Procurement and sourcing can be a handful for both shippers and carriers looking for partners to meet their business needs, whether it’s moving freight or finding available loads.
When Trimble acquired Kuebix in 2020, it was the first step toward bringing supply chain stakeholders closer together, and the launch of Community Load Match (CLM) for spot quote needs in May 2020 was a groundbreaking milestone in creating a shared platform where both parties could collaborate more closely.
The Kuebix Load Match Group (KLMG) was brought together as a team of experienced transportation professionals who use their industry expertise to help users better leverage CLM to meet their specific business needs and goals. Recently, the group has expanded its mission to become the Transportation Sourcing Group (TSG), which provides advisory services to shippers and carriers to create strategic procurement and sourcing opportunities and drive mutually beneficial results.
To get the scoop on what’s new with TSG and how its combination of technology and advisory services can benefit Trimble customers, we sat down with Pete Coumounduros, general manager.
Tell us about your current role with Trimble and your career path throughout the years.
Prior to joining the Kuebix team 2.5 years ago, I spent 30 years running an asset-based truckload company in the Northeast, handling all the facets of operations, sales, finance, safety, risk/insurance, compliance, HR and more.
I joined Kuebix just before it was acquired by Trimble – at the time, KLMG was primarily focused on connecting Kuebix shippers with community carriers on the platform. After the acquisition, we have connected with a growing number of carriers in Trimble’s network, and now we’ve expanded our mission even further.
My team works on combining the Trimble procurement technology with our advisory service to help shippers and carriers truly collaborate, discover what they’re each looking for and find success in the platform across a wide variety of procurement approaches (i.e. full RFP, short-term RFP, project/lane mini-bids and spot quotes).
We recently learned that KLMG is expanding its scope to become the Transportation Sourcing Group (TSG). Could you tell us more about what the Transportation Sourcing Group will be focused on?
With TSG, we are bringing our industry expertise and leading Trimble procurement technology to increase shipper/carrier engagement.
For shippers, TSG provides RFP services, leveraging Trimble technology to help shippers gain new, direct relationships with carriers, communicating goals to current and prospective carriers and delivering results and data analysis to them for a final decision.
On the flip side for carriers, TSG is a resource for the carrier’s sales team, leveraging an agnostic platform to acquire new customers at a low cost, and because community carriers can designate preferred lanes, core competencies and specialized services, it’s ensured that they’re only connecting with shippers with lanes they can successfully fill.
We all know how tight the market is right now, and carriers are rightfully being more selective of taking one-off loads here and there – there is a time commitment for onboarding, paperwork, etc. But – when we can connect shippers to a larger pool of carriers for larger freight RFPs, it’s much easier to find carriers within that pool to handle the spot quote needs, too.
What does the formation of this new group mean for Trimble customers?
The entire TSG team was recruited from within the industry, whether it’s from the carrier side, broker side, 3PL side or shipper side. Our team has extensive hands-on experience being on the front line with sourcing and procurement, so when we talk to a shipper or carrier customer, we comfortably take on that persona and know exactly what they’re facing.
TSG is passionate about assisting the shipper or carrier find a path to success within the platform for their individual needs. We start by asking what their goals are, then do a deep dive into understanding their needs to scope out how we can help them gain success – and then we help connect the dots.
For example, a carrier may come to TSG with a set of lanes that are just not a good fit for their current network, but they aren’t sure how to pivot. That’s where TSG comes in, helping them consider new ideas and then actually go out into our shipper base to find potential new fits and make introductions. That could be more driver-friendly freight or finding new opportunities for the bottom 10 percent of their business.
There is a huge competitive advantage here for both carriers, who can find new freight to supplement their pipeline and accelerate the quality of leads, and for shippers, who can add new resources and capacity that are a fit for their network.
How does the work of the TSG support Trimble’s broader vision of creating a more connected supply chain?
We look at the connected supply chain as, simply, participants who are connected together for deeper collaboration, and TSG aims to drive the engagement between those participants in the platform. We want to increase the number of engagements between shippers and carriers, because the more engagement we have, the more stickiness there is in the connected supply chain.
One of my favorite parts of this job is working with others on the carrier and shipper side, and hearing from them about their aspirations and thoughts on this connected supply chain. We’re really at the point where it is truly a market paradigm shift.
The benefit is that these players are now together, satisfying their needs in a very streamlined way using the technology. And long term, we see this building out – we hope to continue expanding the platform and our services to more supply chain and logistics stakeholders, and find ways to work more closely together.
And, last but far from least, is working with the internal really smart folks on Trimble’s Data Science and Product teams. They are aggressively pushing to make the technology support the use cases of the shipper/carrier experience.
Optimize your supply chain with Trimble’s Transportation Sourcing Group
Ready to see how the Transportation Sourcing Group can help you increase collaboration and connectivity regardless of where you are in the supply chain?