Leveling Up Customer Service with Real-time Supply Chain Visibility
Committed to delivering an unmatched customer experience, Dublin, OH-based EASE Logistics provides freight management services to the automotive, food and beverage, consumer packaged goods, and health and beauty industries across the U.S, Canada, and Mexico. The award-winning third-party logistics service provider (3PL) replaced traditional track-and-trace processes with the automated Descartes MacroPoint™ real-time supply chain visibility software —boosting productivity, driving greater operational and cost efficiencies, and building customer and carrier loyalty.
The Challenge: Lack of Visibility Inhibits Responsiveness
EASE Logistics’ unique service model is built on speed and communication: responses to customer email or phone enquiries delivered within two minutes; a 15-minute quote threshold; and 15-minute follow-up. With 500K+ emails, 18,000+ calls, and 1,000+ scheduled loads each week, coupled with rapid business growth over the past six years, EASE could no longer rely on inefficient and cumbersome manual track-and-trace processes to keep customers informed of shipment location and status. The 3PL needed an easy-to-use, automated freight visibility solution to improve delivery performance, increase operational efficiency, and strengthen customer and carrier relationships.
“We changed the third-party logistics narrative by creating an unrivaled customer experience with rapid response times and proactive service. Descartes MacroPoint underpins this customer-focused 24/7/365 service model by providing critical shipment data, including real-time tracking across arrivals and departures at pick-up and destination locations, and in-transit status updates backed by concrete GPS-based positioning. It’s been a game changer!”-- Brett Stewart, Business Development Director, EASE Logistics
The Solution: Real-time Load-tracking Technology
EASE Logistics’ customers count on the 3PL for unmatched visibility, reliability, and dependability, delivered via a highly responsive, personalized 24/7/365 service model. In 2015, in a move to eliminate time-consuming manual track-and-trace practices that were compromising the company’s ability to provide proactive customer service, EASE implemented the Descartes MacroPoint real-time supply chain visibility software, seamlessly integrated with its McLeod Software® transportation management system (TMS).
“We basically had no visibility. We were doing manual check calls or using the carrier website, if they even had one. There’s nothing worse than getting a call from a customer and finding out the truck broke down two hours ago,” said Brett Stewart, Business Development Director at EASE Logistics.
Using Descartes MacroPoint, EASE estimates that it has saved 60-70% of the time spent previously manually tracking via phone calls. Stewart elaborates, “On average, we send 10 updates per load. The system saves us 10 minutes per call, which translates into saving 1.5 hours per load.” It’s a big gain in higher value productive time for the company.
With real-time tracking and ETAs across all borders and loads, EASE is able to provide its customers with timely, accurate shipment updates as frequently as every 10 minutes, while managing exceptions swiftly and effectively.
“We have high-profile customers that rely on us for fast, on-time delivery of their loads. At the onset of the pandemic, when groceries and PPE were in high demand and supply chain disruptions were wreaking havoc with the flow of goods, delivery performance became even more critical for many of our customers,” said Stewart. “Descartes MacroPoint, tied to our McLeod TMS, gives us full visibility into shipment location and status so we can contact the customer the moment something happens to a load and provide them with a solution.”
Descartes MacroPoint connects to the thousands of trucks in EASE’s carrier network through integration with on-board electronic logging devices (ELDs), TMS solutions, and GPS-enabled smartphone applications such as Descartes MacroPoint™ for Truckers. Among the shipments tracked using Descartes MacroPoint, EASE puts carrier compliance with the solution at 84%, one of the higher rates among users of the solution! The Results
Exceptional Customer Service
The Descartes MacroPoint visibility platform is integral to EASE’s personalized and responsive (two minutes!) service model, providing accurate, real-time load data to improve performance, communication, and coordination for all stakeholders.
Bottom Line Boost
Descartes MacroPoint eliminates the need for labor-intensive and time-consuming manual check calls to ascertain freight location and status. Instead, staff is freed up to focus on booking new loads to generate revenue and drive growth.
Heightened Delivery Performance
With real-time freight location and status data, EASE can take proactive, corrective action to minimize disruptions in the supply chain and ensure the reliable delivery of loads. When delays occur, EASE can alert customers promptly to help them better plan their operations.
EASE simplified its workflow and streamlined transportation operations by replacing manual check calls with real-time tracking and automated alerts, helping the 3PL efficiently and smoothly move 34,000+ loads in 2020 despite pandemic-related supply chain disruptions.