Home > All Mercertown Blog Posts, Contractor Web > Contractor Web Load Preselection

Contractor Web Load Preselection

Over the past couple of weeks, we have been testing the “Preselect Option”, on the contractor web.  What this means, is that very soon, all Mercer contractors, that are set up on the contractor web, will be able to preselect their own freight.  This is a big step for us, so I would like to take some time to discuss what to expect when we roll this thing out. 

First, let me discuss what “preselect” means.  When you see a load in the contractor web now, that you are interested in, you call your coordinator, and let them know of your interest.  Your coordinator will then find the load, make sure that your preferences are matching the load, and preselect you on the load.  When the load runs down the board, per our first in first out policy, the computer will automatically accept you on the load, when the load gets down the board to you.  Let me make that clear by saying that a preselection of a load, does not ensure that you will get the load.  It just simply means that you are putting your name in the hat for the load. 

Very soon, you will be able to do all of this with the click of a mouse.  To preselect a load, you will have to click on the order # of any load that you are interested in doing.  You will notice a difference in the bottom half of the screen.  What was blank before, will now have several questions listed.  In order to preselect the load, you will have to answer a series of questions, that ask you if you can scale the weight of the load, make the loading, and delivery dates and times, if you have the right tarps for the job, etc.  After answering those questions correctly, then you have two options.  You can either select to just be offered the load by your coordinator, or you can commit to the load when you are offered it.  If you select to commit, then you will be preselected.  Your coordinator will then get a message stating that you have been preselected on a load.  It doesn’t hurt to call your coordinator at that time to discuss the preselection.  If the load makes it down the board to you, then the computer will automatically accept you on it.

There are some ground rules that we need to cover.  These are the same rules that your coordinator has had to follow for years.   You are allowed to preselect yourself on as many loads as you want, at any given time.  Just remember, that whatever load gets down to you first, is the load you have to take!  For example, if you preselect two loads, out of the same location, and the shorter, less paying load gets down to you first, then you have to take that shorter less paying load.  Also, you can not switch, or “jump” agents boards to improve your position for a load.  Once a load starts running, the board positions are locked, and anyone who makes an attempt to jump boards, moves to the bottom of the list.  For example, you are on the Cleveland board, and Youngstown puts a good load in, you can’t just change to Youngstown’s board in order to move up the list.  If these rules are broken, contractor web usage may be suspended. 

People ask me everyday if we are creating this contractor web to get rid of coordinators.  That is absolutely not the case.  We hope that our contractors will use the system with their coordinator.  You can’t stay glued to your laptop all of the time.  We definitely don’t want you driving while looking for freight!  Hopefully this new option will work great for all of you.  We will keep adding more options to the contractor web in the near future, and I will try to keep you updated as they are created.

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  1. Chris Sampson
    May 4, 2009 at 9:02 pm | #1

    I would like to see an option where we can see how many trucks are on the board at each terminal,making it easy to deside what board to go on or to bounce to another area.

  2. jeff
    May 5, 2009 at 12:08 am | #2

    first i want to say that this blog site is a good idea and im hoping that it works out to keep us informed on info that we need to know. next i cant wait for the pre-select option to start. its long overdue. i feel bad everytime i call in and bug my coordinator cause they have alot on their plate to deal with and you have to remember that everytime someone calls in it takes them away from looking for freight for us. hopefully this will lighten the load for our coordinators.

  3. mary weibley
    May 5, 2009 at 3:27 pm | #3

    i would like to see the option where we could see how many empty trucks on each terminal where are then you can decide which board to go on i think would help the coordinator out then you don’t have to asked how many trucks are empty in that area.

  4. Jason Schaftlein
    May 5, 2009 at 3:39 pm | #4

    We will be adding more options in the near future. Board positions will be one of them, I just don’t know when it will be added yet. I’ll post it on here as soon as I find out.

  5. wayne
    May 5, 2009 at 4:43 pm | #5

    I would like to see a separate page for all the LTL freight that is posted instead of having to look through each state. The blog is a nice addition! Thanks

  6. Jason Schaftlein
    May 5, 2009 at 4:51 pm | #6

    Wayne, hopefully we will be able to add several freight filters to the contractor web. One for LTL’s is a great idea. Also we may add filters for trailer type, and a radius search, so that you can check freight within “x” amount of miles of your location.

  7. Larry Camp
    May 5, 2009 at 7:24 pm | #7

    Well I think also that being able to preselect freight is a great ideal and think it will improve things all the way around also I agree that seeing how many trucks and how much frieght moved in the last few days is somthing that might help, really like the blog.
    GO RED SOX!!!!!!!

  8. Scott Yates
    May 6, 2009 at 9:15 am | #8

    I think it would be great to be able to select multiple states, and look for loads by trailer type, pay, maybe even dimentions / weight?? or am i asking too much??

