Carrier Logistics, Inc.

Trucking with CLI

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 News, Products & Tips

April 2005 

in this issue

·  User Group Meeting a Success

·  Five Reasons to Quantify the Value of Your Technology Investment

·  Welcome New Customer: DHL

·  Success Stories

·  Personnel News

·  Calendar of Events

 

Dear Ken,

Welcome to the April 2005 CLI newsletter. This issue's feature story is a recap of the User Group Meeting held in Tarrytown, NY last month. The well-attended program was a huge success bringing together CLI customers for two days of learning, networking and idea exchanging. Please read the article for a full summary.

We're also introducing a new section to the newsletter entitled, "Success Stories." In this issue we are highlighting CLI customer Billings Freight Systems and its highly successful use of the web as a customer service tool. Please read the article for ideas on better utilizing your own website as a customer service vehicle. If you would like to see your company featured in this section of the newsletter, please e-mail CLI with your story. We may feature it in a future "Success Stories" article.

This spring issue also has stories on one of CLI's newest clients, DHL Canada, Personnel News, and an important article on "Measuring the ROI of your Technology." Written by Michael D. DuVall, a principal at Charter Consulting, this article highlights the critical importance of using measuring tools to determine the value of your technology investment. We hope that you find the information valuable.

Thank you again for reading. Enjoy the issue.

User Group Meeting a Success

Customers from Companies Large and Small Meet, Mingle and Learn

The recent CLI User Group Meeting was two days of learning, networking and idea sharing. The event, held at the Doubletree Hotel in Tarrytown, NY, covered a wide range of topics related to CLI's FACTS™ system. There were general sessions, panel discussions, roundtables and breakout focus sessions. Topics ranged from Route Engineering to Business Analysis to Billing Issues and everything in between. The sessions, led by a combination of CLI trainers and outside speakers, were well received by those in attendance.

"I was pleased with the whole event," said Terry Olsen, vice president of Operations at Standard Forwarding. "It was well worth the trip."

A highlight of the program was the roundtable discussions, which provided a lively interchange between participants on a variety of issues. Many of the participants noted the value of being able to network with other system users, trading ideas and solutions. "The opportunity to meet and share ideas with other CLI customers and CLI staff is priceless," said Jared Harris, a systems analyst for Rist Transport, d.b.a. Howards Express. This sentiment was echoed by others at the program who also enjoyed meeting face to face with CLI staff whom they've been working with for years.

CLI would like to thank all of the participants who took time out to attend the free event. We look forward to hosting another User Group Meeting next spring. Look for future newsletters for dates and location. If you would like to access the PowerPoint presentations from the event, they are available in the Transport Forum on the CLI website under the "2005 User Group" folder.

Five Reasons to Quantify the Value of Your Technology Investment

Measuring the return on investment (ROI) of technology expenditures has become increasingly critical for all types and sizes of companies. In a 2001 InformationWeek study, 80 percent of the respondents indicated that the importance of measuring the ROI of technology investments had increased from the previous year. It is of particular importance in the transportation industry, where margins tend to be slim. Every dollar must be accounted for and technology investments can be a difficult sell.

With this in mind, I believe there are five reasons to quantify value. Determining the ROI of your technology investment improves:

1. Decision Making - It allows you to identify the best investments
2. Communication - One can clearly articulate the value of an investment
3. Value - The company can maximize the value of an investment
4. Budget Planning - It allows you to build projections into the company plan
5. Accountability - You can identify the value drivers and track them

ROI, the ratio of net benefits to total investment cost, is the most traditional value measure, but there are other techniques to consider. Net Present Value (NPV) accounts for the time value of money by stating future net benefits in today's dollar terms. Internal Rate of Return (IRR) provides the predicted yield of an investment. Finally, Payback Period estimates the time at which the project achieves breakeven. Each of these measures provides a different perspective of an investment's viability.

Use multiple measures to provide the most comprehensive view of a technology investment's viability. However, don't get bogged down by the various evaluation measures, as no matter which measurement you choose, the important thing is to make the effort to measure. If not, you may just discover the high cost of NOT investing in your technology.

This article was adapted from a presentation by Michael DuVall, Principal, Charter Consulting at the recent TSMA Conference in Orlando, FL. Charter Consulting provides management consulting services for companies in transportation and other industries.

