HaulHound, a tech startup seeking to eliminate billions of dollars in inefficiencies in the logistics industry, has launched an innovative suite of features to its free online platform and mobile app for truck drivers and shippers. The new features, including instantaneous digital freight matching, come after extensive user testing and feedback.
Thirty percent of trucks on the road are empty at any given time because they are unable to find a shipper with appropriate freight, a costly number for the logistics industry and consumers alike, according to the company. With conventional load-listing services, truckers typically wait up to 24 hours or more to receive a response from shippers. These hours waiting are a total loss for all parties and many times force drivers to hit the road empty.
Last year, market research firm Frost & Sullivan estimated that North American truckers log 20 billion “empty miles” — that is, miles driven by trucks without cargo — annually.
To solve this problem, HaulHound now offers instant, automated results with its digital freight matching feature. A truck driver can simply enter his or her specifications and then immediately receive a list of available loads to fill their empty trucks. HaulHound has further raised the bar by offering this time- and money-saving premium service at no cost.
“As a former small fleet owner-operator, I knew truck drivers didn’t need more things to buy and I wanted to level the playing field by connecting small fleet owners with big-time shippers and loads,” said co-founder Chris Faltin. “We believe access to information should be free,” contends co-founder Andrew Kim. “We are industry veterans who want to modernize this industry to make life easier and cost effective for all logistics professionals.”
To round out the platform update, HaulHound is also launching the following new features:
• Quick-Pay options in partnership with industry expert Express Freight Finance, which formerly worked with DAT and GetLoaded, to help truckers get paid sooner
• Lane alerts, like hotel and flight price alerts, to notify shippers when a driver is available to move a load at a pre-determined cost
• Compatibility with three times more equipment types and special load capabilities that other services overlook
Kim, with a supply chain management background, and co-founder Faltin, a third generation truck driver, bring together both halves of the logistics equation. HaulHound was developed with the guidance of board member Greg Conley, who was instrumental at the start of the digital revolution of the travel industry 30 years ago as CEO of Galileo (now Travelport).
“We like to think of ourselves as the Google or search engine for people to look for logistics,” said Kim.
In order to provide up-to-date search results, HaulHound integrates with the internal tracking systems of a number of large logistics firms. These integrations pose something of a technological challenge because many companies have custom-built systems.
“It’s a very fragmented market and you have to adapt your technologies to fit everyone’s home-built technologies and make sure everything is in real time,” Kim said. “It’s tough to integrate because there’s no standard management system that everyone uses, and there’s no database that we can link into.”
In Kim’s view, however, the up-front investment is worth it because it ensures that the data on the platform is always up-to-date and makes the collaboration seamless for companies who use it.
In order to bring independent operators onto the platform, HaulHound also provides a smartphone app that enables them to post availability and manage bookings while on the road.
HaulHound was founded in 2016, HaulHound’s mission is to compile and organize logistics information and make it easily accessible and cost-effective for anyone to Find and Fill Empty Trucks.