Supply Chain Now Episode 321

Prefer to watch the podcast in action rather than just listen?  Watch Scott and Greg as they welcome Jason Ashton with CallPass to the Supply Chain booth at MODEX 2020.

“Companies are still kicking tires on technology… Innovation and technology advancements don’t need to go from 0 to a million miles an hour if you think about just the progress we’ve made in the last 10 years.”

– Jason Ashton, President of the CallPass Companies

 

For all of the new technologies that are available to companies today, we are still working to solve many of the same operational problems we have faced for years. Can we track our assets? Are they where they are supposed to be? Do we know what conditions they are operating in? Are they generating the expected level of revenue?

Jason Ashton is the President of the CallPass Companies, CallPass Tech and CallPass M2M Solutions. They specialize in asset tracking, and help customers use their tracking data to better inform a wide range of business decisions.

In this interview, recorded live at MODEX, Jason Ashton talks to Supply Chain Now Co-hosts Greg White and Scott Luton about:

· How asset tracking can also support analysis of asset utilization, revenue generation, and the benefits of sensor integration

· How to best utilize and display transmitter data, including implications for maintenance schedules and knowledge about operating conditions and asset wear and tear

· Why the best use of technology results when a company has a problem and they need to find a solution, not when they find a new technology and they want to implement it somewhere in their ecosystem

[00:00:05] It’s time for Supply Chain Now Radio Broadcasting live from the Supply chain capital of the country, Atlanta, Georgia. Supply Chain Now Radio spotlights the best in all things supply chain the people, the technology, the best practices and the critical issues of the day. And now here are your hosts.

 

[00:00:29] Hey, good afternoon. Scott Luton here with you live on Supply chain. Now, welcome back to the show. We’re broadcasting live today from Moad X, the largest supply chain trade show in all of the Western Hemisphere. As our dear friend Ben Hare says, and it’s being hailed right here in the Supply chain City, Atlanta G-A Today Show, we are speaking with a Supply chain technology leader where we’re gonna be talking all about redefining asset tracking. So stay tuned as we look to increase your Supply chain Tech IQ. Only quick programing note before we get started here. You can subscribe to supply chain now wherever you get your podcast from. You know you don’t want to miss a thing, which is why most people subscribe, right? I’ve heard that. Yes. Including Greg’s favorite channel, which is YouTube. That’s right. As always. So when welcome in our fearless co-host here today in today’s show, Greg White serial supply chain tech entrepeneur, trusted advisor Supply chain Suvi at what’s in it right savon that French and Atlanta City Club tennis champion. Did you see that coming?

 

[00:01:37] I did not see it. Congratulate. Thank you. It was a team effort. That’s right. Let’s get a parking spot here. Yeah, neither one I got to play. I did. And I got to play.

 

[00:01:47] I should should have brought it in as right. Well, I think we’re in tune for a great show here today. We’ve really enjoyed our pre-show conversations with the call past team. And today, welcome in Jason Ashton, president of the Call Pass Organization. Jason, how you doing? I’m doing great. How about yourself? We are doing outstanding. Fantastic. Yeah, we’ve had a great day. This is day two of mutex resurgence. There’s a lot more people here today, which is great to see despite the rain here in Atlanta. Right now, they had to get inside. Absolutely. Oh, come on, man. I want to get inside when it rains here. Well, you know, as we’ve all seen, it’s like a supply chain circus around here, the drones and the robots and the technology and the best practices and thought leadership that we’re gonna hear from folks like Jason Ashton here today. It’s as captivating if you love all things supply chain this place to be. So, Jason, let’s before we ask where you grew up, because we’re gonna kind of learn more about you. Sure. Where did you come into the show from?

 

[00:02:45] I live in Tampa, Florida. OK. Our corporate offices are in Clearwater, Florida. OK, guys, about 20 minutes over the bridge from Tampa.

 

[00:02:52] Where else would a kid from Connecticut live? But Flourish logical right to transition. You go down for spring break, you never leave. Yeah. You just did it before you retired. Right. Right. Smart.

 

[00:03:01] So, Jason, now we’re gonna get into because you kind of tease this little bit for. Right. For me with love in terms of where you’re from. So tell us about where you grew up. And you got to give us an anecdote or a story or two about your upbringing.

 

[00:03:16] Ok, so born and raised in Naugatuck, Connecticut, small town outside of Waterbury, I think your biggest city references are gonna be Hartford and New Haven. Yeah. Thirty minutes west of Hartford and then twenty five minutes east eastern New Haven. Naugatuck at one point in time was the rubber capital of the world. Union royal headquarters. All right. As a result. As a result of Naugatuck River was when I was growing up, one of the most polluted rivers in the country. Sam. Right. And if you like, if you guys watch The Simpsons. Yeah, back in the day, I’m the three eyed fish. Believe we had a handful of those in the backyard.

 

[00:03:53] That’s a little anecdote. Are they harder or easier to catch if they catch you later, right? Yeah. Thank you. See you come in. Yeah. Yeah.

 

[00:04:01] So proud of Naugatuck, Connecticut. All right. So moving forward now, let’s talk about education. Sure. Give us, you know, where you go to school or give us a story. Give us a story about education for you jumped in to your professional journey. Uh, sure. I mean, that would graduate high school from Naugatuck High School and went on to go to Springfield College. Okay. All right. That was a recreation management major.

 

[00:04:26] So it’s a natural transition in the technology, political science. Did you play sports? You look like a baseball. I did. I did.

