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- Eric Johnson
The less-than-truckload market has been the big beneficiary of pandemic-based shifts in consumer behavior, but its robustness expands beyond our insatiable hunger for e-commerce and home delivery. With the market seeing an overflow from truckload and parcel, the question that lies ahead for shippers in the space is: How will LTL carriers and brokers cater to a new level of baseline demand? Technology certainly must play a role. In the last few years, a number of technologies aimed at empowering LTL carriers and brokers have emerged. The breadth of providers trails that seen in the truckload space — the truckload market is far bigger, but LTL is also more complex. This session will explore the extent to which technology is helping the market cope with demand and complexity, including empowering LTL carriers to improve their interfaces with shippers and brokers, and new models that bridge the gaps between modes.
It’s a cliché at this point, but the US truckload market is highly fragmented and utterly reliant on small fleets and independent drivers. As demand exploded in 2021, that only attracted more small carriers to the market. But as the market softens in 2022, there’s a looming question: Will this year be different, and what role will a cohort of technology providers focused on the long tail of truckload carriers play in making these small carriers more viable? These vendors not only enable small carriers to make their back office, dispatching, and customer-facing operations more efficient, but they also bring structure and visibility to small carriers, ultimately enabling shippers to get access to more capacity. In this session, a trio of technology providers for small carriers will discuss how this will shake out in 2022 and beyond.