Archive for the ‘Innovation’ Category

More on Maximizing International Goods Transportation Efficiency

Posted on: June 3rd, 2015 by The IAS Team No Comments

It is one thing to deploy standardized supply chain and transportation management processes within one country. Expanding operations over longer distances with greater complexity into other countries, while maintaining efficiency, can present quite a challenge. Managing international transportation is a complex process that, unless you are FedEx or UPS, requires working with partners and service providers. The quest for best practices has to start with clear requirements for those partners, and solid data to measure results and tune operations. In our previous post we shared 5 tips for driving efficiency for goods international transportation. Here are 5 more that deal with partners, performance and data:

    • Be clear, and standardize what your business requirements are for shipment acknowledgement, scheduling, en-route event capture, proof of delivery and billing. In times of tight capacity, the quality transport providers will gravitate to the transport buyers that are easiest to work with in the big picture.
    • Connect your intermodal network– Transportation buyer and provider on one platform enable one version of the truth when it comes to shipment data and service provider compliance.
    • Collect performance data around your critical intermodal nodes and make sure everyone knows what is being measured and why. Then share the metrics and results to foster continuous improvement.
    • Use data to drive intermodal decision-making and “tuning” of your intermodal network– Whether it is lane-, mode-, customer- or vendor-specific data, efficiency opportunities can be identified. The unit of measure may be revenue, cost, margin, hours, minutes, steps, stops or even calls.
    • Recognize and reward your vendor network based on performance– By being easy to work with, measuring compliance and rewarding performance with more volume, your service provider network will become increasingly efficient over time. All the stakeholders in your international transport chain will benefit.

IAS addresses these challenges with the IAS Dispatch suite that supports ocean, air, LCL/LTL, international and domestic moves. It brings together drayage assignment, appointment times, amendment management, invoicing, visibility, rates, optimization, and business intelligence.

By Blair Peterson

Globalization, Internationalization and IAS

Posted on: March 2nd, 2015 by The IAS Team No Comments

IAS has released a new version of our DispatchManager application (called DM 2.6 if you track such things!). In addition to some mundane behind-the-scenes improvements, we have upgraded our reporting functionality. But the exciting bit is that we will also now support multiple languages! With this release we add Spanish and Simplified Chinese to English as options for users to select after they log in.

What’s the big deal? Well, IAS DispatchManager began as a North America-centric transportation work order processing and transport vendor management platform. However, over the last couple years our customer base has grown to include several global 3PLs. These companies saw the benefit of connecting their entire networks of motor carriers on one platform, through a single “data feed,” to comply with a standard set of processes and business requirements. What started with 3 countries in North America quickly expanded to more than 25 countries around the globe. English is generally the lingua franca for supply chain and goods transport worldwide, but with a growing concentration of activity in countries speaking Spanish and Simplified Chinese, the time was right to expand our capabilities. With the help of our translation partner Sajan, we will be adding additional languages to IAS DispatchManager in the future.

Our EquipmentRepair application has been live in almost 90 countries for many, many years. But I suspect the nature of goods transportation operations–and the people doing it–is different than that of depots, terminals, repairs and assets. For one thing, dispatchers and drivers involved in local pick-up and delivery, airfreight trucking and drayage are often with smaller, local enterprises. Another is that a high percentage of our DispatchManager users are actually logging onto the IAS portal to transact business, as opposed to remaining within in-house systems to which IAS integrates– the latter scenario is more common in the IAS EquipmentRepair world.

At any rate, we at IAS are excited to offer new language support in DispatchManager, dovetailing with the capabilities of our Client Services teams in Chicago and Hong Kong.

Enterprise SaaS vs. Networked Platforms in Supply Chain and Transportation Management

Posted on: February 3rd, 2015 by The IAS Team No Comments

A recent report from Boston-based ChainLink Research on supply chain platforms compares Enterprise SaaS applications serving single, multi-tenant instances with true “Networked Platforms” that provide SaaS solutions for multiple parties–not necessarily in direct commercial relationships, initially–interacting on one platform. A networked platform features a many-to-many model for data, security, connectivity and onboarding. The network platform approach is best for supply chain and transportation management applications that require communication and collaboration among trading partners, be they customers/vendors or other third parties. In IAS’ current world of transportation management, the parties are buyers or arrangers of transportation on the one hand, and providers of transportation and related services on the other.

