Through Machine Learning, Robotic Process Application and Artificial Intelligence, Direct
Expedite experienced 80% faster response time, 100% Accuracy and a 400% increase in
business overall in the past 9 months
While all transportation modes feel pressure to find capacity, move shipments, and track
freight movement, these processes are particularly intense for expediting companies.
Beyond just getting cargo from point A to point B, expedited freight service providers know
that these shipments require speed, and streamlining the supportive tasks surrounding the
process, such as rate quoting, booking, and tracking is crucial. Direct Expedite goes a step
further by providing photos of Driver and Vehicle at time of booking, verification of driver’s
license validity, photo of freight secured on board at shipper, and a hard copy POD to the
customer prior to the driver leaving the consignee dock.
“For a shipment to be truly expedited, the entire process must also be expedited and with
precision,” said Dale Prax, president and CEO of Direct Expedite. “I like to compare our
Ground Expedite services to those of the “expedited” services performed by a First
Responder and an ambulance. If I had a broken arm, I might take an Uber, I might take a bus, or ask a friend for a ride to the doctor’s office. But if I have a brain aneurysm, I don’t want some Uber or Lyft guy to pick me up, I don’t want to ride with a bunch of other people in a bus.
I don’t want to rent a car and drive myself. If I have a serious medical condition, I need
to be sure that the entire process is expedited with precision. I need to know that I have a
solid team looking after me every moment from the first call to arrival at the hospital. I need
to be assured that every precaution is taken so that I arrive quickly and that I get the best
treatment enroute - I want an ambulance! We try to keep this analogy in mind for every one
of our customer’s shipments.”
Since opening its doors in October 2019, Direct Expedite set its sights on revolutionizing
ground expedited freight transportation processes through disruption and innovation. “ We
wanted two things out of the gate” said Prax. ``We wanted to be the first in the market to
offer an instant online rate quote platform offering multiple options with guaranteed
capacity. We also wanted to be the first in the Ground Expedite market to provide the
customer with the ability to book a load into Direct Expedite’s Transportation Management
System without the customer or a human on our staff having to go through the data entry
process manually.. The anticipated outcome was to provide best-in-class deliveries for
time-sensitive, just-in-time and deferred freight through state of the art technology and
value added services that no one else does.
To make this strategy come to fruition, Direct Expedite started looking for reliable and
cost-effective solutions. It found what it was looking for in intelligent automation
technology. The challenge then became how to apply this so-called “disruptive” technology
to the business and fulfill its goals. “We knew that purchased transportation costs would
remain constant and fuel prices would continue to rise, so our goal was to lower overhead
while not reducing our employee count, and at the same time scale the company. As luck
would have it, we started at the onset of COVID-19 — We knew that RPA, AI and machine
learning were the answer,” said Prax.
The company started by building a proprietary patent pending quoting system, developed an
RPA for quoting, booking and tracking and it automated it’s carrier vetting and onboarding
processes. Direct Expedite continues to develop technology solutions for many rote tasks
internally with robotic process automation (RPA). However, because it is an expedite service
provider, and not a tech company, Direct Expedite outsources the more complex processes
such as automating its entire accounting process to its partner Hubtek.
Direct Expedite can now take what is normally handled over the phone through a voice
interaction, or via text or email, and convert all that into a digital format so that the human
doesn’t have to interact at that level. It doesn’t eliminate human interaction, but it
fundamentally changes what a human does.
Direct Expedite’s digital worker, DEXi, enters it’s TMS system as a user, scans documents,
forms and emails for data, and transfers the data to the TMS. By automating many of the
mundane quoting, booking, tracking and accounting processes associated with each
shipment, Direct Expedite has been able to provide faster service at a reasonable price and
as a result is generally the first quote back to the customer.
“With our Patent Pending Multi-Option Quoting system, we can now provide guaranteed
capacity within four hours to any major metro area and six hours to any nonmajor metro
area,” said Prax. “We only need a ZIP code of where it’s picking up,and the Zip code of the
consignee and DEXi reads the email and sends back an email within 5 seconds saying, “We
received it and are working on it.” Within 15 seconds, an email is sent with all the
parameters for the type of vehicles that are available, the lane, the cost and a link for them
to book the freight immediately. While the customers are waiting for other providers to
respond, we’ve sometimes already got the rate booked in our system and a driver assigned.”
Since the introduction of our quoting system (available via our App on App Store and
Google Play, our Website or via Email) and DEXi Direct Expedite has seen a 400% increase
in business, an 80% faster response time and 100% accuracy, which is huge for customer
satisfaction and retention.
But it’s not only customers that automation helps a company to retain. Because the
mundane tasks are handled through automation, it allows employees to pursue more
meaningful aspects of their jobs. In the 6 minutes that it used to take to provide a rate
quote, Prax can do things like retrieve a picture of the 17 straps needed on the truck or a
picture of the driver’s licenses to send to the customer so it can recognize the driver and
eliminate potential fraud or theft of property, or obtain a video of the LIftgate in Operation to
ensure there are not issues at the shipper. These are all value added processes that Direct
Expedite can provide without adding humans.
“Ground Expedite is a very reactive industry. Customers expect and deserve information
‘right now’ so they can make decisions immediately. What we do can be very demanding,
but we have to be able to maintain control of that. I have said from our very first day as the
leader of this company, that to be successful in these trying times, we will not rest with
anticipating or reacting to changes within the market, but rather we will be the Ground
Expedite technology pioneers that offer innovation and disruption that changes the market.
We will challenge the status quo and define innovative ways to gain market share, improve
efficiency and optimize profits.” Said Prax