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June01, 2015

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66 THE JOURNAL OF COMMERCE TOP 100 IMPORTERS AND EXPORTERS 2015 JUNE 1.2015 By William B. Cassidy TECHNOLOGY HAS EVOLVED rapidly since 2000, the year Ericsson introduced the first recognizable smartphone, but Mitch Wese- ley says the systems used to ship goods around the globe haven't kept pace. Many shippers, the logistics software pioneer says, still use transportation manage- ment systems designed when Windows 98 was new. Those aging TMS systems weren't built to handle the logis- tics challenges of this decade, Weseley, CEO of software company 3GTMS, said at the ALK Transportation Technology Summit in May. "We're looking at issues that we really didn't look at 15 years ago," he said. He cited the growth of multimodal transportation, the blurring of asset- and non-asset-based dis- tribution networks, increasingly complex domestic as well as international shipments and the relentless drive to cut costs. "On the shipper side, we see people moving more and more to complex routing, more inter- est in being creative," Weseley said. "We're doing much more complicated domestic moves. Domestic fulfillment is much more complicated today than 15 years ago." At that time, Weseley was CEO of Global Logistics Technologies, or G-Log, which he founded in 1999. Second-generation TMS systems, such as G-Log's Global Command and Control Center, "were great for solving the problems of the time, but the problems are different today," Weseley told technol- ogy specialists from trucking and logistics companies, shippers and other technology suppliers attending the ALK summit. "The issues we face have changed dra- matically, and the tools have not changed enough," Weseley said. "If you're looking at software designed 15 years ago, think of what PCs and TVs were like 15 years ago, and think what they're like today." Shippers that don't upgrade their tech- nology platforms will fall further behind, he warned, as they try to crunch big data, accommodate growing demand for mobile computing and more complex and more col- laborative supply chains, global and domestic. Weseley knows what the transportation software of 15, 25 and even 30 years ago was like, because he helped build it. He is widely recognized as the "father of transportation management systems" for his role in creating first- and second-generation TMS products. He launched his first software company, System Overload Today's logistics software doesn't come close to meeting the complex challenges shippers face

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