How Frontline Dynamics made collaboration between air carriers, forwarders, and truckers possible by integrating TalkJS chat.

We bring you a case study from Frontline Dynamics, a startup that wants to revolutionize the air freight industry. We sat down with Todor Todorov, the co-founder, and CEO to see how he’s helping this traditional industry adopt digital solutions.

This case study will show you how the product team from Frontline Dynamics used the TalkJS chat API and SDK to integrate a custom messaging solution into their online platform.

“The chat solution was one of the first features we planned when designing the product. We believe the younger work force would be much more comfortable with chat than email.”

— Todor Todorov, CEO at Frontline Dynamics

About Frontline Dynamics

Frontline Dynamics offers a first of its kind, fully connected communication and service enablement platform for all air-cargo logistic participants. It allows secure and traceable sharing and storage of data, tracking shipments, the transmission of standardized orders, execution of payments, and instant communication between all parties involved in the air cargo logistics.

“Frontline Dynamics is a collaboration platform between some key participants in the supply chain where everybody needs to exchange data.”

— Todor Todorov, CEO at Frontline Dynamics

The core premise of Frontline Dynamics is about making collaboration possible for all people involved in the air freight supply chain, the air carriers, forwarders, and truckers, with a single platform. Shipments usually involve a lot of cumbersome processes managed via phone calls, emails, and cash transactions. Frontline dynamics streamlines these processes by providing a fully connected service enablement platform with a messaging solution powered by TalkJS.

Challenges

The product team from Frontline Dynamics needed to find a way to connect all users and enable them to collaborate. Air carrier companies, freight forwarders, and truckers needed to communicate directly with one another and share documents. The idea was to replace all of the phone calls, emails, and fax with modern messaging.

They decided to integrate a chat solution into the platform. It was intended as a core feature that provides a user experience similar to modern messaging apps. It was also essential that the chat is customizable and easy to blend into the design of their platform.

The product team was first thinking about developing the chat in-house but soon realized that it was way too expensive and that it takes some time to do it all from scratch, especially building the chat UI.

“We were considering building our own chat software but due to time and cost constrains abandoned the idea. We needed a chat feature as integral part of the product.”

— Todor Todorov, CEO at Frontline Dynamics

Primary chat features they needed:

  • 1-on-1 private chat
  • File sharing (attachments)
  • Unlimited data retention for chat history and documents
  • Pre-built chat UI
  • Customizable UI design

Solution

The team from Frontline Dynamics used the TalkJS chat API and Javascript SDK to build a 1-on-1 private chat and embed it into their platform. The chat API made it easy to customize behavior, send system messages, and get notified on user actions. The SDK provided a pre-built chat UI that the developers customized using TalkJS themes, a CSS file that makes it super easy to work on the UI design.

“It was easy to integrate. All features needed (like attachments etc) were available.”

— Todor Todorov, CEO at Frontline Dynamics

frontline dynamics talkjs chat ui
TalkJS chat UI customized to fit the platform design

One of the core features is the capability to add attachments in conversations, which acts as a file-sharing system. What makes it possible is the unlimited retention of data and chat history TalkJS offers on all pricing plans. Also, the maximum supported file size is 100 MB, which is more than enough for the Frontline Dynamics use case.

The feature that propelled user experience to another level is the notification system that supports email, SMS, desktop, and push notifications. It made it possible to keep users in the loop across platforms. Here’s an example of how email notifications work. If the user goes offline during a conversation, an email is automatically triggered and sent to that user with the message from the chat. The user can then reply to the email, and the message will land back in the chat closing the loop and making sure that the conversation is not lost.

Results

By using TalkJS, the product team and developers were able to add a robust messaging solution to their platform in record time. The pre-built chat UI allowed them to cut the integration time in half. Not needing to develop the UI from scratch ended up being a huge time saver. The chat solution now powers conversations and collaboration between all users on the platform, from air carriers to forwarders and truckers.

“We are introducing TalkJS solution as replacement of email and phone/fax. Also as data bank for conversation history where documents can be stored”

— Todor Todorov, CEO at Frontline Dynamics

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