Crux Systems Insights

Vessel tracking done right

December 1, 2016 by Eric Klein |

Shipping

Back in September just before the Hanjin crisis broke out, we were busy building a new means for tracking container vessels arriving into the United States. It was this early development that allowed us to watch the impending doom happen in near real time when the Hanjin bankruptcy began to hit the logistics community.

Now with the release of our new dashboard service, I can explain a little bit more about what we built, why, and where we're going. It's all part of our general plan to build a community platform that provides unparalleled visibility into ocean cargo coming into the US and Canada.

Knowing the status of an import container is just the first step of many when it comes to the delivery of cargo. The next problem is the time of delivery. When will my cargo arrive, and when can I expect to get my cargo delivered? Well, if we only know that a container is on a ship, we miss a crucial piece. When does the ship arrive and when can I expect my container to be discharged?

It's one of those obvious things that is surprisingly missing in the supply chain, and it was a gap we knew we could bridge and in turn deliver a really great experience. To start, we show the vessel and arrival date in our status view.

container-shipping-vessel-update.png

One might think that this information is something cargo owners could get from the shipping line sites, but like marine terminals, the data they provide is inconsistent and confusing. Dozens of shipping lines all provide various levels of information, some of which is out of date.

No single source has been sufficient or effective for real-time, reliable container status information. So our solution, which has been tracking more than 3,000 port calls since September, has been to manage multiple sources of vessel and container tracking.

The end result: not only do we provide visibility into where your import containers are within the US and Canada, but we provide vessel and arrival information at a level of accuracy that is simply unavailable anywhere else today. So stop searching and get planning. Track your containers now.