Software firms forge “toll control” apps

To help fleets gain better control of the cost of highway tolls, two software firms are teaming up to offer two unique applications that jointly work to reduce the impact tolls have on the bottom line

To help fleets gain better control of the cost of highway tolls, two software firms are teaming up to offer two unique applications that jointly work to reduce the impact tolls have on the bottom line.

ALK Technologies is partnering with EBE Technologies to launch two applications – PC*MILER|Tolls Auditor and PC*MILER|Tolls Manager. Both applications combine the unique database and functionality of ALK's PC*MILER|Tolls application with the data integration and workflow capabilities of EBE Technologies to document toll costs by customer for reimbursement or rate negotiation, monitor the use of toll facilities by drivers, and validate the charges invoiced to carriers by toll authorities.

On the ALK side of the partnership, the company continually monitors posted costs at all North American toll facilities, including tunnels, bridges, and roadways. These rates are regularly combined with ALK's industry-standard routing, mileage, and map data in PC*MILER|Tolls, which knows the exact toll charges along any particular route for virtually any vehicle configuration.

Meanwhile, EBE's integrated workflow and process management solutions streamline the flow of work, eliminating the labor intensive operational tasks throughout an organization. Known collectively by the brand name SHIPS, these applications address trucking departments individually while freely transmitting data and documents among them.

"Tolls are rising rapidly everywhere and appearing in places they have never been before. No carrier can afford to simply absorb toll charges as many did in the past," said Craig Fiander, ALK's vp-marketing.

The merging of PC*MILER|Tolls with SHIPS, he said, raises tolls to the level of traditional cost elements in the trucking process. Much like driver hours and fuel use, tolls should be verified and documented so that costs can be recaptured through reimbursement, erroneous charges can be credited, and drivers can be prevented from incurring unauthorized tolls, Fiander noted.

“The collaboration between EBE and ALK provides the industry with a solution that neither of our organizations is positioned to offer independently,” added Cindy Nelson, EBE's vp-marketing and business development. “Through this partnership, we will help carriers manage a daunting manual task resulting in improved customer service and a more profitable operation – such as tolls being billed to customers based on specific business rules.”

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