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Devin Partida is a prolific writer about crypto, open banking and fintech for publications like Worth, Due, Yahoo! Finance and Entrepreneur.
The fintech industry is developing many supply chain tools that should make logistics more efficient and overcome some persistent challenges. Here are six specific ways fintech products are emerging as game-changers in logistics.
1. Making Lumper Payments More Efficient
Logistics carriers pay lumper services to unload their goods upon arrival at a destination. However, dealing with those third-party transactions can cause administrative headaches for drivers, including lost receipts.
Adding to the hassle is that lumper payments are often check and cash transactions authorized with codes sent to drivers.
A company called Capstone Logistics has several plans to streamline lumper payment methods and reduce the associated issues. For example, a direct bill option allows shippers to prepay, freeing drivers from worrying about it on arrival. The business also provides drivers with a touchless payment system that gives them electronic receipts.
2. Expediting Roadside Assistance Transactions
When a logistics professional experiences vehicular trouble, they depend on roadside assistance providers to get them to the nearest service station. However, the process can get cumbersome when it’s time to pay.
RoadSync is a company that wants to reduce the manual processes that often cause inefficiency. Its mobile app texts digital invoices to drivers and allows them to pay with several methods, including a fleet check.
Once RoadSync receives the funds, it completes the transaction for the provider. That way, a participating truck-servicing facility gets the money quickly, helping it stay profitable.
3. Increasing Logistics Cost Visibility
Providing timely data that steers decision-making is a key part of making a logistics app industry professionals want to use. That’s because increased visibility is a primary driver in effectively reducing overall logistics costs. Although it’s not possible to predict all disruptions, real-time, comprehensive data can help people mitigate issues more quickly.
The makers of a mobile logistics management app called LogiScope claim it produces an average 12%-15% reduction in costs. The tool brings all the pertinent data into one interface, allowing people to access it at any time and get useful information to share their choices.
When logistics leaders can get cloud-stored data in seconds from their mobile phones, it’s easier for them to decide when to hire more employees, whether a warehouse can meet a potential client’s request and more. That concrete and accessible information substantially minimizes their reliance on guesswork and instinct.
4. Accelerating Truck Driver Payments
Everyone appreciates getting paid promptly. However, that’s simply not an option for many professional truck drivers. Statistics show it often takes 45 days from the delivery date for them to see their checks. Fintech apps can change that by spurring progress past legacy payment systems and methods.
One of them is CloudTrucks. It gathers electronic documents associated with a logistics job, then issues the driver a direct deposit payment mere hours after the relevant paperwork is processed and verified.
The app also has scheduling and load-booking features that help trucking professionals make the most of their time on the road. When they can book jobs across several days, it’s easier to plan where they travel and ensure they’ll make that time behind the wheel as profitable as possible.
5. Streamlining Weigh Station Transactions
When truckers pull up to weigh stations with too much cargo, they must pay fees, usually set at a particular dollar amount per pound. Most modern weigh stations allow drivers to pass through them without ever leaving their vehicles. Now, the Weigh My Truck app lets them manage payments without getting out, as well.
The drivers get the weights displayed through a mobile app that also allows them to make necessary payments. The app can send a locked PDF file of the scale ticket to any email address specified by the user, too.
The app’s other capabilities include the option to save billing options or see historical weigh station data. That allows drivers to save time and track trends.
6. Reducing Billing and Payment Delays
Any process that causes billing or payment hold-ups can create ripple effects through the supply chain. Such slowdowns often occur due to the sheer amount of paperwork associated with each in-transit load moving through the supply chain.
That’s one of the reasons logistics professionals are increasingly interested in robotic process automation (RPA). It allows setting rules, so smart programs can carry out repeated tasks without ongoing human intervention. One market leader in RPA technology raised $977 million in a single year, showing that investors see promise in the innovation.
Speeding up time-consuming logistics processes could have positive outcomes across the supply chain. That’s why Transflo introduced a document automation suite that helps manage and process paperwork. A document-capture feature extracts pertinent details from documents while drivers are on the road.
They can activate it while at any of the 2,500 participating truck stop locations or at any time through a mobile app. Bringing automation to logistics documents cuts billing delays, so people get paid for services rendered faster.
Fintech and Logistics: A Promising Pairing
The logistics industry is the backbone of today’s economy, taking almost total responsibility for getting goods to their destinations on time. Technology can help companies remain profitable and competitive while reducing errors and other potentially costly outcomes.