. By uploading rates into the system, they are able to quote in a few seconds, compare rates between different carriers, and filter under several attributes to obtain the most accurate quotation. Furthermore, FreightViewer users are not only speeding the quoting time but also creating an enormous open showcase 24/7 for clients and potential customers.
In addition, FreightViewer offers an accessible website through which members’ direct customers and partners out of the Network can check rates any time, any day. Moreover, each customer can be classified into different Client Categories with different mark-ups (profit margin), meaning members can personalize quotes for each customer. And all of these complex services are included in their membership fee, at no additional cost.
Q. Which are the new updates of FreightViewer?
A. Our aim is to develop a digital platform in which members exchange information online, eliminating all those time consuming tasks which can become tedious for freight forwarders. By charging FOB costs into FreightViewer users are selling them directly to partners and customers online. In other words, member’s rates will be one click away from partners in the Network and direct clients. This enables them to manage the great volume of requests in a very efficient way, providing instant feedback and improving customer experience.
FreightViewer enables companies to go online through a personalized website where their customers can register or log in to quote or send requests. All quotations sent through this website will immediately reach the freight forwarder who will answer the request. Additionally, all this information is automatically shared with clients throughout the website. Connecting both, freight forwarders and clients means a great improvement in transparency which is always appreciated by the clients.
Q. Why is it important for freight forwarding companies to digitize their operations in 2023?
A. In the last ten years, the transportation and logistics industry has undergone a radical change. Logistics companies, regardless of their size, are resorting to digitization for more effective operations, and better client servicing and are striving to become online freight forwarders. The work of freight forwarders encompasses several other efforts that address the simplification and automation of the job at hand. This includes several processes such as transforming the relationship with the clients, digitization of the quote generation and reservation process, and data transparency between suppliers and customers. Furthermore, it also involves cost reduction and most importantly a fresh look at the transportation and information management procedure.
The pandemic has brought a very important fact to our attention- Freight Forwarders need to digitalize. Over the last year, many new digital freight forwarders like FLEXPORT, FREIGHTOS, FREIGHTHUB, etc. have invested millions in digitization, so now there is no turning back, it’s not the future anymore, it’s the present. Simply put, now is the time for traditional freight forwarders to transform into digital freight forwarders to keep up with the new industry standards, retain their clients, and get new ones. We are one of the very few international freight forwarding networks to successfully cope with the technological changes while providing our members with the opportunity to compete with the largest multinationals.