Being a vendor of transportation management system (TMS) software in 2018 means that customers are demanding answers to painful realities like a shortage of truck drivers, tight freight capacity, rising shipping costs, and demanding consumers. Manhattan Associates' Gregg Lanyard, director of product management for TMS, says the struggle is real, with users reporting conditions like a jump of 20 percent in transportation budgets, a rise of 25 percent in the rate of loads declined by primary carriers, and a leap of 200 to 300 percent in shipments being tendered on the spot market instead of via contracted carriers.
Speaking at CSCMP's Edge conference in Nashville, Lanyard said that these tough market conditions are not forecast to change anytime soon, so Manhattan Associates has rolled out upgrades to its platforms that help alleviate the pressure. Recent tweaks include a TMS Mobile feature that offers a smartphone app for private and dedicated fleets that can assist with tasks like tendering and accepting loads, proof of delivery, arrival and departure tracking, and global position system (GPS)-based geofences. In another offering, the firm built an integration between its TMS platform and the Freight Rover digital freight marketplace, allowing its customers to push their shipments to an efficient online marketplace when carriers decline loads, Lanyard said.