The Vital Knowledge Center for All Your Transportational Data

By Scott Balthaser | September 1, 2022

How Syntelic Adds Value to Your Investments in Onboard Computers

For comprehensive transportation intelligence, Syntelic goes beyond the capabilities of any single point solution such as those from the onboard computer companies. In fact, some of the most successful distribution companies in North America rely on Syntelic to optimize their operations.

Syntelic customers value the increased visibility, ultimate flexibility, and analytics that support fact-based decision-making to maximize route profitability.

Syntelic Provides Transportation Intelligence

Onboard computer (OBC) suppliers provide software to get at the performance data generated by their on-the-trucks hardware using a library of template reports, some with charts and graphs. The OBCs replace paper logs for Hours of Service and route arrival and departure times. You can look typically sort drivers from best to worst for various metrics, such as speeding and hard-breaking events.

However, all of these programs have their inevitable limitations. At some point, they won’t give you what you need, and you will be facing a significant dollar outlay for a single customization. Later, when you need something new, you will again have to request customization and wait weeks before seeing it implemented. Syntelic works closely with the onboard computer vendors. In fact, some recommend Syntelic when their customers need a more advanced solution for “transportation intelligence.”

Syntelic acts as the hub for merging all of your vital transportation data in one place. By design, Syntelic is a flexible tool linking data from disparate places, even manual data such as routing information and customer information kept in spreadsheets and other static electronic sources. We work with you to understand how your operations work, and then we configure Syntelic to meet the specific needs of your transportation team and upper management.

Plus VS Actual: The Holy Grail

When you use Syntelic to evaluate performance and route profitability, you get both a high-level view and the ability to drill down into the details. You can easily compare and contrast planned route schedules with the actual timetables recorded by the OBCs. The Plan vs. Actual variances can be seen at a glance using our Visual Route bar, which lines up planned routes with actual route data.

But We Don’t Have a Routing System.

Even when companies don’t have a software routing system, they do have a system for planning and dispatching routes. It might be a spreadsheet. It might be a white board, or even pen and paper. But it is a system. Most private fleet transportation operations have manual processes or institutional experience to stay on top of a route plan. Without a way to merge plan and actual in one view, there is no easy way to measure the variance between plan vs. actual performance, route by route. Our integration process can work with route information from Master Routes, and Order Management Systems to create a point of comparison for the actual data logged by drivers and the OBCs. We can even bring in driver demographic data, customer service data, OS&D, documents as attachments, to assist in predictive analytics and offer visibility into each route’s performance over time.

The Myth of Plan = Actual

Time and again we encounter companies that made performance gains using OBC software suites, but they haven’t leveraged their OBC data to go back to optimize their route planning. Or they have struggled to match up planning route data with actual data, and they live with generalized numbers such as our plan met our actual performance this week. If they had the ability to drill down to the route level, they would find that some drivers beat the plan, and some drivers fell behind the plan, averaging it out. If they could manage by exception (Syntelic’s strong suite) they could get more drivers to rise to the level of the best performing drivers, greatly improving route profitability.

Syntelic features drag-and-drop dashboard creation, interactive data visualizations, data filtering, and an easy-to-use calc builder. Syntelic doesn’t just tell you what happened but helps you see connections and make decisions.

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