 

[00:04:33] I was a four sport athlete in high school. I played football, basketball, baseball and track. I was captain of the basketball team. And I went on to play college football all the time. Springfield When I played 92 and 96, we were a division two. Wow. So I played receiver, had the fortunate fortunate ending of a career my junior year when I cracked my for foreign. The career wasn’t going anywhere. But yeah, it was fun catching. Balls for a while. Yeah, all right.

 

[00:05:02] And then you had an excuse not to.

 

[00:05:03] Exactly. Yeah, I gave it a shot to come back senior. Just really was not with the owner. They don’t really pay at that college.

 

[00:05:10] I didn’t understand. They got to get with the times. All right.

 

[00:05:14] So Jason Wu, out of the four sports you played. Yeah. Is there one that you still play today for fun? I don’t read about enough injuries that are in my advanced, obvious advanced age. I tried to stay away from in-shore as much as possible if I could.

 

[00:05:33] I would be playing basketball on a regular basis when I find myself at the gym. I’m in between sets and I can see myself just staring at the court going. Why?

 

[00:05:42] So I do play some golf now. Okay, that’s good. All right. To get that for your back. Yeah. And stress.

 

[00:05:48] Okay. Let’s talk your professional journey now. Currently, your current role as president call pass or some really interesting developments will touch on here momentarily about that company. But, you know, we hear a lot of feedback from viewers, especially sit down with leaders and the presidents and CEOs of organizations. They want to gather kind of a sense of how you got to where you are, you know, from a four star all star athlete to president of a growing technology firm. So kind of fill in the dots little bit, especially with with critical roles.

 

[00:06:18] Yes. So it definitely wasn’t a straight line and it certainly wasn’t something I grew up with saying, hey, can’t wait to be the leader of a technology company. I mean, you got, again, high school in the late 80s, early 90s in the college. I mean, when I was in school there. The Internet wasn’t a thing. You know, going to the computer lab was really just going to work on a brother. Oregon Trail, right? Yeah. You’re just running your reports. So so tech wasn’t a thing for me when I was growing up. Mom, like I said, I was a recreation management major. I had the the vision that I wanted my life’s journey to be, you know, working in resorts, putting on activities and just having an overall good time when I got out of college. I got offered an opportunity to work for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in a sales role. Really? Yeah. 1997’s own seats and fill seats, club seats, etc. So I was part of their first outbound sales team and I was like on the sales thing. Makes sense. All right.

 

[00:07:12] And so something. Get a check. Yes, it does. So before you give you your checks. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. So now that thirty five thousand dollar dream I had got bigger. Yeah. Yeah.

 

[00:07:24] So that’s how I got my feet wet in sales. And from there I went on to which is part of the most pivotal role I had. I was going the payroll sales which again, not something you wake up going. Can’t wait to be in payroll sales. Yeah. What it did was it really opened my eyes to the businesses around you that you’re not aware of and how people are generating revenue and making money and you’re signing them up for a simple service and they’re telling you, you know, hey, what do you do? Wow. Never heard of that or wow. This is really interesting. And it really that was the stepping stone into my technology ventures. We I signed up a group who was running a software company with a suite of services to integrate supply chain, if you will, mainly from a sales accounting and overall inventory management system. Okay. So we signed them up. I had a great conversation. They called me back two days later to the office. I thought they had a problem with your payroll service and come to find out they wanted to recruit me to become the head of business development.

 

[00:08:25] No. So I was like, sure, always an ulterior motive. Right. So this makes sense. So I I actually took the opportunity. And within my first six months, we integrated the platform with at Rhodes. If you guys remember at Rhodes back in 2001. Okay. All right, then. In Web, Tech Wireless were probably the first commercial g._p._s platforms. That interesting. That’s when devices were good and bulky. Yeah, right. Yeah. You know, five six hundred dollar giant pieces of viaducts. Hundred. Yeah. They were well like it. Yeah. So that was my first. You know I remember I to this day I can remember going home and told my mother I got this great job of working with these g._p._s companies and she’s like GPE what Ryder. Where knows. There were no smartphones. Anything along those lines.

 

[00:09:11] Tom turkeys or anything? Yeah.

 

[00:09:13] Yeah. So I think that was the most pivotal role I had because it it really got me immersed in software, right? Software platform sales and then the evolution of that technology with the g._p._s ad and really piqued my interest.

 

[00:09:28] And I you know, I didn’t have a career path from there other than going just continue my software sales journey. Couple guys that I knew had owned a finance company and they started a company called Call Pass Tech and it was gonna be a g._p._s supply company. Okay. Specifically for subprime auto finance vehicles. All right. So loose translation, buy here, pay here vehicle. Franco, the correct insert device. Protect collateral. All right. Through conversation and through my experience in that little stop off, I had the software slash g._p._s world, I guess that qualified me to spot all it takes to take control of a startup company. So I was very fortunate for the opportunity back in 2008. And this is where we are today. Now you come along way since 2008. We really have here. We really have.

 

[00:10:21] All right. So before I want to make sure on same page here. So the company what what does a company do today? You kind of gave some some background into maybe the genesis. Was it you today?

 

[00:10:32] So if two companies today call past tech is still the parent company. In 2013, we spun off a subsidiary called Pass Them Solutions. And the MNM Solutions Company is wholly designed around asset tracking. So we designed a platform to integrate with a multitude of different device types and track a variety of of assets. All right. We didn’t get into it to be a fleet tracking company or we’re going to track trucks or we’re going to track service vehicles. We looked at and said, we can do that. We can do the dots on a map. We want to start getting into what’s behind the truck. What’s what’s on the chassis machinery. Right. Equipment. All right. So we’ve been focused on that since 2013, really taken the platform to new levels, integrating with other not only g._p._s devices, but sensor technology. We’re partnered with AT&T and Verizons. So we’ve got the telecom side, but we’re really starting to get into more Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, investigating Maureen networks, things like that.