    I’d love to be able to match some LTL to the available space I have on my trailer.. We need more LTL freight.. Every penny counts today..

  9. marvin french
    June 3, 2009 at 12:42 pm | #9

    agents need to post all loads,on the load board,at all times,no exceptions,thats fair to all,contractors,ltl freight helps,but restrictions on loading with other freight is nearly,impossible, with all the agents approval, i tried several times,and failed ,leaving several feet of bed space left maybe list,with possible option,ltl ok to go with it,when it is posted

  10. Rick Wisehart
    July 31, 2009 at 4:32 pm | #10

    i enjoy reading your blog ,i havent been with mercer for last 1 and half years,i read comments about your board system,your preseclect web page,any way you dice it or slice it you still have to run every load down the board gaing nothing to the contracter, you can preseclect on 10 lds and if the 10 trucks ahead of you take the 10 loads what did gain. I miss the good people at mercer in the offices,and jim williams as a cordinator,but as long as you keep that old tired board system you will be sitting 2 to 3 days wainting on a decent ld to get to you .good luck

    • Jason Schaftlein
      August 3, 2009 at 9:25 am | #11

      Hey Rick, good to hear from you. I differ with your statements just a little. I don’t think that our board system is tired, and old. I think that we have one of the fairest board systems in the industry. If you want loads to run in no particular order and be handed out to the first or favorite caller, then this was probably not the place for you. I think quite a few contractors like our board system, and are very successful with it. You had a pretty good year last year using it yourself.

      Thanks for reading the blog though, and we’re glad to hear from you Rick. Good luck to you too.

  11. Scott A. Yates
    November 26, 2009 at 9:55 am | #12

    I have noticed that when preselecting a load, you are required to answer “do you have the trailer requested” The only answer is “yes”.. even though another type trailer may work on the load.. How can I show interest in a load on the web though I do not have the trailer type listed.. I.E. a “flat” load that will work on a step or RGN..

    • Jason Schaftlein
      November 30, 2009 at 8:25 am | #13

      Scott, we set up the contractor web that way so drivers did not commit on freight that is not designated for their trailer. We don’t want Flatbed drivers committing on SD freight, or in your case, RGN drivers committing on flatbed freight. If you see a load that you are interested in, that is not showing a match to your trailer type, then call your coordinator, or the agent before you commit. The problem with committing on freight that doesn’t match your trailer type is the agent sees a unit number accept the load by way of a message in the computer. The agent may then pick up the phone, and call a shipper to book the load, not knowing that a RGN has accepted a flatbed or a stepdeck load. They book the load as quick as they can. Then they find out after that the you don’t have the right trailer that is listed, and they have to call that shipper back and say…hey, I know I just said that Mercer would cover that load…by the way, can it work on a RGN? Most of the time the answer is no, then we have to give the load back.

      I’m not saying that we don’t want you to take flat and step freight Scott, we just need to ask the questions before you hit accept, and we book the load, so that we are not giving freight back to a shipper after we’ve booked it.

  12. Scott A. Yates
    November 26, 2009 at 9:57 am | #14

    Another glitch I see is tarping.. When I accept a load and NO tarp is required on the description.. In order for me to accept the load I must check Yes, I will tarp?

  13. Terry 11607
    January 2, 2010 at 8:56 am | #15

    Hi Yall!, Brand new here and glad to be aboard! I like the ability to be able to search through the loads with the given options to preselect,refuse,commit etc., although I can see room for improvement on the base board info itself. I mean, you see a load listed that grabs your interest and you match all the given info,so the first thing you do is click the load number and away you go to the rest of the load info only to find out that it wieghs too much, is in coils, or needs tarps. Now you click to return to the main listings to search for another load. Simple? Yes, BUT, this process slows the whole network down with a constant draw on server resources and could be avoided somewhat by placing a few more columes of info on the main seach page.
    Another glitch I see is one mentioned above about matching the trailer BEFORE committing. Last week there was 5 loads listed requiring an RGN. I have 2 super low stepdecks with ramps that enabled me to meet ALL of the dimention and loading requirments so I called the agent to verify that “would it work on a”?, I got the typical,”let me call the shipper and I’ll call ya back” answer. Call the next day, same answer,, 2 days one week and 3 days the following week, same responce, ” I can’t get the shipper to answer his phone”. All said and done,,, I watched as these GREAT paying loads ($4+pm), going to EXACTLY where I wanted to go, came and went while I waited on an answer by following the “guidelines”. Hard to commit if we can’t get the rest of the info needed by following ALL of the current “guidelines”.
    Not to step on anyones toes or to be interpeted as complaining, just a few OBSERVATIONS.
    Thanks for the opertunity to be a part of the most Elite group of O/O on the road today! Terry and Irene Ammon #11607

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