Global logistics company C.H. Robinson is offering a free tool for large shippers that it says disrupts the traditional annual bidding process.
Procure IQ uses data from C.H. Robinson’s large shipper and carrier community to give shippers an opportunity to analyze each freight lane through a comparative pricing, volume and service analysis, rather than solely purchasing transportation lanes in bulk during an annual bidding process.
Developed inside Robinson Labs, the company’s innovation incubator, Procure IQ provides a personalized, data visualization of an individual customer’s shipping lanes, or routes, integrated with C.H. Robinson’s vast freight marketplace data, unlocking the optimal way to purchase transportation.
For example, it is often more cost-effective and reliable to purchase less frequently traveled lanes with real-time pricing engines, says the company, while other more frequently traveled lanes are best purchased through a proactive contract in order to optimize savings and service.
“People are looking for technology that gives them an improved way to purchase all kinds of things, from airline tickets to car insurance,” said C.H. Robinson CEO and President Bob Biesterfeld. “Why should buying freight transportation be any different?”
Procure IQ works by inputting customer shipping needs and data, such as lane origin and destination and volume estimates, and then integrating that with C.H. Robinson’s dataset filled with billions of transactions from 200,000 carriers and shippers and 18 million annual shipments. Using this information along with predictive analytics and artificial intelligence, Procure IQ provides shippers a custom visual analysis with tailored recommendations for optimal procurement and capacity strategies for each shipment.
Already, Procure IQ has helped large shippers find that up to 60% of their routes would capture an increase in savings and/or service reliability by using this approach, according to C.H. Robinson.
One of them is IPC, the purchasing cooperative for Subway Franchisees. “As we navigate a historically volatile market, we are rethinking how we do business,” said Matt Montour, senior director of logistics at IPC. “Procure IQ’s advanced analytics can help us navigate uncertainty and has been invaluable in helping us develop a new, more efficient and cost-effective transportation-buying process, for everything from fresh food to kitchen equipment.”
A June customer research study with over 1,000 of C.H. Robinson’s largest customers revealed that more than 50% are looking for tools like this to help them predictive analytics, reporting and dashboard development.
“We are disrupting a decades-old way the entire industry buys transportation in order to drive better outcomes for shippers,” said Biesterfeld.