Five Questions for Nicole White
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Nicole White joined Odyssey Logistics & Technology in June as the company’s chief information officer. She is responsible for the multimodal third-party logistics firm’s global technology strategy and IT operations.
Prior to joining Odyssey, White was CIO at Redwood Logistics. She also previously served as vice president of global IT strategic projects at XPO Logistics during her more than 10 years in the logistics industry.
“I’m a passionate executive that loves partnering with companies to solve complex challenges,” White said. “Logistics has been technology starved, so you can make a big impact utilizing technology and innovation.”
Odyssey, based in Danbury, Conn., ranks No. 50 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest logistics companies in North America.
Describe some of the most effective ways your company is using technology to improve its operations and address its unique challenges.
We are combining our industry experience with data, processes and systems to enable more informed decisions and to create areas of opportunity previously underutilized. For example, in our Cloverleaf sustainability program, we’re leveraging current and emerging technologies like electrification, artificial intelligence, analytics and IoT connectivity to move the industry toward carbon neutrality.
What are some of the top day-to-day issues and concerns you encounter in your role, and how do you deal with them?
Like everyone in the transportation industry, hiring is a challenge. We’re focused on attracting and growing the talent on the IT team at Odyssey. We’re also dealing with technical debt that was created over the previous generations. We’re working to become more agile and innovate faster — and that comes down to creating a culture that values technology adoption. To that end, we’re partnering with the business to advance a technology adoption culture through effective change management.
What emerging technologies are you watching most closely, and which do you believe hold the most potential to improve freight transportation?
Solutions that will enable our operations to support the needs of our customers. Each customer is unique, so having solutions that are configurable for our industry and support the most common requirements are incredibly valuable. Cloud-based TMS systems are making headway in providing end-to-end visibility, eliminating siloed decision-making and closing the communication gaps between shippers and carriers in both disruptive and normal conditions.
What steps has your company taken to protect itself from cybersecurity threats?
Cybersecurity has been a big focus for us as well as most companies in the industry. We follow an approved framework to ensure we are using our resources to provide the highest level of risk reduction. We recently expanded our IT team with the addition of a highly seasoned information security leader who has deep expertise in cybersecurity threat prevention and detection and incident response.
Look ahead 10 years. How do you envision the advance of technology changing the trucking industry over the next decade?
Over the next decade, I see the industry moving toward achieving the value of partnering with IT to solve the most complex challenges. We’ve started moving in that direction, but we have a lot of opportunity to continue to understand how powerful technology can be for improving our industry.
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