Indonesian tech startup Transporta recently launched its free transport management system (TMS) for the country’s small trucking operators who wish to digitise their entire order management and deliver fulfilment cycle.
The new TMS will help truckers get rid of their manual processes by streamlining every aspect of their business on a single centralised platform: submitting bids, managing orders, scheduling routes, assigning drivers, tracking deliveries, and invoicing clients.
“"We are targeting to onboard 10,000 trucking companies onto Transporta over the next three years. Currently, we are entering potential partnerships to around 1,900 truckers via the Indonesia Truck Association (Aptrindo). We are also leveraging partnerships with Internet of Things startup Lacak.io to further optimise our services and help SME truckers with a centralised cloud solution," said Emma Hartono, COO of Transporta.
Transporta is a brainchild of local IoT startup Lacak.io board advisor Willy Anwar and cloud solutions expert Emma Hartono.
Meeting challenges of the e-commerce boom
Truckers in Indonesia need to scale up operations to meet the requirements of a booming e-commerce sector, which grew 54% year-on-year, reaching US$32 billion in 2020. Last year's growth was hastened by rapid digitalisation of services brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent social distancing norms.
"Growing e-commerce sectors are driving up the demand for e-commerce logistics. However, technologies to run logistics companies are falling behind. Indonesia's truckers face limited to no visibility on their operations - be it orders, performance, utilities or finance. They also deal with poor internal communications and scattered data sources,” Hartono said
She also pointed out that vast majority of Indonesia's SME truckers are using basic ERP systems whilst communicating with clients, drivers, and suppliers on separate messaging apps.
“Not only is this onerous and time-consuming, but the massive inefficiencies often result in idle trucks, half-empty hauls, and worst of all, late deliveries and unhappy customers,” said Hartono
Transporta’s TMS helps solve these challenges by giving trucking a bird's eye-view of their operations through a centralised cloud platform. With all the communication and business tools located on a single streamlined TMS platform, truckers can maximise the speed of their daily operations and utilise resources such as routes, truck space, petrol usage, and driver cohorts efficiently, driving both profitability and delivery performance.
"Transport management systems have proved to be able to reduce logistics costs with a majority of freight savings coming from better routing and negotiations. In Indonesia, where logistics costs are among the highest in ASEAN at 30% of GDP, savings are expected to be even larger," Emma pointed out.
Making smart logistics affordable
However, small truckers – those with 20 trucks or less – who account for over 75% of the country’s estimated 100,000 trucking companies cannot afford to implement the expensive, hardware-heavy TMS available in the market. They are required to pay an upfront license for the solution, plus additional cost for setup, maintenance, hardware, and staff training.
Various reports estimate cost savings between 5% and 15% from implementing a TMS, but even a 15% gain may not be enough to convince an SME trucker to digitise.
According to Hartono, Transporta's affordable TMS immediately changes the game with its quick and easy self-onboarding process, no-cost staff support, asset-light web-based solution, and seamless integration with existing apps like WhatsApp.
It also provides free online training and enablement to new users and trucking companies' staff, so everyone can easily use the technology.
"Essentially, small truckers in developing nations like Indonesia are competing with both eyes closed. Now, with Transporta at their side, Indonesia's SME truckers can take on the big guns -- at practically zero cost," said Hartono.
"As we grow with Indonesia's booming logistics sector, Transporta will continuously enrich our TMS offerings. Upcoming features in our product pipeline include driver ratings, a mobile app, a shipper platform, as well as seamless integration with other logistics systems," said Hartono.