Big data is very important in staving off many crises. The COVID-19 pandemic is a great example of a crisis that is being addressed with big data. A growing number of countries and organizations are using big data to promote social distancing, enhance contact tracing and find new treatments.
Some occupations rely on big data for safety during this crisis more than others. These include freight operators.
With the COVID-19 pandemic in full effect, countless Americans have seen sweeping changes in their everyday lives. In the interest of protecting both themselves and others from infection, many people have limited the amount of time they spend away from home and adopted a variety of precautionary measures when out in the public. Furthermore, a large number of employers are allowing team members to work from home in an effort to keep them safe. However, not every member of the workforce is able to enjoy this convenience.
As essential workers, many freight operators are still expected to go about their usual routines, even as a highly-infectious virus sweeps the globe. Unsurprisingly, this can present a number of challenges for both operators and freighting companies. Companies looking to keep their operators out of harm’s way throughout these trying times can benefit from the following tips.
Big data has been used in the freight industry for a long time. A couple months before the pandemic erupted, I Think Logistics published an article titled How to Use Big Data in Freight Transportation? We have since discovered it is even more important in fighting the pandemic for people in this profession. Big data helps them ensure the safety of freight operators on their staff.
Invest in Reliable Supply Chain Management Solutions
It’s important to know where your drivers are at all times, particularly during a pandemic of this magnitude. Knowing the locations of all your operators ensures that you’ll be able to assist them at a moment’s notice and tell emergency personnel or medical workers where they are in the event of illness or injury. As such, safety-conscious are encouraged to invest in dependable automotive supply chain management solutions.
Provide Hand Sanitizer and PPE
There has never been a more important time to keep one’s hands clean. Since surface contact is among the ways the novel coronavirus is spread, it behooves safety-conscious companies to provide drivers with a steady supply of hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes. Freight operators don’t always have access to running water, and given the current circumstances, it’s absolutely crucial for them to be able to cleanse their hands in a pinch. Although many doctors prefer traditional handwashing to sanitizing, the latter is an acceptable alternative if soap and water are unavailable. In addition to washing their hands on a consistent basis, operators should disinfect bags and packages that come from stores and restaurants.
Operators should also be provided with personal protective equipment, or “PPE” – particularly face-masks and gloves. It’s particularly important for them to don this equipment when interacting with people on the road. Furthermore, whenever possible, operators should remain at least six feet away from others.
Encourage Operators to Pack Their Own Meals
There’s no denying that dining out is more convenient than staying in. Not only do you get to leave the food prep to someone else, you also get to avoid the cleanup. However, dining out during the current pandemic represents a substantial risk. Even restaurants that adhere to social distancing guidelines can’t definitively curb the spread of COVID-19 within their walls. With this in mind, consider encouraging operators to pack their own meals for the foreseeable future. Since food prep is likely to eat into their free time and personal finances, provide drivers with additional funds to make packing their own meals more feasible.
If certain drivers absolutely insist on dining out, encourage them to stick to restaurants that offer drive-through or curbside pickup. The desire to dine at restaurants while on the road is perfectly understandable, but given how uncontrolled the spread of the novel coronavirus has been in the U.S., acting on this desire is fairly risky.
Discourage the Use of Cash
Even in the best of times, money is among the germ-laden things people regularly handle. To help your drivers reduce their risk of coming into contact with potentially infectious cash or coinage, encourage them to take advantage of digital forms of payment. This not only limits their contact with money, but with potential virus carriers as well.
The ongoing threat of COVID-19 has prompted many of us to reevaluate the way we go about our lives. In addition to having a profound impact on countless individuals, the novel coronavirus has spurred many industries to become extra vigilant about safety. While freighting may seem like a profession that involves very little person-to-person interaction, any seasoned operator can confirm that is far from the truth. Freight companies looking for ways to ensure the safety of operators and clients would be wise to heed the advice above.
Big Data is the Key to Fighting the Pandemic in the Freight Industry
The freight industry is struggling to overcome the growing number of challenges posed by COVID-19. Fortunately, big data is proving to be a useful technology. Freight companies will use it to their full advantage in the months to come.
British could lead the world with first sovereing data exchange
The British island of Jersey, is ideally placed to become the world’s first privacy enhancing sovereign data exchange which will have huge benefits to the whole of the UK and beyond. Global Smart City expert and digital transformation consultant, Joe Dignan said the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of a combined data view of a population, and now is the time to establish a trusted, highly regulated and ethical exchange. He has called on the Jersey government to support the idea for the benefit of everyone.
A sovereign data exchange is a regulated infrastructure that allows data owners to store, share and monetise their data while retaining ownership and privacy.
‘If dealing with the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that single sources of data are meaningless unless synthesized with other data and visualised so we can understand it,’ said Joe.
‘Jersey is a microcosm where it controls the levers of the economy, legislature, government and security in an enclosed and agile environment that already has a digital twin. It also has all the necessary skills for regulatory and governance of that data, through its finance industry. This puts it in a unique global position to act as a data exchange which can bring huge health, economic and environmental benefits to the UK and elsewhere.’
Joe and a host of global technology experts, including Fintech titan, Nick Ogden, are discussing Jersey’s position as a sandbox for data innovation and digital testing at a series of free online events for Jersey Tech Week, 16th to 23rd October.
Nick set up what is believed to be the world’s first e-commerce business in the Island in 1994, before launching World Bank. Key figures from IBM, Ocado, World Bank, Carlsberg and Microsoft, will also demonstrate the very latest trends and developments for the industry, including insights into emerging tech trends – with fintech, artificial intelligence, digital health and creativity.
