How would you ship an 85,000-pound excavator from a warehouse outside Omaha to a construction site in Orlando?
Traditionally, it’s been a case of choosing the better of two bad options.
If you prefer the do-it-yourself route, you can spend the next few days calling carriers, analyzing estimates, and verifying credentials.
Or, if time is the top priority, you can pay a broker to find a qualified carrier and pray that they are quoting you fair prices.
That’s why FR8Star wants to build a new kind of heavy hauling marketplace — one driven by technology and defined by transparency.
The Oakland-based startup is already making waves in the flatbed shipping world with a freight rate estimator tool that is literally getting smarter by the minute. It combines freight details with real-time data on everything from road closures to fuel costs, giving shippers all the info they need to budget and buy with confidence.
Facing a Roadblock
Even as FR8Star leads its industry toward a digital transformation, the phone continues to play a major role in customer communications. After all, when you’re trying to ship a $100,000 asset, it’s always nice to hear a human voice providing advice and assurance along the way.
But as Head of Customer Experience, Archit Khatri, started to scale his team, he could no longer ignore a stubborn obstacle.
“As a company that relies on analytics as a competitive edge, our phone system wasn’t giving us nearly enough data to work with,” Archit remembered. “By the time I got what I needed out of a separate spreadsheet, the data wasn’t very valuable. I always felt 24 hours behind when making management decisions.”
The overall complexity of the phone system was also slowing down important changes. Even something as simple as updating an IVR menu (ex.“Press 3 for Billing”) might take several hours.
As a result, the young company couldn’t help but wonder how many new business opportunities were spoiled by such delays.
Taking a Detour
FR8Star’s search for a smarter phone system ultimately led to Aircall. And for Archit, our live analytics have been especially impactful.
“Let’s just say it was an eye-opening experience,” Archit laughed. “We felt pretty good about how our operations were progressing, but the detailed data made it clear just how much room for improvement we still had.”
Aircall’s insights into missed calls, for example, helped Archit visualize exactly where callers were abandoning the main IVR menu. Call logs also revealed a spike in early-morning misses that suggested East Coast clientele were being underserved by the team’s delayed start.
With a few hours of planning and a few seconds of clicking, he was able to set a more effective IVR sequence and realign staff schedules.
Expanding the Map
Aircall’s arrival coincided with an impressive growth phase for FR8Star. During our first business quarter together, inbound call volume increased by 80%. Even more impressive, the team’s missed call rate decreased by 15% during that time despite no new hiring.
Expansion plans are definitely on the horizon, however. And Aircall’s data is already helping Archit determine when and where additional staff will be needed most.
“We’re currently a company of 27 employees with a massive opportunity — and responsibility — to shape the future direction of our market,” Archit explained. “We look forward to working with strategic partners like Aircall who we can trust to think together, resolve together, and build together while revolutionizing the industry we serve.”
Published on February 23, 2023.