 

[00:11:36] Wow. And so.

 

[00:11:40] You do the physical devices as well as the technology or so always we supply by.

 

[00:11:45] So we’re at End to end solution, right? And again. Ah, I gotcha. Platform which is buy here, pay here. All right. We’ve been doing that since 2008.

 

[00:11:53] Okay. And you’re still doing that? We’re still doing that today.

 

[00:11:56] Yeah. So, I mean, we finished last year. I think we deployed 81000 units, one 81000 unit. Yeah, that’s pretty much the last five year run rate. It’s between 80 and 90. Okay. All right. All right.

 

[00:12:11] That’s how many of your customers. That’s how many. Yeah. Here, pay your car.

 

[00:12:16] Yeah. So I got about six thousand buy here. Pay here. Dealers or finance companies that are still utilizing our service to some degree. They may not be active customers, but we’re still servicing their device. Gordon And if you if you take both platforms are our asset tracking platform is an acronym. It’s Lonna. Okay. So l-i-a-n-e l-i-a-n-e. Okay. All right. Lana Turner, like 100 turned out. Yeah. And we tried to use her like likeliness for the logo. Didn’t work.

 

[00:12:44] Her children didn’t appreciate. Yeah. Like they should. Right.

 

[00:12:47] So maybe if you look at both platforms we wanna.

 

[00:12:50] Is watching. Yeah. Go make your payment.

 

[00:12:53] We have deployed over 8000 units on both platform.

 

[00:12:56] A thousand units on a hundred thousand two hundred thousand. Yeah. Eight thousand. Sounds good. Couple years ago, 8 1 0 0 karma. 0 0 0 Gates.

 

[00:13:07] Wow. Well, so you know, the walk into the hall. You know, I think you’ve described a lot of it, but there’s probably.

 

[00:13:15] It sounds like you you’ve got a core to your business, but there’s lots of peripheral problems that it sounds like call.

 

[00:13:21] This is this is my favorite question. His is and I think I tip my hand a little bit earlier, but if I’m walking down one of these walkways or through the halls in my business. What is the pain that I’m feeling?

 

[00:13:34] What are the key words going through my mind that that would have me go, oh, my gosh, I need to call. Call. Pass up that. Right. So what?

 

[00:13:43] What is the problem that you saw there? I think the number one thing we do when it comes to asset tracking is solve the utilization problem. All right. What we find when we’re talking to our customers and potential customers is that the term high value asset can run across a myriad of different products. Right. Or machinery, equipment or whatever the case may be, whatever. All right. And what happens is you have this turn rate and the turn rate is tied directly to profitability. All right. And if you’re not profitable, you can always go back and say it’s because X, Y, Z wasn’t where it was supposed to be, or if X, Y, Z was where it was supposed to be, it’s generating revenue. Yeah. And if you go back in and you guys been in Supply chain for a long time, just go back to the initial fleet tracking aspect of things. Dots on a map. I want to know where my vehicle is. And then that evolves too. We can get some diagnostic information off of this so we can actually start, you know, being more efficient with our fuel and our tires and everything. Well, the assets kind of got left behind.

 

[00:14:43] Right. And I’ll use an example. We do a lot with scrap and recycling companies. All right. Those bins. All right. Oh, yeah. g._p._s technology. There is always that aspect to it from an asset standpoint of, hey, what happens if it gets stolen? Hey, what happens if it’s lost? Right. And then the RLA was the simple math of, hey, that cost $10000 to build. You have a hundred of them. Therefore, you have X on the books. Right. If I put this device on it, I’m going to protect you from a loss. We like to approach it slightly different. All right. Yes. That has value to it. Cost you ten thousand dollars. But that’s suppose to be on a job site Monday through Friday and it’s supposed be generating revenue. All right. And even if it’s a thousand dollars a week. All right. Yeah. Well, at the end of a year, that’s fifty two thousand in revenue. Now you have one hundred of those. All right. How many were on their job site? 100 percent of the time. All right. So if you’re walking down a hall and you have that problem, utilization is typically the number one problem we solve.

 

[00:15:38] You know what to call call passed now because it’s crystal clear to me. Go ahead. No. I think you just laid it out. Yeah. No, I get it. You don’t. I mean. Yeah. So let’s I want to dove a little bit deeper, sir. So I am by no means the asset tracking expert. So we’re gonna pick your brain a little bit more that that specific topic before we do. One of our favorite questions as we sit down with these senior leaders, presidents and CEOs, is where does it where do you spend your time? Just because everyone a lot of folks make assumptions, right?

 

[00:16:09] Yeah. I mean, everybody thinks the president is a job. Yeah, but president could be a multitude of jobs with a multitude of specialties, depending on what your gifts are and then your team’s gifts. So what do you what do you spend your day doing? Don’t you dare say playing golf.

 

[00:16:24] Right.

 

[00:16:27] I spend a lot of time in the office. I really do. Most of my time it’s it’s around planning, implementation, training. Rinse and repeat. Yeah, right. We had a we got a great staff were. Rowing company, we just crossed the 45 employee mark. Okay.

 

[00:16:43] All right, so we’re still a small operation, but all big companies starts small, robust, nimble, nimble.

 

[00:16:49] They all the above. Now we you know, we’ve got massive partners and you see how quickly or how nimble you really are when decisions can get made like that. Yes. But I spend a majority of my time to just, you know, rinsing and repeating the strategic vision, making sure everybody is trained properly and we can implement and go to market.

