The predictive supply chain visibility platform FourKites has unveiled a scalable GPS solution called Partner Hub that it says is an industry first.
FourKites says Partner Hub addresses brokers' and carriers' issues and provides them functionalities that usher in transparency and advanced security for data from individual trucking operations.
Since the enforcement of the electronic logging device (ELD) mandate — implemented in stages beginning in December 2017 — there has been pushback against the regulation within the trucking sector because of its restrictions on the way truckers work and concerns over driver privacy. Authorities have remained steadfast, arguing that the ELD mandate helps reduce driver fatigue, improve customer service and lower shipping costs.
That said, privacy and data security have remained a lingering concern. Though major telecom operators halted services on cellphone-based location tracking, drivers continued to be remotely tracked through applications built into their smartphones. Once applications gather trucking data, drivers and carriers were often left with no control over the people that had access to their personal trucking data.
"FourKites is committed to giving carriers full control over their data and enabling them to benefit materially from real-time freight logistics data — all while maintaining the transparency, security and control that they need and expect," said Mathew Elenjickal, the CEO of FourKites.
Partner Hub creates tailor-made tools for brokers, carriers and shippers, with carriers retaining full control over their data and having the ability to share data with the stakeholders that make sense to them. From its end, FourKites will ensure that it never shares ELD credentials with brokers or shippers. The company also traces shipments rather than tracking trucks, thus making sure the stakeholders within the trucking value chain only get data on shipment origin and delivery times and not private carrier data.
"As ELDs have become the industry standard, the need to connect to them effortlessly and with a high degree of trust has become a necessity," said David Broering, president of North American non-asset solutions at NFI. "FourKites' Partner Hub is the tool we've been waiting for to help quickly onboard new carriers at the ELD level, sparing their drivers the effort and pain associated with app-based tracking."
On a personal level, users within the FourKites platform will have high visibility into operations. For instance, carriers and drivers can access data on dwell times, which can help optimize hauling schedules. Brokers can use the platform to save time on hitherto manual check calls and emails as they can now spot shipment movements in real time on the FourKites' dashboard.
"FourKites gives us the ability to manage ELD onboarding in a way that provides the security our carrier base is looking for," said George Henry, senior vice president of logistics at USA Truck Inc. "Just as important, it gives value back to the carrier and incentivizes them to do more business with us. It's a win for everyone."