Project44 takes on shipping disruptions via actionable in-terminal insights

Terminal-level data is known for being opaque and unreliable, but that is changing

(Photo: Jim Allen/FreightWaves)
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Shipping delays are a major contributor to disruptions like supply chain partnership breakdowns, end consumer complaints and expensive inefficiencies. Pinpointing where these delays occur — and solving for them — requires top-notch visibility and actionable data points. 

In-transit visibility options have skyrocketed over the past several years, making it easier than ever to track a shipment’s en route movements. The same cannot be said, however, for terminal visibility. project44’s newest offering sets out to change that, giving companies their first-ever reliable data-driven look inside container terminals.

The company has added Ocean Terminal Visibility to its visibility platform, Movement by project44.

With p44’s new product, companies can gain access to data surrounding in-terminal events not offered by ocean carriers, NVOCCs or terminal websites. These hard-to-find insights include container discharge, location in the terminal, last free day information and status–including holds, customs clearance, and availability for pickup. 

“What customers will find is that it is head and shoulders above anything they can get their hands on to date,” Adam Compain, project44’s global head of product marketing, said. “The new product provides visibility into 62 terminals and 26 ports, effectively covering 95% of U.S. containerized freight.”

This solution is groundbreaking because the majority of delays do not actually occur during transit, but rather at interchange points along the way. The inner workings of these locations — including container terminals — have historically been shrouded in mystery. They are owned and operated by a variety of parties, and they are often disconnected from the wider supply chain.

Within the ocean shipping community, data from inside terminals is well-known for being nonstandardized and inaccessible. Metrics like discharge time, customs status and real-time location are difficult to pin down and notoriously unreliable. 

Unfortunately, what someone doesn’t know can hurt them. In this case, it probably already is. A lot of logistics costs are incurred by a lack of visibility, particularly when it comes to containers sitting in yards for too long due to poor communication around pickup availability. Demurrage fees have climbed since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic and can easily add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars in wasted cash over the course of several days.

It is about more than just racking up demurrage fees, though. When companies lack terminal visibility, they are not able to efficiently enact downstream events like drayage, once again causing financial strain and delays.

These delays ultimately lead to unsatisfied end customers, creating a snowball effect of negative reviews, reduced sales and damaged reputations for shippers. Having accurate in-terminal insights offers companies the power to avoid fees and delays from the start, stopping the avalanche before it starts.

“The bar keeps raising for performance and supply chain excellence,” Compain said. “To gain a competitive advantage and delight customers, the best insights are needed.”

Having the best insights means partnering with the best data providers. Insights are useless if they are not accurate and updated. Strong providers should exhibit a proven track record of providing high-quality data, as well as an ongoing commitment to innovation and growth as technology — and consumer expectations — continue to evolve. 

“Visibility and supply chain transformation is a journey,” Compain said. “It behooves companies to partner with the most innovative software partner.”

While p44’s newest product is starting out with imports to North American ports, it already boasts global relevance. The insights offered via this solution provide actionable metrics for any company importing goods to the U.S., regardless of their home base. 

This new product joins p44’s existing suite of ocean insights, adding an additional layer of visibility to the company’s lineup, which includes the following offerings: 

  • Containerized, bulk and RoRo visibility
  • Real-time port intelligence
  • Highly reliable sailing schedules
  • Ocean transport emissions measurement
  • Detention and demurrage analytics

Each of these capabilities provides users with next-level visibility thanks to project44’s commitment to accuracy, whether that means tracking over 5 million sailing schedules each day or measuring scope 3 transportation emissions.

“project44 has built the connective tissue of the supply chain and, with data science and machine learning capabilities, ensures companies get the breadth, depth and intelligence needed to solve their most complex international challenges,” Compain said.

Click here to learn more about p44’s suite of ocean offerings.

Ashley Coker

Ashley is interested in everything that moves, especially trucks and planes. She covers air cargo, trucking and sponsored content. She studied journalism at Middle Tennessee State University and worked as an editor and reporter at two daily newspapers before joining FreightWaves. Ashley spends her free time at the dog park with her beagle, Ruth, or scouring the internet for last minute flight deals.

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