 

[00:17:08] I love it. Okay. How many folks out of curiosity in the Tampa office? I mean, we talk a lot about remote enterprises these days.

 

[00:17:17] Yeah, I’d say out of the 40 with forty. I’m gonna go with 39 or. Wow, hospice. That is a big share in the office. Yeah. The office, like the environment has has changed over the last three years. We’ve we spent a lot of time over the last three years really kind of changing the corporate culture. Yeah. And what the office environment was like when we were a smaller org. It was it was all sales was all sales all day. So very phone room oriented. Yeah. Not quite a boiler room but close to a. Yeah. Everybody there was coming in all loans. Right. But now with the applications as robust as they are, we have a tech team in-house.

 

[00:17:57] Right. We have a V.P. of engineering now where we didn’t have that. Yeah. Before we’re integrating all these new products and services and our customer support has been built up as well. We’ve you know, I think we’re 6x what we were two years ago, just some customers. Maureen. Right. So, you know, having everybody in the office, it’s building a camaraderie. It’s actually people smiling, coming out of the office. And with the technology, like you said, I mean, you know, your teams meeting away if you’re remote.

 

[00:18:24] Yep. How how as as you think about how the culture has changed, I wonder how much the product or the the the output of the product has changed. So, you know, in 2008 it was pretty simple. Where’s the car? So we can go get it if we need it right if single use case. But there’s so much so such robust data available through these g._p._s devices now. What kind of extra, you know, extension or or orders of magnitude of change of you seen in that?

 

[00:18:58] I’ve seen a tremendous amount even just over the last 18 months or so. Ah, ah, ah. Manufacturers, ergo technologies. Not sure if you guys are familiar with them, but we’ve we’ve been partner with them since 2011. We love their products. We love we love their organization. We love the way our teams interact and what we’ve seen. And, you know, you reference our culture, having more people touching the products or supporting customers. They’re learning things about the product we didn’t even know we had.

 

[00:19:26] And when you when you take that input. Yeah. And bring it back to either the manufacturer or our team. Right. Yeah. It’s it’s sparking creativity. We’re getting more creative and how we’re utilizing the platform there and just that type of g._p._s or transmitter data. All right. And then how we’re displaying it. And then you take you know, we’re in Asia cloud shop. Right. So our applications in Asia. How do you take those tools inside of their, you know, machine learning? Not quite a–i. Yeah, it just taking that information and taking that analytical spin to it. Rightwards, not just the dots on the map.

 

[00:19:59] Right. What can you do with those dots? Exactly. Yeah. Right.

 

[00:20:02] So if we look at current state. Right. And it is really interesting when we all spoke about just how far we have come from a sensor and asset tracking standpoint. You know, we talked about fears back when L.L.Bean added a sensor in their jackets and shoes to gather information on when things were worn in and what temperatures and stuff in it. That is absolutely fascinating. So broadening that out and and in a little different vein of asset tracking gordie’s spoken and a lot to kind of the current state right where the industry is today. Elaborate a little bit more, especially from a transportation Logistics and supply chain standpoint. What was it look like today?

 

[00:20:45] Asset tracking. I I think we’re on a back side of the fleet focused asset tracking there, where if you look at it, I’ll reference the Driscoll report from last year. The Driscoll report. Yes. OK. Club Driscoll does a giant report every year on the state of g._p._s tracking.

 

[00:21:07] We need action and report. Someday we’ll get it. Ashton put roast Sunday and go back to the Springfield College Computer Lab. Fire that right up i-Pad now.

 

[00:21:19] Yeah, 50 50 percent of all devices sold last year in fleet space were renewal based, right? Or or upgraded 2G 3G evolution, right? Yeah. So you’re saying. PARTICIPANT was just swapping out devices. So that tells me you’ve got a pretty mature marketplace. All right. The assets rack placement market now. Right. So the asset tracking side of things is only about 15 to 20 percent penetration. Okay. All right. So if you if you start with trailor Sarr biggest customer is FedEx Freight. Okay. All right. So we’re in the midst of a 24000 unit deployment with their with their trailers, with our solar power device. Wow. All right. And our line of vision product. All right. And what what we’re starting to see is the the in rate for exploration. And I was speaking at a fireside chat earlier today. We talked about IAPT and Supply chain asset tracking Sheer. There’s there’s still very blurred lines there. Right. IAPT means something a little different to everybody. To this day, when I hear AYATA, I go right to Mike, my nest thermometer. The smart home, the fridge telling me that you need right for it, you know. So I knew I otey more consumer centric. Yeah. All right. But then you walk around here and it’s IATSE for days. I mean, the technology in here is cool, whether you’re in machine manufacturing or not, robotics, everything that goes along with it. So when I’m looking at asset tracking now, I’m seeing companies open up to the idea of the sensor integration.

 

[00:22:45] All right. And having multiple products or multiple devices and sensors talking to a single platform. So we’re spending a majority of our time and development efforts on that platform, being capable of ingesting data points from a variety of different products. Right. So again, core g._p._s products. But, you know, Bluetooth beacons, Laura Network communications. Right. Or the small sensors where I don’t see asset tracking to your point with all being right. I don’t consider that asset tracking. That’s a form of tracking, right. Consumer focused Mortons or. Yeah. But when when you’re talking about high value assets, that’s going to mean something different to everybody. And where I see the current state is is. People really looking at generators now, portable generators. I don’t think five years ago that we’re particularly now. Well, yeah, that that wasn’t considered an asset. It was just our generator. And the cost of doing business was that generator got left on a job site and. Oh, well, yeah. Or it got picked off or whatever the case may be. Yeah. Now, not only is the generator being considered NASA, what else can we get out of the generator? If we had a G.P.S. device on it, is there anything we can do from a PIN code standpoint? Can we troubleshoot? Right. What other information can we get? So runtime all of a sudden? All right. When you’re using our products, you can get runtime service well beyond tracking, correct?

