Carrier Logistics user group talks future of trucking

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Ben Wiesen, president of CLIBen Wiesen, president of CLI

Transportation executives from across North America gathered to discuss the state of the industry, the outlook for the future and solutions to current issues at “Driving Results,” the Carrier Logistics Inc. (CLI) User Group Conference, October 4-5, at Hotel Chicago Downtown.

Ben Wiesen, president of CLI and Scott L. Dobak, CEO of Dicom Transportation Group, delivered presentations on the future of trucking and technology to a ballroom of transportation and technology professionals.

CLI is a transportation software developer and engineering consulting firm headquartered in Tarrytown, N.Y.

Ben Wiesen, newly-appointed as CLI president, assured attendees that the company will remain true to its mission of providing the best service possible while serving as extension to its customers’ IT departments.

“Customers like you are fundamental to our success,” he said. Later in the event, he previewed new functions of the CLI FACTS transportation management system (TMS) as well as new integrations in the pipeline for load tracking and analytics for management reporting, and dynamic pricing. Wiesen said artificial intelligence and machine learning are making inroads in how truckers manage their business.

In his opening industry keynote address, Scott Dobak, president of Dicom USA, a $150-million carrier based in Ypsilanti, Mich., discussed Dicom’s work with CLI to increase route optimization and introduce a network of regular and contracted drivers.

Dobak talked about the changing landscape of e-commerce logistics such as store pickups and deliveries of online purchases and new innovations that shippers are embracing such as regional parcel supply chain nodes, pool distribution, unattended deliveries, and photo/image time-stamped proofs of delivery.

The packed agenda  included talks on the economic state of the trucking industry by Ari Rosa, vice president and airfreight, surface transportation analyst, at BofA Merrill Lynch; the rising use of passive radio-frequency identification (RFID) of pallets in warehouses and trucks by Raul Garcia of Barcoding Inc.; insights into rating solutions and other platforms by Brian Thompson, chief commercial officer, SMC3; and the advantages of API over electronic data interface (EDI) from Sam Ralat, Project 44.

CLI executives led sessions on latest developments and functions of the CLI FACTS TMS including the 11.2 version, and covering such issues as customer service, billing & rating, address validation and geocoding, disaster recovery and security, and planning and dispatch.