Portal Focus - May/June 2021
FOCUS ON TECHNOLOGY IN THE MOVING INDUSTRY
Going from Puzzled Looks to “We Want it Now”
By Max Kreynin, Voxme Software Inc.
Technology Partnerships Improve Transparency and Workflow
The biggest change technology has brought about in recent years is that it allows companies like ours to deliver simple, practical and affordable solutions to pretty much everybody in the industry when the industry needs it the most.
Only a few short years ago, rolling out a digital inventory to The MI Group took seven trips in total to visit each warehouse in U.S. and Canada, set up company-purchased iPads, and train staff on printing wirelessly. Not many companies in the industry could stomach the budget for the hardware and travel alone, not to mention implementation and licensing costs. Now, it takes an hour of training, any smartphone, and a couple of YouTube videos to get the crews going. There’s no hardware to buy and no servers to worry about. That’s what Apple, Google and Amazon afforded us.
We see a huge shift in industry where the actual moving-related work—be it surveys or packing or delivery—is being outsourced to smaller and smaller agents and contractors. Often times, a contractor packing for a big brand doesn’t have an office, so everything has to be electronic and mobile, and even labels need to be printed onsite. Regardless of who pays for the software license, the only way these types of companies can use technology is if it’s mobile and browser-based.
Ironically, regardless of the company size, everybody expects technology to just work and be always on, lightning fast, and affordable. Meeting these expectations in a traditionally low-tech industry like moving while it’s undergoing a huge change is challenging; constant change in the underlying technology platforms alone keeps our plate full. Seeing the industry embrace the new technology is rewarding, especially considering the looks we caught back at IAM 2004 (then HHGFA) when we honestly thought that every single mover would rush to buy a Palm Pilot. It doesn’t mean that we aren’t working on something cool. It’s just that we are a little preoccupied with scaling at the moment. We live in the instant gratification age, and our apps are measured against Uber and Dropbox.