Aljex Software Inc. — a provider of hosted management software for freight brokers, carriers, third-party logistics providers and other transportation companies — announced today, Nov. 6, what it describes as a major software upgrade. Since Aljex is hosted on the Internet, the upgrade — when deployed — will be available to all users.
The company says the upgrade enhances Smartsearch, an exclusive Aljex feature designed to display information on prior loads automatically from a given location or shipper. Smartsearch can, at a broker’s option, automatically offer current loads through e-mail to carriers that have handled that or similar business before; according to the company; a carrier actually can book a load, again by e-mail, as the broker works on other business.
The latest enhancement adds even more information that can be helpful to a working broker, Aljex says; for example, brokers will be able to log phone calls into Smartsearch so they will know who already has been called for a given load. In the Aljex “open load” screen, they will be able to see how many e-mails, faxes and calls have been made so far on a load; according to the company, this can help avoid duplicated effort and identify problem business.
Aljex says Smartsearch also will keep track of what was offered each carrier and what the carrier bid on a load; it will be able to e-mail load offers to carriers at specific amounts or request bids. An interested carrier can click on an e-mail to accept an offered amount or go to the broker’s website and enter a bid, according to the company; all this information becomes part of the Smartsearch display. Aljex customers will be able to see instantly which carriers want loads and at what prices.
“Aljex’s theme is continuous improvement,” says Tom Heine, president of the Middlesex, N.J.-based company. “There is always a better, easier and more efficient way to do something. Smartsearch is crucial — users don’t have to open another program or navigate away from a working page. Users can even see available trucks posted in TransCore’s DAT and Posteverywhere.com. All of the information is there at a single keystroke. That is the very definition of the word efficient, at least where software is concerned.”
Aljex says Smartsearch will show which carriers were e-mailed and faxed, and also the last time a carrier was contacted for any reason; it also will show that carrier’s pricing on a load, with and without fuel surcharges. Users will be able to set a timeframe to search, according to the company; for occasional loads, brokers may want to search a year or two of history, while for loads handled all the time, it may be better to see carriers from the past month.
The new Smartsearch upgrade currently is being tested by volunteer Aljex customers; clients can choose simply to turn the new features on – or not. “Some clients don’t like change, and others want every improvement” Heine says. “We like to give them the option.”
Aljex says its software is available to authorized users from any Internet-connected computer. Customer data is secure and backed up constantly on Aljex servers at company headquarters, as well as at backup locations in three regions of the country.