Author: Víctor Vilas, Director of Business Development, @victorvilasmatz
Barcelona, April 20, 2015.- Each day the added requirements in logistics means that the actors of the chain need to be more competitive not only in their prices but also in precision, shared control and quality in the final delivery. As manufacturers of TMS’s (Transportation Management Systems) we detected a long time ago that the differentiating values that our system required in the past century are just the minimum requisites in any self-respecting competitive system. New formulas of control, of cost savings, of visibility for the client and for the recipient, multifaceted elements of analysis (as required by the present tendency of work with Big Data) are to be considered. These are the formulas that the main manufacturers in Europe are developing so that our clients can always bring the best technology to their clients and them to their recipients.
For example the analysis of quality of the logistics operators or of transport is not only measured in the quality of the deliveries, but also in the satisfaction of the recipient of the service of delivery and the tracking, and that the client can receive this analysis in real time. Another example: how can I make savings in my organization and how can I make all the information available (todays information and the information going back three months) in a click, this is a service that companies like ours have been providing for some time now. When we start processing our information or the information exchanged with the client, with the recipient, which is generally done via email it becomes more complicated and if we add to this other delegations the volume of interchanged emails is difficult to administer and if time has passed the information is almost all but lost. Processing all this information supposes a high cost for the organization, but this is a good example of how you can differentiate an efficient TMS manufacturer from another. We need to be imaginative and create tools in our system that can deal with such cases. This is why we have incorporated the 2.0 technology in our e-TMS so that all the data is saved in the right place, in a multimedia chat. We acknowledged that our clients needed this type of tool and the requirement sine qua non of a TMS supplier is the ongoing analysis its client’s needs in order to provide a solution for that need.
For many years the TMS manufacturers have only prioritized that the operators do their deliveries on time and have a signed delivery note. Today, and even more so with e-commerce, other factors of transport need to be implemented, amongst others:
- Routing systems.
- Deliveries and tracking with Smartphone.
- Delivery alarm within set hours.
- Tracking system from the cell pone of the recipient or via web.
- Interfaces with the Back-End of the chargers or manufacturers.
- Signature and image captures upon delivery.
- Stringing of notices, timetable certification to avoid expensive second deliveries.
It is not relevant whether the delivery is done by own means or via an independent service, the information needs to be the same: correct and in real time. We already use this logic and it should be the same for any efficient TMS manufacturer. Obviously this technology is 100% web. Mobility is not only the job of the delivery person or the driver. The logistics technicians, the commercial structures, the directives, and the clients, to sum up everyone has to have the information accessible from a computer, tablet or Smartphone. This is the tendency in Europe and in the United States. It is important when choosing a TMS supplier you ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I want to work with a system that is efficient, that assigns correctly that invoices correctly or is this the least I can expect of a TMS ?.
- Do I want to work with a system that covers all my transport needs of today and that is multimodal knowing that tomorrow a client can require me to provide a new service that I do not have and my system will have to support this?.
- And if this is the case do I have to pay upfront to get it or do I only have to make sure my supplier can offer this service and assume the cost of it at the moment it is going to be an investment or a cost?.
- Even is the system is efficient does its technology meet the demands of the market?.
- Even if I only operate on a national level does my supplier have experience in Europe or only locally? We he be able to provide me with the European tendencies so I can be competitive?.
- And most important is the system the supplier has to offer suitable for me and is the supplier suitable for me?
At AndSoft we work from 5 countries for clients in 14 countries but we have a clear line of action. First we must understand our client’s needs, analyze their needs, provide our experience and see if we are adequate for them. We also have to ask ourselves questions because we cannot commit any errors so we constantly ask ourselves the questions above and many more, because this is our job. This is what makes us different. A TMS creates links between a Client and its technological Partner. A client and a Recipient. A Client and his web of Contractors. A Client with his Delegations. A Client with his Correspondent. A TMS links all the logistics chain.