 

[00:24:13] Well, beyond just kind of where it is.

 

[00:24:15] It allows you to understand the operation and wear and tear of the device. Yes. To understand this thing’s been running for 40 hours and it’s its service cycle is 80 hours. So it’s halfway through its service. Hundred percent like the unrepresented.

 

[00:24:28] And tie that back to equipment leasing contract, right? Right.

 

[00:24:32] You got the you rented a bulldozer from Home Depot and you sign a contract that it’s all just 40 hours. Yep. Right. Well, it’s 72 hours later. That guy’s at his brother’s house with that, you know, dredge in the lake in the back.

 

[00:24:45] Yeah. All right. You’re picking a few beers. Haven’t thought. Yeah. Yeah. He doesn’t like a bag. Yeah. All right. All right.

 

[00:24:52] So you’ve already touched on. You mentioned when you customs earlier in terms of some of the things you’re doing together. What other. Especially for non asset tracking, which, you know, that phrase doesn’t do it justice in terms of what your company does. Not an asset. Yeah. Is this more what I’m hearing you do? When I first as we were prepping for this interview and I really thought about asset tracking, I’ll speak in clear just sheerly location. Where is it? Right. You want to prevent that? To prevent loss of it. But what I’m hearing you suggest is the operational information you garner from your what you deploy on on these different units goes far beyond just asset tracking.

 

[00:25:36] Well, I mean, our operational efficiencies and that sort of thing you can do with IATA. You talked about tying it in with IATA, right? Yes. You start to you start to feel vibration in the device. You communicate that backup.

 

[00:25:49] Yeah. Ryder percent. And I think the biggest thing and we were talking about your former ventures. Right. All the planning is great. All right. And, you know, increase utilization, operational efficiencies. Not buzzwords. Right. But there used a lot. And I think the biggest thing we’re seeing right now is monetization. How am I monetizing my assets, whether that’s trailer, whether that’s a 40 yard. Right. Scrap roll off container. Right. All right. Or if it’s a generator or something along those lines, you’ve got it out.

 

[00:26:18] If you’ve got a bulldozer, which is my favorite. Yes. My favorite example, if you got 400 hours a week, you know, are you fully utilizing that piece of equipment for 400 hours a week?

 

[00:26:28] Absolutely. And what we’re seeing is, is. Companies are still kicking tires on technology. I was at a leadership conference and somebody made a joke from AT&T that the door swung open one day in a tech meeting, a guy walked in and said, Hey, what are we doing with drones delivering pizza operated by blockchain? And the guys and the guy smiles and says, we’ll get right on. Yeah. German left the room. They closed doors at every forget with that guy. Yeah. Yeah. He clearly was listening to a podcast on the office today. Right. So you know, the innovation and the technology advancements. All right. They don’t need to go 0 to a million miles an hour if you think about just the last 10 years. You know, 10 years ago, you know, where was the iPhone? Yeah. Right. Right. So the leaps you’re going to make. You know, naturally. And unless, you know, in the next year, two years with all this technology and all the sensor integration, that’s where I see asset tracking really going. We have a product that we’re in test phases right now. You know, created by Zadow. All right. Which we think’s going to really change the transportation game when it comes to load recognition and surface volume recognition. I have a trailer right door. Door opens immediately, takes an image and gives you a calculation of what the percentage of surface volume is either full or remaining.

 

[00:27:52] So what do you do with that percentage of surface volume? You estimate whether they’ve made their first drop or depending on what stage of the cycle it is.

 

[00:28:01] Right. So if your if let’s just say it’s at a dock and someone says, come pick this up. What if instead of sending somebody out there pitching it and driving across country, what if you could push the button on an application and saw that it was only 30 percent full and that load shouldn’t have left the dock?

 

[00:28:17] Got it. All right. So own that. And they connect you with somebody we know, by the way. Okay.

 

[00:28:23] Come on.

 

[00:28:27] So let’s move from current state to future states. Let’s talk about Ian. You’ve already come touched on some of this stuff. Clearly, as an organization, you’re already planning kind of for what’s next. The industry certainly is figuring out how to make better use of modern day and beyond asset tracking for future deployment applications. What what’s a couple of things you think is around the corner for for the asset tracking world?

 

[00:28:56] I think it’s going to be inside out. And what I mean by that is, again, playing around here. You have all this manufacturing taking place. All right. So you have things coming off conveyor belts. You have these boxes. Where are they inside your facility? When did they leave? Where are they going? Right. So End to end tracking solutions right now. g._p._s focus companies like us, we lose capabilities inside. Right. And depending on what you’re you know, whether it’s RFID, whether it’s Bluetooth. You know, I’m not sure how up to speed you guys are on your networks. All right. Me? None at all. OK. Well, this is all Indore technology is your ability to go track point A to point B inside a facility. All right.

 

[00:29:37] So whereas which is rapidly changing with five GS, we’ve talked about, well, these conversations and and Bluetooth and IATSE devices and things like light fixtures and things like that. Right. Because you need you need three points to triangulate off of. Correct. In which g._p._s it’s you know, it’s sometimes blocked and in the top the taller or in this case the deeper underground. This building is, the harder it is for g._p._s to be accurate absolute. So you have to use other other waypoints to help triangulate.

 

[00:30:05] I like that, Greg. Man, you looking for a grid?

 

[00:30:09] Obvious t way he waited till episode 3. Yeah. Yeah. The Sheer. Some of the stuff that we got, we got a spot.

