CINCINNATI—Not all loads are good loads. Market average rate doesn’t always equate to the most profit. If fleets can see and understand slight shifts in freight markets, it can help them make the most rewarding decisions.
McLeod Software is using data analysis to help fleets make more profitable choices. The trucking software company demonstrated the new extension to its MPact market analysis tool, MPact Pro, during the National Private Truck Council’s NPTC 2022 trade show held here at the Duke Energy Convention Center downtown. By extracting more elements from the data on loads that actually moved, MPact Pro breaks down nationwide truckload lanes in more depth so customers can create a step-by-step picture of capacity and volume in markets and evaluate the ever-shifting rate landscape.The AI-based analysis for McLeod customers is used to create dashboards, graphs, and maps that can quickly identify the profitability of truck lanes, according to Barry Brookins, McLeod’s data science director. MPact PRO offers analysis about both buy and sell trucking rates—and the ability to benchmark and visualize the results against their own operating history.
Brookins explained that the analysis could be valuable to private fleets, for-hire carriers, and brokerages. Since private fleets are their own customers, they would focus less on the data's sell-side—unless looking for backhauls. “What they do with the broker side is they can look at a lane or an area and see what it would cost to get a truck on the open market and see if it would cost less to run their own truck,” he told FleetOwner.
“So that’s been a big thing for private fleets,” Brookins said. “What they use it for is when they are doing brokerage or they’re doing backhauls, they can see what they would expect to pay. They can answer the age-old question: Do I put it on my truck or farm it out?“
The system also shows off trends and key elements on-demand to help carriers and brokers optimize daily decisions by targeting where, when, and how to price freight based on the price and profitability potential. Filters and switches allow various customized views to analyze lane-based freight data from different perspectives. Clear and concise analysis in dashboard views helps guide business decisions concerning which markets and lanes to pursue.
McLeod’s truckload market dataset includes trailer types, load length of haul, load commodity, origins, and destinations, giving users more ways to slice and dissect their markets.Accessible directly from McLeod core LoadMaster and PowerBroker solutions, MPact Pro harnesses these real-time analytics, so users don’t have to navigate outside the system. This means McLeod customers can make daily sound decisions on complex freight capacity and pricing with straightforward visual dashboards.
When those rate influences are visible through intuitive displays, the market's what, why, and when becomes more apparent. “The big difference with MPact Pro is benchmarking,” Brookins said.
Companies can use the system to benchmark their performance against the overall market and develop a better strategy for pricing freight. For example, McLeod customers who choose to offer their anonymized data, get access to see how their transportation systems compared to others. All of this is shown in easy-to-read charts.