“ONE PERSON CAN HANDLE THE PAYROLL FOR OVER 60 DRIVERS. THAT WOULDN’T BE POSSIBLE WITHOUT AXON.”
RAAF Logistics of Laredo, TX was planned carefully from its beginning in 2018. Before running a single truck, Rodolfo. the general manager, decided they would need powerful trucking management software to keep everything organized. We stopped in for an interview to learn why he decided on Axon Software and how the decision has worked out for them.
I'm Rodolfo Boehringer, General Manager with RAAF Logistics in Laredo, Texas.
I am Rodolfo Boehringer, the general manager of RAAF Logistics, based in Laredo, Texas. We are in the business of door-to-door service between Mexico and the US on dry-bed 53-foot trailers. We are mainly in the automotive business with 80% of our freight for that industry. Our customers want freight to go directly to factories in the US and not spend time at the border.
This company started as an idea between three friends. We were at dinner one night, and everybody worked in a different business. One of my friends was a trucking businessman in Mexico, and my other friend’s family were customs brokers in Mexico and the US at the Laredo border. The three of us each put in what we could and started the company. We initiated it in July 2018 with 10 new trucks and 15 trailers.
I ended up doing all the paperwork, creating the company, getting the DOT permits. One of my friends was able to procure the trucks and trailers with his Mexican company, but he needed a partner in the US, so that’s where the other friend came in. I was basically running the company myself, with an assistant, and I decided to get Axon Software right at the beginning.
How was it using Axon Software in the beginning?
There was a training period of 2 weeks. We had trucks in the yard that I needed to get moving, but I also needed to start learning and using the system.
These days, I know the system. I don’t get in there and use it every day, but the people I hire are using it. I know where to find anything we need in the Axon system.
Axon is a wonderful provider for us. We started the business in July 2018 with 10 trucks … and now we have 34 trucks, 62 drivers, and 125 trailers. The trucks never stop, they are all trading between the drivers. One or two are usually in the shop, but it’s really like we are running over 50 trucks.
We have 5 new trucks on the way as well. One of our philosophies is to have new equipment so they break down less often and our service is consistent.
We are mainly focused on getting known in the business as the company that gives the best service. We never say we are the best, but we want to be known that way by brokers and customers. I tell my people, “Hey, we need to give the best service. We need to always be on top and one step ahead on everything.”
How has Axon helped build your business?
The organization. I have my orders organized, and I have never lost an invoice. It’s money. You can run the reports and if an order is in one place, it’s [everywhere you need it].
When I spoke with the Axon team at the beginning, they gave me the option of hosting the system on my own server or their servers. I ran some numbers and said, I don’t want to have server problems. Some of my staff are in Mexico and we’d need to maintain multiple servers and connections. The difference in cost is worth it.
We’re working on setting up an EDI connection between Axon and one of our customers. I think it will be very important. A lot of our customers are asking for EDI. They want to get updates of their loads every 30 minutes or an hour. We are going to be able to set that up through Axon.
Another thing that helps a lot is doing payroll through Axon for 62 drivers. In the beginning I was doing it myself manually. We run it by miles per truck and we pay per week. One driver will probably be in multiple trucks, so I would run the miles and go into the order to see which driver was in the truck and do it all on Excel. It was easy to make mistakes, to double-pay drivers, and stuff like that.
Now, with Axon, we just run a report and get the numbers. One person can handle the payroll of over 60 drivers, and that wouldn’t be possible without Axon. With a little bit, we’ve got a lot. That’s the good part of having everything in one place.
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF EDI
EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) is a convenient way to transfer information electronically. It increases processing speed, reduces errors, and saves time. You can take advantage of EDI from within the Axon system to:
• Invoice customers.
• Accept or decline order tenders.
• Send shipment status updates.
The Generate EDI screen displays a list of outstanding invoices that have not yet been processed through EDI. You choose which ones are ready to be sent. You can review the report to check for errors before generating the EDI.
EDI is completely integrated with the Axon system so you can access the original trucking transaction or invoice directly from the Generate EDI screen.
Track Trucking Transactions
You can receive both order and ticket tenders via EDI. Once you’ve reviewed the tenders, you can accept or decline them electronically.
The Order Tender History screen is a useful way to review all the messages that have been sent or received for a particular transaction. You can also choose which employees should be notified of incoming messages.
More shippers are requiring shipment status to be updated by EDI. You can