Can digitization in trucking slow down the spread of Coronavirus?

March 17, 2020

Our hearts and thoughts go out to the people who have been affected by this unprecedented event, which the World Health Organization declared a pandemic. We appreciate the healthcare workers, local communities, volunteers, biotech and pharma companies as well as the governments around the world who are on the front lines working to contain the Coronavirus. Please know that we are monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely and have precautions in place to ensure our employees stay healthy so that we can continue to deliver the solutions you need to power your business.

In this climate, we know software may not be your first thought, but we want you to know the safety of our employees and our customers is our top priority. We recognize that the COVID-19 virus has required all of us to be more mindful as we go through our regular activities as well as come up with creative ways that allow us to remain productive to keep our businesses going so that our employees can continue to earn an income to support their families. 

Trucking is the backbone of America, and now more than ever we need precious supplies at hospitals, pharmacies, clinics, big block stores, supermarkets, and local shops… Americans and our cross border neighbors depend on trucking to connect buyers with suppliers so we can live, operate our businesses, and drive our economy. The COVID-19 coronavirus is slowing down some businesses and industries temporarily, but it shouldn't be for trucking - our nation depends on it. Although there is quite a bit of fear and uncertainty, trucking is being called on in an even larger way to move supplies across our country. 

The freight still has to move. However, physically passing documents back and forth not only slows down the time between delivery and billing, but also touches many hands, opening up the doors for spreading germs. Right now, it has never been a more important time to consider going paperless. In the past few weeks, we've actually seen a much larger increase in requests from fleets looking for creative ways to increase digitization to keep their fleet moving and healthy.

From our perspective, it was always clear how effective what we are building can be used to speed cash flow, but it has been fascinating to discover new benefits during this time and we wanted to share.

  1. We've heard from some fleets who are preparing for truck stops to be closed. Even if they continue to operate, the communal fax machines are germ traps. Mobile capture not only allows for fleets to stay away from these public places, but ensures your drivers can complete their work from inside their cab or house.
  2. We're seeing fleets ask for more digital dispatch solutions. This reduces the amount of time drivers need to come inside the terminal, interacting with the team, and receiving a stack of paperwork to start their day. The ability to push information from the dispatch system to the palm of the drivers hand could eliminate many of those physical interactions.
  3. Other fleets are seeking new ways to eliminate paperwork altogether. Still a ways away from getting rid of that POD, but there are many other documents that may be more internal to the fleet's operation. Looking through the data from our support calls, the DVIR is the most frequently discussed. Being a document that must be viewed and modified by many parties, those interchanges don't need to be on physical paper or through physical contact.
  4. Many of our customers appreciate the document management capabilities that happen automatically as drivers snap pictures in the field. The system retrieves these documents, organizes them, and integrates them with existing software so you can invoice right aways - all without having to share a piece of paper. 
  5. Moving beyond document capturing, some fleets are embracing paper elimination by creating customized workflows from DVIRs, trip sheets, accident reports, BOLs, etc that fit their unique fleet operations. They push data from their TMS so their drivers can focus on driving safely instead of shuffling between documents that need to be completed.
  6. Our cloud-based solution already connects drivers on the road to the back-office. But another benefit in times like these, Vector also enables those in the back-office to work remotely from the safe confines of their homes when required.

From our discussions with customers, we’ve escalated the features on our product roadmap that would allow for more remote collaboration and less paperwork. We decided to fast track these features to further support our customers safety. Additionally, we are offering free imaging integration and standard eDVIR workflows. We recognize that these are unsettling times and whether you are considering to go paperless now or in the future, we want you to know that your safety and well being are our first priority.

Contact our team today to see how you can keep your team and partners safe by digitizing your workflows.

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