“We are grateful to serve this vital and critical industry. Trucking and transportation companies are the heroes of the economy in 2020,” said Tom McLeod, President & CEO of McLeod Software in a company press release.
Because Star Distribution Systems, Inc. is synonymous with a high level of personalized service—and has been since our 1892 beginning—we were extremely careful when adding transportation management software in 2019. We needed to find something that would allow us to continue our renowned high level of personal interaction with our customers, vendors and team members while instantaneously providing all the information they need and increasing our efficiency.
We chose McLeod Software’s state-of-the-art Transportation Management System because it does all of that for us. It allows us to implement best practices and keep up our company standards across multiple aspects of the operation, and it integrates seamlessly with our Warehousing and Asset-based Trucking Division management systems.
“Our team has been molding the workflow and internal processes to best suit each customer’s specific needs for years,” said Bobby Tyson, Vice President of Operations of Star Transportation Logistics, Star’s truckload division. “We are happy to bolster our hands-on approach with the best available technology.”
What benefits does this bring to our customers?
Our team has set up and continually refreshes the McLeod software by adding up-to-date information about each of our shippers, receivers and partners. The information generated then gives customers:
- Real Time Tracking of all shipments, LTL and Truckload
- Rapid Alert Systems that provide instant feedback when pickups and deliveries are completed
- Online Billing and Proof of Delivery access
- Shared Industry Pricing and Performance Statistics that allow real-time market change to be realized and shared
McLeod’s Transportation Management System’s customizable tools give Star complete control of the data we record for each of our clients, allowing us to reinforce our company mantra of “Service First” and to continue growing our partnerships nationally without sacrificing the personal touch.
When we operate at maximum efficiency, that certainly benefits us, but it also helps our clients by giving us the following information and capabilities:
- Customized Workflow tailored by our team that simplifies our alignment with our customers’ critical specs
- Quick assessment and best possible routings for each shipment
- Real time tracking, allowing us to spend more time finding and communicating solutions proactively
- Driver Mobile Applications that facilitate drivers to send and receive real-time alerts at any hour
- Image Capture, which provides instant access to proof of delivery and OS&D reconciliation
“Our Transportation Management System keeps track of paperwork, orders that have been entered, time stamps on arrivals and departures and product details if there is a shortage or damage of any type,” said Tyson. “It keeps track of day-to-day communications between us and customers regarding quotes and pricing. It’s a full-scale business management software tailored to our industry that buys us a few minutes every day.”
Whereas Star personnel used to call customers to tell them a shipment arrived, now the software system pings them. McLeod’s program responds to parameters set by Star, such as a customer’s need for only evening pickups because the plant is in production during the day. It reminds drivers that they must wear safety glasses when they go into one facility and steel-toed boots when they enter another. And that they must weigh their truck after loading and again after the shipment is delivered because a certain client requires reporting of the load’s exact weight. These automatic alerts prepare our team to meet our customers’ requests, and our attentiveness reduces or eliminates delays.
Because we are an asset-based and third-party logistics company, when an order comes in for something to ship from Point A to Point B, we have to distinguish what is the best, most efficient way for it to be transported. Do we have a truck in that area? If not, do we have a partner or vendor that works for us through our brokerage that might be aligned to service that load? Our system allows us to see all those trucks in real time.
We constantly update the software with information such as who are our top vendors in the past six months who have pulled loads from Point A to Point B, what we have offered those carriers before, how many loads they have hauled and who has performed best. The software analyzes all our data and automatically selects which carrier is the right fit for the job. If the job suits them, they will accept it, and that load has been taken care of without much hands-on involvement.
Personal service is still foremost at Star.
Although Star has this immensely helpful, time-saving automation in place, personal service remains our hallmark. You can still call Bobby Tyson or deal directly with Larry W. Jimenez, Jr., Vice President Business Development.
“We still are those guys,” said Tyson. “We’re not going to let a system change that. It must allow us to bridge that gap, let us continue being hands on, proactive. We don’t let the system get in the way of being who we are.”
If you would like to learn more about becoming a Star partner, either as a respected customer, team member or vendor, please reach out to Larry W. Jimenez, Jr., Vice President Business Development, at (813) 267-6740 or LWJimenez@StarDistribution.us, or visit www.StarDistribution.us.