Northwest Arkansas-based J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc., alongside other members of the logistics industry – like BNSF Railway and Werner Enterprises – has joined a recent White House program to share freight data among major shippers to streamline supply chains and increase cargo velocity. The Freight Logistics Optimization Works (FLOW) initiative began in March of 2022, following which the number of partners has more than doubled.
“The Biden-Harris Administration is proud to bring together companies from across the supply chain in this first-of-its-kind initiative to share information and help move goods more quickly and cheaply,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “To keep supply chains moving and prices down, we must invest not only in our physical infrastructure but also our digital infrastructure, and FLOW is an important part of that effort.”
In the past few years, increased transparency and coordination has developed among major shippers, but they have generally been hesitant to share data. Participation in this program means that J.B. Hunt and other partners will voluntarily share their data in a national portal, allowing all partners to better understand current supply-chain capacity. Access to information on important factors such as chassis availability (equipment needed to move shipping containers) and dwell time (how much time a method of transport spends at a scheduled stop without moving) will now be opened. Shared information means more informed decision making, which directly translates into reduced shipping costs and reduced costs for consumers.
“The start of data sharing between industry and USDOT is an important milestone for FLOW. We look forward to continuing to collaborate with industry to develop this tool to enable industry to make more informed decisions that will improve the movement of goods along our supply chain,” said Supply Chain Envoy Gen. Stephen Lyons.