How McLeod Software Used APIs to Improve Communications

08 Jan

From Programmable Web

In a recent move to improve communications between freight carriers and transport logistics companies, McLeod Software leveraged the power of APIs, according to a recent post by Beth Schultz for No Jitter.

In spring of 2015, McLeod began offering SMS integration for its ERP systems, with the company’s freight broker software PowerBroker serving as the leading use case. PowerBroker matches freight with carriers to simplify the process when the logistics companies don’t own the trucks or employ the drivers.

This means that in a typical transaction, the driver may be on a single-carriage contract that poses problems for establishing reliable lines of communication for issuing information and instructions. This task is traditionally performed by dispatchers using their personal cell phones to communicate with those of the drivers, but this method is both inefficient and exposed to human error.

The team at McLeod discovered the Communications API Platform from Bandwidth, ultimately using it to integrate text communications into PowerBroker, removing the need for dispatchers to use their personal devices. Dispatchers now use the messaging feature inside PowerBorker to communicate with contractors, and inbound messages are matched to the logistic company’s outbound phone number.

The addition of SMS integration means that the background processes for freight transactions happen faster to help get the load on the road and to the recipient on time. A potential next step for McLeod may be enabling the transfer of multimedia messages which would allow drivers to send images of delivery receipts as the company continues to use APIs to open more communication for an enhanced service.

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