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IT Bridges the Atlas Universe

11/6/2017

From left: Kenny McMichael, Manager, Help Desk, Ann Heathcott, Director, IT Network Services, JJ Mohr, Sr. Director, Information Technology, Ryan Parmenter, Director, IT Development, Joab Schultheis, VP & CIO, Bret Rauscher, Director, IT Development. During 2018, the IT team will work with Cornerstone Relocation Group to integrate shipment information with Atlas systems, making it more shareable with Atlas Agents.

From left: Kenny McMichael, Manager, Help Desk, Ann Heathcott, Director, IT Network Services, JJ Mohr, Sr. Director, Information Technology, Ryan Parmenter, Director, IT Development, Joab Schultheis, VP & CIO, Bret Rauscher, Director, IT Development. During 2018, the IT team will work with Cornerstone Relocation Group to integrate shipment information with Atlas systems, making it more shareable with Atlas Agents.

Atlas IT is rolling. With the introduction of an online customer portal this month, it has given  customers a single point of interaction with Atlas systems. It’s a one-stop-shop for tracking orders, making credit card payments, submitting and monitoring claims, and viewing shipment documents.

“We have additional features planned for the portal in 2018,” says Joab Schultheis, Vice President & CIO.

For one, corporate account users will have the means to generate an estimate based on their contract. And transferees will have a menu for push notifications — to control how and when they get information from Atlas.

The portal illustrates a focus on customer-facing applications. But it’s not the sole focus.

“We’re continuing the development of AtlasNet,® making upgrades to hardware systems, and working on data integration,” says Joab.

Here’s a quick look at what’s taking shape:

Planning Manager Developed in collaboration with Atlas Agents, this tool enables agent planners to more quickly put together loads and assign resources.  

Local Estimates Agents can set their local rates in AtlasNet Estimating and generate estimates on local shipments from a desktop or mobile device.

Atlas Canada IT has worked with Atlas Canada for a transition to AtlasNet (see story p. 15).

Infrastructure Standardization

Bridging the Atlas universe requires an infrastructure that is consistent from company to company.  

“We’ve performed extensive standardization with both Cornerstone Relocation Group® and AWG International,” says Joab. “Titan is next to join Atlas companies on a common platform for phones, email, and virtual desktops.”

The project includes migration of Titan systems and hosting them at HQ. The Titan Global Distribution help desk will also become centralized. All of it, explains Joab, will allow Titan to run more efficiently and engage more seamlessly with AWG entities.

Automation: Saving Valuable Time

Saving time is everybody’s goal, and IT is bringing automation that answers.  

“Since automation can bring substantial efficiency gains, it’s always a consideration,” says Joab.

Earlier this year, the IT team joined forces with rating and distribution services to automate invoicing. Before, if a client wanted images of invoices and supporting documents, they were manually assembled for emailing. Now, documentation is compiled and assembled automatically; clients receive the documents according to how they wish to view them.

“Automated invoicing is becoming quite popular,” says Joab. “It’s a real time-saver.”

Pre-rating view data feed is a new automated benefit for Atlas Agents. It’s based on data in AtlasNet at that time and lets agents see settlement results before shipments are complete.

“If an agent takes the feed into their own system, it can save them a lot of time by not having to rekey shipment data.”

IT joined forces with agents to develop the pre-rating view tool. Such collaboration is a hallmark of how the IT department works, to the benefit of all.

“Vision 2020 is fostering better communication and cooperation on IT initiatives across the Atlas World Group universe,” says Joab. “It’s exciting for us to be part of these developments and see the results.”  

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