A consortium of freight industry companies has published an industry standard for shipment appointment scheduling, a project that began late last year. The Scheduling Standards Consortium (SSC) announced the milestone at a press conference during the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals’ (CSCMP) annual Edge conference, taking place this week in Orlando.
The open standard for developing an application programming interface (API) for scheduling is available to Transportation Management System (TMS) developers on the software development platform GitHub. SSC members say the standard will “bring more cohesion and resiliency to the movement of goods, making it easier to book and manage appointments, optimize processes for carriers, shippers and receivers, and drive operational efficiencies for the industry at large.”
The standard gives shippers, carriers, and brokers a common language for handling scheduling workflows, allowing them to become more efficient, reduce empty miles and waste, lower costs, and improve service. Collaborating members of the consortium include trucking companies, third-party logistics services providers (3PLs), and logistics and supply chain technology providers.
The SSC was founded in December 2022 by freight industry companies Convoy, J.B. Hunt Transport Inc., and Uber Freight. The group expanded with the addition of Arrive Logistics, Blue Yonder, Coyote Logistics, e2open, Echo Logistics, One Network Enterprises, and Oracle earlier this year, and recently added DHL Supply Chain, Lineage Logistics, Mastery Logistics Systems, Transportation Insight & Nolan Transportation Group, and Ryder System, Inc. The group has also implemented a “badging” system to recognize and differentiate participants contributing to the project; “innovators” are those actively supporting or contributing to the standards development, and “early adopters” are TMS firms that have committed to integrating the SSC standard into their products by the end of 2024.
“We’re really just at the start,” and building momentum, said Spencer Frazier, executive vice president of sales and marketing at JB Hunt. “We’re celebrating innovation and leadership, and driving industry change for the better.”