Logistics technology provider MercuryGate International Inc. today said it has launched a program that connects users of its transportation management system (TMS) with pre-approved logistics service providers (LSPs) that can advise shippers on tricky supply chain applications.
Known as the "Logistics Integrator Program," the product is designed for shippers that handle enough freight volume to justify buying their own TMS platform but need help customizing and applying the software to meet specific business needs, MercuryGate said. In the past, shippers would typically outsource the job to a third-party logistics provider (3PL), which would often insist on using its own TMS application. Under the new program, TMS users can keep their own software and still take advantage of the delivery and execution advice of an experienced LSP, Cary, N.C.-based MercuryGate said.
"Many shippers are aware of the potential benefits of transportation management technology, but may be limited by the number or experience of internal resources available to facilitate the implementation process or optimize performance of a system once it is in place," MercuryGate CEO Monica Wooden said in a statement.
MercuryGate said that Chicago-based 3PL Redwood Logistics was the first company to become part of the program. Redwood's customers can now leverage its expertise in TMS design, testing, and training, MercuryGate said. Users can ease the burden on their own IT departments by relying on Redwood to set up MercuryGate TMS, integrate other platforms into it, and create tailored solutions that match the shipper's needs, MercuryGate said.
Working with expert partners is the most direct way for a shipper to keep up with the accelerating pace of change in the supply chain industry, MercuryGate Vice President John Carey said in a webcast about the program in consultant Adrian Gonzalez's "Talking Logistics" series. The webcast is titled "There's no silver bullet; extracting maximum and ongoing benefit from a TMS."
"What we realized was that customers wanted the best operational experience of an LSP, and they wanted the best technology tool for a TMS. But what they also needed was resources, and different resources at different points in their journey," Carey said in the video. "[Redwood has] the expertise and the resources to come in and operate on the shipper's behalf. And that's more than a 3PL function. That's really embedding themselves in the shipper's business and being invested in their success on a daily basis."