For Steve Frowen, owner of Steve Frowen Transport Ltd, the benefits of being a member of the country’s best freight exchange network are simple.
Being part of Haulage Exchange, which is operated by the Transport Exchange Group (TEG), has given Steve Frowen Transport a national profile and increased the amount of work the company does.
Steve joined the exchange four years ago and hasn’t looked back. Haulage Exchange enables members to trade loads and journeys and to source available or part-filled vehicles returning to base. Put simply, users with more freight than they can carry post the load on the site, and those with spare capacity register its availability. The parties then negotiate between themselves.
The system increases members’ efficiency as it enables them to reduce the number of empty vehicles they run, making each journey more profitable. The collaborative approach is also good for the bottom line because it enables members to share the cost burden of rising fuel prices, congestion charging and meeting onerous legislation. It also helps hauliers meet customers’ demand for carbon-efficient transport.
Steve, who began his Coventry-based business nine years ago, said: "Haulage Exchange is a fantastic product. Before I started using it I had some good working relationships with people in the Midlands.
"What Haulage Exchange has given me is profile with customers all through the UK. It has enabled me to build contacts with other hauliers. They know me and they know what I do.
"This gives us access to a far larger client base which leads to a greater amount of work. More work means greater turnover and ultimately more profit."
Since he started using the subscription-based Haulage Exchange, which has more than 2,000 members, it has become an integral part of Steve’s business.
He said: "We look at the system everyday, to see if there is any work that we can give a quote on, and also use it for back loads.
"If we are going somewhere empty to collect something, I use it to see if anyone has got anything that they need to go that way."
In fact, Steve is so impressed by Haulage Exchange he has had their logo placed on two of his vehicles.
Steve Frowen Transport operates six vehicles, including two 7.5-tonne and two 3.5 tonne flat-bed trucks. The company is a Ministry of Defence approved contractor, and moves military vehicles around the UK and Europe. Steve Frowen Transport also works for Rolls Royce, moving engines for aircraft including Tornados, Eurofighter and helicopters.
TEG’s Haulage Exchange facilitates seamless electronic trading from order confirmation to invoice approval and payment.
Unlike other electronic exchanges, Haulage Exchange is fully managed with support staff available to help subscribers maximise the benefits of using it. It is this high level of customer service that helps TEG stay ahead of the competition, and it is something that is very much appreciated by subscribers.
Steve said: "I have a fantastic relationship with the guys down at Haulage Exchange. It makes a real difference getting to know their staff."
And unlike other electronic exchanges, subscribers only pay an up-front subscription fee – there are no pay-as-you-go charges or commissions charged.
Members also benefit from the security of TEG’s services. TEG vets its membership – including operator licence, credit and insurance checks – to ensure that all subscribers can do business with total confidence. Only once accredited by TEG will a member’s account be activated. This is supported by TEG’s peer review system where members provide e-Bay-style feedback on performance and payment.