Joel Mills, the CEO of AugmentCity, will showcase the digital twin of Jersey, part of the United Nations’ United 4 Smart Sustainable Cities initiative, which is already helping to inform decision making.
‘Covid has been terrible for everyone, but it has speeded up the adoption of technology, from the simple need to work from home to the urgent need for good quality data and its use,’ said Joel.
‘The pandemic has shown that single sources of data are meaningless. This has opened up opportunities for us to make big improvements in the future with informed decisions using data from multiple sources and visualised for human understanding.
‘Using simulation in partnership with the UN’s smart sustainable development goals, allows us to connect humans and data like was never possible before. Breaking down barriers, fast tracking new technologies and reducing time and cost. If we are to beat the virus we need to embrace technologies and Jersey is playing a key role in prototyping this.’
EBANX announces expansion to Central America and the launch of EBANX GO within the LatAm region
EBANX, fintech company specialized in payment solutions for Latin America, announced the Push LatAm, an initiative that comprises expansion of its operations to new markets in Central and South Americas; the offering of hybrid services within Latin American countries; and the launch of EBANX GO, a prepaid card that offers a digital payments account in a partnership with Visa, to other markets in the region besides Brazil; all within the next 12 months. Push LatAm was announced this Thursday, October 15, at the Latin America Summit, EBANX annual event about business in Latin America.
EBANX expansion to Central America will start in Panama, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic and Guatemala. Paraguay, in South America, is also a destination. These five new markets will add to the current nine where the company already operates – Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Uruguay, Bolivia and Ecuador.
Besides the geographical expansion, Push LatAm also consists of model expansion. After having unveiled its local payment processing, EBANX will now launch its hybrid model, making things more flexible for global companies that have offices in the region, in a fully compliant way. By combining cross-border and local processing services within the same territories, this new model will allow local settlements for merchants, starting by South American countries.
And following a market trend of electronic payments and digital accounts that was accelerated by the pandemic in Latin America, EBANX will also launch EBANX GO in other LatAm markets. The e-wallet was soft launched in Brazil in the beginning of 2020, with a Visa card and a digital payments account, and has been growing steadily ever since. Around 60% of the current purchases made with the EBANX GO card are within EBANX merchants, proving the product can also work as a performance tool for them, besides being an easy-to-use payment option for consumers in the region.
“The Push LatAm initiative reflects our mission from the beginning of EBANX: to create access, to connect Latin Americans and global brands, always with a customer and product-driven mindset. Expanding our footprint and our solutions right now is the perfect realization of this goal. This will enable us to keep excelling in our commitment with Latin America: to be highly specialized in the region, translating each one of its countries and their singular cultures to businesses around the world,” said João Del Valle, co-founder and COO of EBANX.
StructureFlow’s accelerated 2020 growth sees expansion of international operations, customer base and new hires
Founded by former corporate lawyer Tim Follett, StructureFlow is a cloud-based software that was developed to address the difficulties and inefficiencies he faced when trying to visualise complex legal structures and transactions using tools that were not up to the task. The start-up was formally launched earlier this year at a time when many firms were, and continue to be, heavily focused on finding new technologies that enable efficient collaborative working.
Global growth and expanding beyond the legal industry
StructureFlow opened its first international office outside of the UK in Singapore earlier this year and has been running successful pilots of its visualisation software with prestigious international law firms. In addition to the growing customer base in the UK – the company is expanding internationally and is excited to announce that it will be onboarding customers in India, Australia, the Netherlands, and Canada in the next month.
With the belief that accounting teams, investment banks, private equity firms and venture capital firms will also benefit from access to StructureFlow’s visual structuring tool, the start-up has begun venturing beyond its legal customer base working with a small number of asset management and private fund businesses. This includes M7 Real Estate, a leading specialist in pan-European, multi-tenanted commercial real estate investment and asset management operations.
“We decided to expand internationally despite the pandemic as there is a heightened need for new technologies to support global organisations who are restructuring business models to adapt to the ‘new normal’,” said Alex Baker, Head of Growth. “Our product helps law firms and other financial institutions to work securely whilst working from anywhere and our growing Singapore operations will allow us to better serve our customers in Asia Pacific.”
New hires join the senior leadership team
With a background in enterprise software development, information security and a track record of many successful large-scale integrations, De Jong has held several prominent positions within regulated industries in both private and public sectors.
Oliver is a co-founder of Workshare Transact, the legal transaction management application that was acquired by Litera in 2019, having been previously a corporate lawyer with Fieldfisher.
Together, they bring decades of legal and technology leadership and expertise to expedite StructureFlow’s product development and will be instrumental in developing the software to meet the demands of the company’s broadening customer base.
Tim Follett, CEO of StructureFlow, commented on these developments, “The decision to further expand our presence across the legal and financial technology markets in Europe, Asia and North America is a logical step in our business growth strategy. The addition of Jean-Paul de Jong and Owen Oliver will bring first-class engineering, security and product expertise to our team, bolstering our ability to build and scale innovative enterprise products.”
Accelerator programmes to complement growth strategy
“Being accepted into two industry-acclaimed incubator and accelerator programmes is a crucial part of our expansion plans and will provide us with expert guidance to further develop our visualisation software. By utilising the expertise of industry experts, we expedite our plan of becoming a global platform for a range of organisations and stakeholders to visually engage with essential corporate information,” Follett added.
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