 

[00:30:17] Well we at my last company we use that because we were tracking the work in a warehouse. Yeah. Or in a tall building and we had to figure out alternative ways to figure out where you are. And our work, our device also allowed you to drop a pin and say the work is over here, empty this trash can. Okay. So we use g._p._s to whatever extent we could. And then we had to use an amalgamation, as I’m sure you’re doing, of different technologies to try to to triangulate where the worker is in the work was.

 

[00:30:47] Yes, right. And that’s where I see the future of our company, not so much the industry variety. And that platform being deep and wide. Inside out, right inside out. And we want to be able to communicate with g._p._s and the other ancillary technologies that allow you to go inside out versus. Okay. Great. I can track your trailer, but once it comes off your trailer, I’m out.

 

[00:31:08] Right. And if it and you need to know things like is it on, you know, when it went into the let’s say it went into the Macy’s store. Yeah. Right. We went into the loading dock. Is it on floor 2 or floor for that sort of. Yeah. You can actually find those things out. UPS. Well. Right. So. Okay, so that’s cool. That is incredibly valuable and applicable to a even broader range of applications than you have.

 

[00:31:35] You have application to today and more importantly it it’s going to connect the bigger companies, especially where they have certain divisions that don’t communicate with each other. Right. With the problem that someone’s having on the transportation side is not the same problem that the guy in the manufacture. Floor is here. But if you can solve one for the other, they start communicating. And if you can provide the solution to go inside out, everybody becomes more efficient. Okay.

 

[00:32:02] All right. So if we had a device tracking this conversation, this asset is going to show a hard right turn because we’re going to part from the world of asset tracking. Okay. We’re gonna go broader. OK. Because I love free. Jason, you that the supply chain thought leader to the technology thought leader to weigh in. Yeah, we’ve got a global supply. In the end, supply chain world technology world business world is rapidly changing minute by minute. So out of all of that noise of developments and noise of innovation, disruption pick. You said they weren’t cliches, but pick your favorite word there. What’s one or two things that you track? No pun intended. More. You know, you’re tracking notthere radar personally.

 

[00:32:44] Yes. There is some worse things I’ve had to make on.

 

[00:32:47] Yeah, but what what are you really from a subject matter standpoint or a development standpoint or innovation standpoint? What are you reading and learning and talking about more than others right now?

 

[00:32:58] It’s a very difficult question. When when I’m not focused on what we’re doing, right. All right. I am tracking the global chain. All right. I’m fascinated by how small the world’s become. Yeah, I’m still in how technology is connecting everything that we do. So I’m trying to stay current on our different communication methods. The different communication pass. Not only so, we’re up to speed on what we can integrate with, but just how everybody in the world is interacting. And that’s really not a not very big on the political side of things. Right.

 

[00:33:34] But you have to pay attention to whether it’s tariffs and where your materials and supplies are coming from. And emotionally now. Right. And what is that impact? And we’re all going through it right now with the Cauvin 19. And Bryan, just so many different operations are being completely shut down. Forget about livelihoods. Right. It’s disrupting everything that we’re doing, even if you don’t think you’re affected by it. You’re probably not paying attention.

 

[00:34:00] Probably not leaving your house.

 

[00:34:02] Well, I’ll tell you what.

 

[00:34:05] So you were on a panel session earlier today here at mutex. Yeah, right. Yeah.

 

[00:34:11] Well, fireside chat. Fireside chat. So I have a question for that was. I was going to ask if there was actually I brought marshmallows and was dog on its way. Yes.

 

[00:34:21] Who was it a what was a general theme of the fireside chat. Was it was it, you know, drill down and asset tracking?

 

[00:34:27] Or was it you know, it was very specific to asset tracking. And kind of what we’re talking about here. You know, where where have you been? Where are you now? Where are you going? Where’s the industry going? There it was. You know, those fireside chats, it’s it’s it’s one on one. There wasn’t a ton of questions afterwards other than on the advancements in technology. And some people wanted to know our booth number so they could go and see what we’re doing.

 

[00:34:51] Ok, good. You know, so we’ve got a little foot traffic from it. Oh, good, good. So you’re a good.

 

[00:34:59] Please, one quick question. So, too, you talked about inside. Well, thank you. You talked about inside the four walls, but outside the four walls and there I think we have failed to hit on one key word here. Guess what key word I’m thinking of effin surprise lost chain.

 

[00:35:16] So so, you know, blockchain is in some cases a hammer looking for a nail. But there are some significant applications. And I think because of that asset based nature of what you’re doing. There is some cost effective capability there. Are you. Have you seen any buddy around here or anybody that you have engaged with or maybe Target where you combine the two technologies of asset tracking and blockchain?

 

[00:35:45] So I haven’t seen anything here yet. All right. I haven’t walked the show. Yeah, that’s right. What tomorrow is gonna be for me. But again, you gotta remember a recreation management degree. I’m not the tech guy. Right. My engineers, my V.P. of engineering specifically. She’s very deep in the blockchain right now to see what it could hold for us. I understand the technology. I don’t know how we fit into that quite yet.

 

[00:36:13] You’re not alone. And I think. Well, that’s that’s right. And look, let me let me. As a political science major. Okay. Right. Which is just a shade below recreational. So I don’t tell you that here. I think I think of blockchain very simply as this. It’s an ear, an irrefutable record. Yes. Right. So if you think about the hand-off, let’s say you’re old business case. A car gets repo’d. Yeah, it’s on somebodies flatbed. Yeah. Right. And you know that it’s on that flatbed. But the handoff isn’t isn’t recorded and it isn’t you know, it is maybe recorded but maybe recorded on paper. Mm hmm. Right. Well all the blockchain does is it creates an immutable record that says hey Billy Bob dropped it off at Klemm could diddle hoppers. Yep. Buy here, pay here. You know the klemp. Yeah. No, I’ve actually bought cars from Spot and so I could see you communicating or facilitating that in some way. I mean, that’s I think of blockchain and probably its simplest its simplest application, which is verification of chain of custody.

