Changes in the global economy are driving transportation and logistics providers to rethink their business practices. Most providers have a significant number of staff assigned to manual data capture and exchange activities such as Track & Trace, gathering freight bill invoice information, managing customs forms, or securing proofs of delivery (PODs). Although essential, these activities are resource intensive, error-prone and tend to slow down billing and cash collection. Most of these tasks along with consolidation and increasing global competition have worked to reduce already-thin margins.
Today, transportation, Logistics and third-party logistics providers (3PLs) all struggle to access information they have locked in disparate IT silos and legacy applications which make information related to inventories and shipping difficult to view and track across the supply chain ecosystem. They also struggle with IT infrastructures of older platforms, aging systems and multiple integration points.
Couple this with time-consuming paper and spreadsheet-based supply chain processes, changing security requirements, an unskilled labor force, and rapid personnel turnover, and you have an industry that is challenged to keep pace and control costs. Add to this, changing cross-boarder regulations, increasing government oversight and ever-changing DOT requirements, carriers are forced to react on an ongoing basis—which adds to ever increasing costs.
To accelerate growth and profitability, companies need to eliminate costly manual backoffice functions and integrate their processing across the supply chain ecosystem with shippers, carriers, logistics partners, and other trading partners.
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