You can visit Charter Consulting's website by clicking here. »

 

Welcome New Customer: DHL

DHL Express Canada, a leading Canadian package delivery carrier, has chosen the FACTS™ highway freight operations management system. The highway system provides full control of manifesting, trip management, driver settlements, equipment control and fuel tax reporting. Like all FACTS systems, it provides a complete set of operations reports and other management tools.

Using the new system, DHL expects to achieve more precise control of operations and administration by locating missing trailers, developing accurate costing per load or per trip, creating performance reports (scheduled vs. actual times at selected locations, planned vs. actual trip times, etc.) and by matching accounts payable to actual trips to avoid paying for trips not made.

"I have known of CLI's reputation in the transportation industry for years," said Carl Dinis, national linehaul director. "Their FACTS highway application is an excellent fit for our operation, making our decision to go with CLI an easy one."

DHL is a global market leader in the international package express, logistics and delivery industry, providing innovative and customized solutions from a single source. The company has 160,000 employees and an international network that links more than 220 countries and territories worldwide.

Welcome DHL.

DHL Canada »

 

Success Stories

Billings Transportation Group
Customers Happy

Given a choice, customers at Billings Transportation Group, Inc., a North Carolina-based carrier, much prefer tracing shipments and determining rates by clicking on a website as opposed to using the phone. In fact, Billings saw a sharp rise in website hits in the second half of 2004 following the installation of FACTS™.

"As soon as the system was up and running," says Wayne Bersch, vice president, Operations at Billings, "we noticed an uptick in website use. We began a study of website usage during a seven-week period, from mid-July to early September."

Visits to the site were up to 11,000, an average of 212 a day. More than half of visitors, 6,500, looked at multiple pages. Typically, visits lasted nine minutes. Many visitors downloaded documents, and 25 percent came back to the site for second and third visits.

A second study conducted for 13 weeks from October through December 2004 showed an even busier site. Hits almost doubled to 652,000. Site visits rose to 18,700, and daily visits jumped to 215. Average time per visit rose to ten minutes.

"Three-fourths of this growth in traffic," says Bersch, "is attributable to customer searches using the FACTS system." Trips to the site beyond the home page probably replace phone calls. For example, the rates page is the second busiest on the site.

Each visitor who returns to the site a second or third time, about one out of four, is an example of a shipment trace online instead of by phone.

"The advantage to Billings," Bersch adds, "is that employees get more work done since they no longer have to answer customers seeking rates and shipment traces. And customers like the immediate answers."

Efficient employees and happy customers...Sounds like a success story to us.

Click here to visit the Billings website. »

 

Personnel News

CLI welcomes its newest employee, Peter Liu. Peter will be working with CLI customers to define needs for enhancements and changes to their systems. Peter has been active in the trucking industry since 1984 when he was involved in providing customer service for LTL packages. After that he developed a software package for LTL. Peter was most recently at Salson Logistics, Inc. where he was vice president of Information Technology. The combination of Peter's extensive background and his past job responsibilities makes him a great asset to and resource for CLI customers. Please join us in welcoming Peter to the company.

And from personnel to personal, Kevin Linardic and his wife Amy welcomed a son, Grant Thomas, into their family on March 30th. Congratulations Kevin and Amy.

 

Calendar of Events

Conference Close-Up: We're often asked about programs for Finance and Accounting professionals in the transportation industry. Please note that the National Accounting & Finance Council (NAFC) of the ATA will be holding their annual program for financial professionals on June 26 - 28 in Nashville. Click on the link below for program details.

Date

Program

Location

April 28 - 30

33rd North American Truck Show

Boston, MA

April 29 - 30

Quebec Trucking Association 54th Annual Convention

Montreal, QC

May 8 - 11

Canadian Transportation Research Forum 39th Annual Conference

Hamilton, ON

June 22 - 24

SMC³ 50th Annual Summer Meeting

Savannah, GA

June 26 - 28

NAFC 2005 Meeting

Nashville, TN

Sept. 28 - 30

CLI Annual Leadership Forum

Tarrytown, NY

Oct. 2 - 5

ATA Safety & Loss Prevention Annual Conference

Miami, FL

Oct. 15 - 19

2005 ATA Management Conference & Exhibition

Boston, MA

 

Quick Links

 

     email: kweinberg@carrierlogistics.com
     voice: 914-332-0300
     web: http://www.carrierlogistics.com

 

 

Carrier Logistics Inc. · 220 White Plains Road · Tarrytown · NY · 10591