 

[00:37:25] Yeah. It’s in the UN incorruptible nature of that. That’s right. Is what’s key. And in in the car dealership world, think about all the things about when you go and buy a new car. Think about the mountains of paper that are being printed out. Yeah, right. In some cases still in bubble jet printer. Right. If you could do that in blockchain. And and yeah. Facilitate that chain of custody transaction from the finance company, the bank through the dealerships, through the FBI office door. And you’re leaving without papers. Yeah. Right. Yeah. So that it’s a fascinating technology and I think there’s a use case for in everything that’s going around. Yeah.

 

[00:38:04] I just don’t know how you fit either. How we fit out. Honestly that’s a great that’s a very honest answer. Yeah. I like that because you know so often and we just talked about it just a few minutes before we started talking to you. You know, we have people coming as as you described. Are we using drones to blah, blah, blah? Right. Right. We have a hammer looking for a nail. Right. Let’s find a business problem that our customers are a target. Prospects are looking to solve that that blockchain can integrate with with your technology to solve.

 

[00:38:38] And this was a big conversation point in the fireside chat. Right. And I referred to it as kicking tires. Right. Because we were talking about sales situations. And, you know, we’re where we see the challenges still is there’s a difference between a company that reaches out to you for whatever reasons and says we’re investigating this type of technology. What do you want to use it for? We’re not sure yet. We want to see what you have to offer versus the company that sat down and said, hey, we have a problem. Here is the problem. Yeah. Yeah. What technologies can we use to solve the problem so that your conversation always yields a better you know, I agree. A better commitment to solving a problem versus kicking tires on technology solution first.

 

[00:39:19] Right. Yeah.

 

[00:39:20] All right. So for clearly you’re gonna be talking with business leaders and prospective customers, maybe even current customers while you’re here in Atlanta with Mode X, right. I can picture your booth being swarmed as we speak.

 

[00:39:34] Jason, but if we should have a live cam as we’re hiring people to see if their booth is being down there, they’re all taking numbers on waitdon’t Jay while we’re talking to them.

 

[00:39:44] That camera just caught my face going really well. EFT I hear this after that.

 

[00:39:51] Yeah, but for folks that aren’t here, Moto X and especially in this podcast gets published, how can. Learn more and can connect with you first and then how can they also connect with the company?

 

[00:40:04] Connected with the company, I’ll go backwards. Yeah. So call passe now is the u._r._l. So w w w call passe now. A.W. dot com. Dot com. All right. You can reach me on LinkedIn. Jason Ashton, my e-mail address is Jason A at S.P. M, the number two edmonds.com. Super complicated. Yeah.

 

[00:40:28] I believe I have a Twitter handle. I’m gonna be honest with you. I don’t know what it is. Marketing handles that for me.

 

[00:40:33] Well, you’ve got a company Twitter call said at call pass underscore CEO. Yes. Aaron’s going to get very mad at me. Well, you know. Well, he listens now and that’s OK. We got it out there. OK, so tell her to back off. OK. And we’ll also we’ll we’ll. So when we published this episode, what we did with all of our guests, because we. Yeah. Well, as easy as possible. You know, it’s really important when folks come on here. We’ve done our homework and we want to share this thought leadership and the cool things these companies are doing with our audience and in the industry. So we make it really easy, Will. We’ll tag you on social media. I’ll include some of these links in there in the episode Digest, including this report you mentioned earlier. I got a new one for me. The report you mentioned is Driskell report. Brisker report is not for me. So we’ll look at look that up, too. And then you’ll also own linked in. I imagine like most successful, thriving tech firms, you’re probably hiring folks who learn more at little on the LinkedIn page call pass dash into M Dash Solutions, which is the easy way to find your company page. And LinkedIn really doesn’t sound easy.

 

[00:41:35] Well, you know, we should we should be really grateful if we don’t this.

 

[00:41:42] That’s that’s a discussion between you and your marketing, right? I don’t think we should have that. Oh, yeah. We’ve got to level it.

 

[00:41:47] And clearly, clearly the T. I think you’re from what I heard today and in some of our pre-show conversations, you know, you can boil this down into a non Technical conversation that is so critical, especially these days, where folks get two minutes, learn about some and figure out if they’re going to gage whether it’s mode X or whether it’s just business. You know, yeah. In general especially, is this ever being disrupted?

 

[00:42:15] And if you if you take a look at our M, you’ve you’ve spoken with Veridian does a phenomenal job for us. And she’s been so integral in shaping the message we have and taking that message and making it easy to consume. Yeah. All right. So our materials are easy to ingest. You understand what we’re doing just by looking at something. So it doesn’t get into that. What exactly is this tag yet? OK. This makes a lot of sense. Yeah.

 

[00:42:38] Agreed. OK. Critical these days.

 

[00:42:41] Really? I’ve enjoyed talking with Jason Ashton, the president call pass. You can learn more at call pass now. Dot com. The pride, Jason, is the pride of Naugatuck in Connecticut.

