Video: Chris Henry discusses TCA Profitability Program, data sharing

FreightWaves Founder and CEO Craig Fuller interviewed Chris Henry, program manager of the TCA Profitability Program, about TPP and Truckload Indexes during Henry’s recent visit to FreightWaves’ Chattanooga, Tennessee headquarters. The pair hit on everything from data sharing to editorial collaboration.

TPP was created to be a performance improvement solution for the trucking industry.

“TPP is the combination of the Best Practice Groups, which have been around since 2002, so a group of 82 member carriers that get together and share good ideas and share their data with each other to get better,” Henry said. “That is combined, under the program, with inGauge, which is our data-sharing online platform.”

The program gives member companies to opportunity to gain credible financial data and standardized operational data, including operational KPIs like driver turnover and revenue per truck, from their peers. This data is intended to facilitate networking opportunities and lead to discussions about best and worst practices.

“Outsiders looking in don’t think these people are sophisticated,” Henry said. “That’s completely false. At the Best Practice Group meetings, each company shares a best idea, and the level of sophistication and innovative things these companies are doing--small, medium or large--is pretty impressive.”

Fuller asked Henry why companies would be interested in becoming TPP members when it means sharing data with potential competitors.

“Well, that is a big obstacle. When we first started the program, it was something I dealt with every day,” he said. “Truth be told, these days it’s not an issue. I haven’t had anyone bring that objection to me, probably in two years.”

When asked about the value of inGauge data over simply gathering free data from public companies via SEC filings, Henry said that, while inGauge does track 11 public trucking companies, it is only possible to obtain eight legitimate KPIs from SEC filings. This pales in comparison to the 230 KPIs private member companies report.

Fuller and Henry also discussed the recent partnership between TCA and FreightWaves, which has lead to TCA data being housed in FreightWaves’ SONAR, as well as the creation of Truckload Indexes.

“There’s never been the availability of benchmarking data, combined with the near-time data we get at FreightWaves that is really what’s happening in the last 24 hours, and what is really awesome about it is it sorta opens up the kimono of what’s actually happening and what this data means,” Fuller said.

Henry said he hopes the partnership provides more services to TPP members and ultimately leads more companies to join, creating a larger data pool and more credibility for everyone involved.

“One of the things I’m really pumped about with the partnership is the monthly Best Practices Playbook,” he said. “That playbook is going to combine economic data and manufacturing data with our internal review.”

Only TPP members have access to the monthly playbooks.

To learn more about Henry’s future goals for TPP and the FreightWaves/TCA partnership, check out the full interview above.