- J.B. Hunt Transport Services on Thursday launched a new freight marketplace, J.B. Hunt 360, which promises to help shippers and carriers match demand with capacity in real-time, while providing rate and delivery time visibility for shippers.
- The new service is part of the company's move to deliver modern supply chain solutions as "customers are demanding greater visibility and information into their supply chain in real time," according to CEO John Roberts.
- In line with this mission, the company also plans to invest $500 million within the next five years into technology that enhances its operating systems and cloud-based infrastructure. The company also noted it had doubled its engineering and technology talent to support the transition.
The trucking industry, and truckers in general, are often perceived to be slow to adopt new technology. The idea that the comparative age of drivers (50 and over) contributes to their refusal reinforces the adage that you can't teach an old dog new tricks.
Except that you can. In fact, with its tactical leap into the future, J.B. Hunt is embracing two technologies at once: visibility and digitization. Various logistics startups, and now J.B. Hunt, are looking to push the industry into the future starting with drayage with solutions offering an immediate view of costs to ship over land, whether with Hunt or their preferred shipper. Simplifying and aggregating drayage shipping costs is expected to be a boon for the transport industry by decreasing wasted time and boosting transparency.
For J.B. Hunt, entry into the visibility-solution market alongside a general overhaul of its technology infrastructure may further position it as a leader in the trucking industry. Yet, the trucking giant clearly sees technology and talent as inter-related pieces of the supply chain modernization puzzle. In addition to doubling its technology and engineering staff, the J.B. Hunt also recently donated $2.75 million to start a supply chain management program at the University of Arkansas.