 

[00:42:52] Yes. Almost put Canada there now that Connecticut, Naugatuck Etiquette, Connecticut, only anyone coming in, Jason. Tampa, Florida. Yes. All right. That’s right. So thanks for your time, Jason. You really enjoy it. Thank you. Really appreciate you sharing. You know a lot of what you are doing from innovative standpoint and some stuff that you shared in the fireside chat. I think our listeners get kind of a two for one here. So this continues our coverage of Madox 2020. No shortage of of intriguing conversations. Right.

 

[00:43:23] It is fascinating what companies are doing out there and how how many different approaches there are.

 

[00:43:30] I mean, it seems like it sometimes it’s just a minuscule different viewpoint on Supply chain opens up an entirely new area.

 

[00:43:40] It also seems like there’s a circus right behind us. Sorry. It’s very secure. Jason, you’re the first guest. This actually risk responded and reacted. I’ve been waiting for one to do it.

 

[00:43:51] So for our listeners that can are checking out the YouTube episode. You just noticed right over just on the other side of our mobile studio, we’ve got what really amounts to a supply chain fair. Yes. Right. We need to take a video. Yeah. And included in the show notes.

 

[00:44:07] That’s for all of our all of our show. You’re right. But they’re doing good work over it.

 

[00:44:11] Wolf, tech over there and press in the crowd selling popcorn. I’ll bet. All right. So to our audience, I hope you’ve enjoyed our conversation with Jason Ashton with Call Pass as much as we have. You have plenty of information on them on the episode page. But in other news, check out what else we’ve got coming up on our events and webinar tab at Supply Chain Now Radio dot com.

 

[00:44:30] Variety of in-person and more more virtual events, virtual events. AIG is going to be virtual well there. That’s right.

 

[00:44:37] Their CSR event, corporate and social responsibility event in April is looking to be virtual. You know, the association landscape. They’re trying to figure out how to deliver the thought leadership like we’re doing here. But without some, the fiscal risks that, you know, folks are still trying to battle back. But we will continue. All right. E.M.T. Rhoda’s events, we have automotive industry action group stuff coming up. George Logistics summit, which has been.

 

[00:45:03] Moved and then, of course, are stand up and sound off event, which is virtual, which is also the show goes on no matter where you are. That’s right. So learn more at supply chain now radio dot com.

 

[00:45:19] Ok. Also, there’s something there. Or if there’s not something there that you’re expecting to find it, can’t find it. Should a CMO email? And that’s Amanda at Supply Chain Now Radio akam. We will serve as a resource for you.

 

[00:45:33] Or if you’re at Moto X, just tap her on the shoulder because she’s standing right over there.

 

[00:45:39] She might have some hand sanitizer for you. Yeah. Once again, big thanks to Jason Ashton. President call pass here today. Really enjoyed it. To our audience, this this concludes this episode. Stay tuned for the rest of our coverage here at Murdoch’s 2020. Again, you can check out our other upcoming events, replays of our interviews. Other resources at Supply Chain Now Radio BCom. Bond us and subscribe wherever you get your podcast from. On behalf of Greg White, this is Scott Luton wishing you a wonderful week ahead and we will see you next time. Thanks everybody.

Jason Ashton is the President of the CallPass Companies; CallPass Tech and CallPass M2M Solutions. CallPass specializes in providing advanced asset tracking solutions for companies and B2B enterprises.

Jason is a dynamic business leader with 19 years’ experience working with GPS related products and software platforms. He joined CallPass Tech LLC as President in 2008 and in 2013 he launched and became the president of CallPass M2M solutions. As president, he is responsible for the strategic direction, growth rate and expansion of the CallPass platforms and products. Before CallPass Jason held management positions at Sales Genie an earned a bachelor’s degree in Recreation Management from Springfield College.

Greg White serves as Principle & Host at Supply Chain Now. Greg is a founder, CEO, board director and advisor in B2B technology with multiple successful exits. He recently joined Trefoil Advisory as a Partner to further their vision of stronger companies by delivering practical solutions to the highest-stakes challenges. Prior to Trefoil, Greg served as CEO at Curo, a field service management solution most notably used by Amazon to direct their fulfillment center deployment workforce. Greg is most known for founding Blue Ridge Solutions and served as President & CEO for the Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader of cloud-native supply chain applications that balance inventory with customer demand. Greg has also held leadership roles with Servigistics, and E3 Corporation, where he pioneered their cloud supply chain offering in 1998. In addition to his work at Supply Chain Now and Trefoil, rapidly-growing companies leverage Greg as an independent board director and advisor for his experience building disruptive B2B technology and supply chain companies widely recognized as industry leaders. He’s an insightful visionary who helps companies rapidly align vision, team, market, messaging, product, and intellectual property to accelerate value creation. Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams to create breakthroughs that gain market exposure and momentum, and increase company esteem and valuation. Learn more about Trefoil Advisory: www.trefoiladvisory.com

 

Scott W. Luton is the founder & CEO of Supply Chain Now. He has worked extensively in the end-to-end Supply Chain industry for more than 15 years, appearing in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Dice and Quality Progress Magazine. Scott was named a 2019 Pro to Know in Supply Chain by Supply & Demand Executive and a 2019 “Top 15 Supply Chain & Logistics Experts to Follow” by RateLinx. He founded the 2019 Atlanta Supply Chain Awards and also served on the 2018 Georgia Logistics Summit Executive Committee. He is a certified Lean Six Sigma Green Belt and holds the APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP) credential. A Veteran of the United States Air Force, Scott volunteers on the Business Pillar for VETLANTA and has served on the boards for APICS Atlanta and the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance. He also serves as an advisor with TalentStream, a leading recruiting & staffing firm based in the Southeast. Follow Scott Luton on Twitter at @ScottWLuton and learn more about SCNR here: https://supplychainnow.com/

 

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