Horizon International Distributors – Winnipeg, MB

“Axon lets us provide instant updates for customers which, as we all know, is very important.
“Instant information, instant access, and prompt responses.”

Horizon International Distributors is a transportation company based in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
As a company with multiple dispatchers, they needed a system that enhanced communication and allowed their staff to work together efficiently. Luckily, they found Axon and started using the software in 2007.  We spoke with the General Manager, Luc Dubé, to get some details of their Axon experience.

“I’m Luc Dubé, the general manager for Horizon International Distributors. We are a transportation company specializing in long-haul transportation of refrigerated commodities across Canada and the USA. We started using Axon on January 1, 2007.

Tell us about your experience with Axon.
“I find Axon to be a very efficient software. It’s very nice and it’s very easy to find information once you start getting used to it. It’s thorough.
“You can process a lot of information in the system. It’s a very big system. As of yet, we haven’t even used the full capacity. I’m hoping that eventually we’ll head in that direction.
“For what this company needs, it’s a very good system – a very efficient system.”

What problems has Axon helped you solve?
“Data entering for the most part. Some customers have very specific information they require, especially on cross-border shipments, such as AGR numbers or seal numbers.
“Axon has helped us provide places to store that information and make that information visible and presentable to the customer.”

How do your owner operators like their statements?
“Compared to what we had before I find them way more thorough and way easier to read. The statement is presented in a way where it’s all listed there. It’s very clear to read.
“Everything is itemized, separated, and totals are presented. I think it’s a very good system for them.”

How do you like the equipment revenue report?
“It’s interesting. We don’t break down the equipment on the trailer side of things, but on the trucks it’s very interesting.
“You can select a time frame, so you can see December to March are the toughest four months to make money – your fuel cost is up, your truck is always running because of the weather.
“It’s interesting to see your revenue differences when you select your time frames. I think it’s neat.”

Has Axon improved productivity in the office?
“It has definitely made things seamless in the sense that every terminal can access anything done by anybody else at the drop of a dime.
“The information entered is instant and you can control who has access to it, which is kind of nice.”

Using your numbers, have you found that Axon has saved you money?
“I would have to say yes. I’m thinking about what we had for a system before, and it wasn’t very efficient. There was a lot of time being lost in tracking drivers.
“There was a lot of time being lost in finding work orders that Employee A had done and placed somewhere, and Employee B was now looking for.
“With Axon, everything is centralized – it’s there. All your information can be put in. Whatever you choose to put in is available to everybody and there are places for that.
“The old system didn’t have places for that. If you had special instructions, you had to manually write it out or you had to verbalize it.
“Now it’s there, so whoever has taken over that order, it’s in the system. I would have to say it has improved our productivity for sure.”

Has Axon helped you with your customer relations?
“Well, we’re a six-man dispatch team. Dispatcher A books freight with the customer. That customer calls the next day to track something, and now Dispatcher A doesn’t have to be the one to report to him. Dispatcher B through D can grab that order and bang, it’s entered.
“The information is there. Based on what’s in the system, we can track that driver with a satellite and see where he’s at.
“You don’t need to wait for that particular person. If they step away for a coffee down the street, you don’t need to wait until he gets back to provide the customer with the answer.
“Axon lets us provide instant updates for customers which, as we all know, is very important. Instant information, instant access, and prompt responses. It’s very efficient on that side of things.”

Can you compare Axon to other vendors that you’ve dealt with?
“The previous software I had was very old and, by the time we implemented Axon, very outdated as well. I look at what we receive from customers, a fax or JPEG or something that comes through, and you can compare the information provided.
“I like the look of Axon, perhaps because I’ve been using it for so long and I’m used to it. I can’t imagine anything being any better by any means.”

If someone in the industry would ask you about your experience with Axon, what would you say?
“I have said that it’s a great system and I have recommended it. I’m sure that other companies have their systems that they’re satisfied with and so be it – that’s their prerogative – but for us Axon has worked since day one. I’ve got no complaints and anybody who has asked, I’ve made sure that they are aware that it’s a great system.”

Website: Horizon International Distributors

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