According to Alex Walker, CEO of delivery systems management firm Cube Route, there is a growing trend among last-mile transportation companies to rely on an integrated, web-based hosted solution to handle a spectrum of key performance indicators.

Cube Route is banking that its hosted solution will be particularly attractive to clients that specialize in last-mile deliveries. According to Walker, such companies are more apt to adopt wireless technologies and web-based applications, which makes integration with a web-based hosted solution “a natural fit.”

“Non-integrated solutions from individual providers handle GPS tracking, black box ECM (electronic control module) solutions, fuel tax reporting, hours of service, routing field data capture services,” explained Walker. “Individually, it’s interesting but it’s not targeted to managing a delivery process.

“I like to use the analogy of a clock radio compared to a boom box with a clock duct-taped to it,” Walker continued. “At the end of the day, a fully integrated solution shares information across all of its processes. It shares workflow and each component is designed to work together. Ultimately that leads to much more robust functionality.”

Software companies that offer hosted solutions typically tout the affordability of a subscription-based pricing model compared to a system that’s maintained by the client company. “In a hosted solution, the cost of its support, hardware, upgrades and license fees all goes away,” Walker pointed out.

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