DAT Impact: A User Conference Unlike Any You’ve Attended

DAT Solutions’ second annual user conference will be held October 23 to 25 in Portland, Oregon, addressing the very real threats and opportunities facing the trucking industry.

ELD Mandate is top of mind

Probably the number one “threat” facing almost everyone in the trucking industry is the ELD Mandate. The question that has surfaced continually in the trade and financial press is how will the ELD Mandate affect capacity and how will that impact rates?

We’re fortunate to have as a keynote speaker at the DAT User Conference John Seidl, a DOT consultant and a 20-year veteran as an enforcement officer of FMCSA regulations. John has spoken around the country on the history and little-known nuances of the ELD to rave reviews, whether from the Medallion Group hedge fund to DAT’s own Executive Symposium.

What separates John from so many other speakers on the topic is that he speaks with facts. A lot of them. And he’s very pragmatic. Some of the eye-openers John has brought to our attention include:

  • What happens when a truck with a non-compliant ELD is pulled over, either for an infraction or, say, a simple trip to a weigh station? I’m not going to spoil the end to this story, which is about to be played out thousands of times after the December implementation of the ELD Mandate, but suffice to say it can—and will—have a material impact on your business.
  • A second head-scratcher has to do with how the ELD Mandate will affect—or should affect—practices at the receiving dock, particularly when a driver pulls in with “your” load and very little time left on his/her hours-of-service, which can no longer be fudged with paper logs. Again, no spoilers here, but if you think detention was an issue before and have been helpless or understandably reluctant to alert your shippers to problems at their docks, they will only be magnified by the ELD Mandate.
  • Finally, John Seidl’s talk will be accompanied by ongoing DAT research into the impact of the ELD Mandate on carriers large and small. We have been conducting a series of surveys with carriers and owner-operators that will give you a very real sense of the likely impact of the Mandate on capacity.

John Seidl is only one of many speakers we have at DAT Impact, so named because, as Eileen Hart, DAT’s VP of Marketing noted, “Our customers asked us to bring together leaders who will take a hard look at our industry, which is experiencing the fastest rate of change since deregulation. The ELD Mandate tops the list.”

In coming weeks, we’ll provide details on the other sessions, but you can see a schedule of speakers and classes by going to dat.com/conference.

Take advantage of early bird pricing of $695 for the best deal on any 2017 trucking conference.

Training sessions and labs

  • Fedex’s Ken Adamo of Fedex covering rate forecasting and pricing principles.
  • Hands-on labs taught by representatives from GlobalTranz, Circle Logistics, and others, that take a team approach to solving the challenges of rate-quoting to shippers and carriers, benchmarking your company’s rates against the marketplace, and balancing the need to find trucks at critical times—end-of-month, end-of-quarter, Friday afternoon, etc.—against margin pressures.

The labs will help users increase personal productivity and efficiency, reducing the number of times a load is touched, for example.

Based on initial responses, 200 to 250 companies are expected to be represented at the conference, roughly double that of last year’s conference.

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“If you get one nugget out of it, it’s worth the money. The conference doesn’t cost that much, and if you learn even one thing that saves you from losing money or helps you make money, why wouldn’t you do it?” – Rob LaForte

See how last year’s user conference saved a DAT customer from ransomware.