Some key features of a Networked Platform include:

  • Critical mass of trading partners that can either be easily added to the network or may already be connected to the network, reducing the startup time.
  • Easy discovery of new partners.
  • Ability to automate manual processes with visibility into operations.
  • Open marketplace for competitive bidding by qualified providers of supplies and services, lowering costs and finding capacity in tight markets.
  • On Demand, Real-Time Market that links buyers and sellers for immediate services, such as drayage and goods transport.
  • Sharing and leveraging of network-wide data allowing for analysis of trends and benchmarking of performance, costs and more.

Many networked platforms target a particular industry segment, such as high tech, B2B, consumer or retail. This is one of the key differentiators between the various networked platforms that serve industries such as drayage and goods transport (IAS), couriers (Grand Junction), personal transport alternatives (Uber, Lyft, Sidecar), grocery delivery (Instacart), or housing (Airbnb); all examples referenced in the ChainLink report.

Chassis invoicing – automated payments

Posted on: December 25th, 2012 by The IAS Team No Comments

The final post for our December series on chassis invoicing outlines the payment process embedded within ChassisManager. You can read our previous posts on event management, reconciliation, and billing to see how each of these activities converge to produce a reliable invoice. Read on to see how automated payment closes the loop on your chassis rental.

EDIT: Since the time of this post, payment methods are now entered at Billing > Billing Information > Add Credit Card. To learn more about payment methods, please visit the Support Portal.

By automating the payment process, we ensure that invoices are paid on time and with the least amount of effort. ChassisManager provides convenient and easy-to-use payment methods including debit card, credit card, and ACH bank draft. To set up a new payment method, select the ‘Admin’ menu, go to the ‘Billing Information’ submenu, and select ‘Add Credit Card’ or ‘Add Bank Draft’. Simply complete all fields on the form and save. You can follow this process at any time to update your payment details. Card data is PCI security compliant, encrypted, and not accessible by IAS or provider partners, so you never have to worry about the safety of your credit information. To view the payment methods you have on file, select ‘Company Profile’ in the ‘Admin’ menu and expand the ‘Billing Information’ section.

ChassisManager eases the invoicing and payment process for equipment providers and chassis users alike, resulting in fewer discrepancies and delays. Eliminate paperwork, avoid late payment penalties, and manage by exception with ChassisManager.

Our tips and tricks series share just the beginning of what you can do in IAS solutions, learn more about ChassisManager capabilities and ask questions at iassupport.interasset.com

 

Chassis invoicing – pre-invoicing reconciliation

Posted on: December 11th, 2012 by The IAS Team No Comments

This week, we are discussing another critical component of the ChassisManager solution: pre-invoicing and the associated dispute and resolution process. Pre-invoicing enables motor carriers to easily determine the accuracy of the system data and make any necessary changes prior to receiving a bill. This is our second post in the series so you should take a look at last week’s post on event/rental management if you haven’t already.

You can use ChassisManager’s remediation feature to note data errors on rentals with ‘open’ or ‘pre-invoice’ status. Open a dispute if, for example, you were charged an incorrect amount or you returned the chassis but the rental is still listed as open. This simple process ensures that when you receive your official invoice, you have already validated the charges.

EDIT: While the below method is still an option, the Trip Viewer now makes the process easier. To read more about the dispute process using Rentals > Manage > Trips, please visit the Support Portal

dispute screenTo begin, search for a rental by clicking the magnifying glass icon or click a column in the grid to browse by that category. When you find a record that needs reconciliation, double click it and select ‘Daily Trip Details’. Next, identify the trip on that rental that you need to dispute, check the box next to it, and click the ‘Dispute’ button. In the popup, select a Dispute Category that reflects the nature of the discrepancy. We recommend providing as much information as possible in the comments section and attaching any relevant documentation to bolster your claim. When you are finished, click the ‘Dispute’ button. The equipment provider will now be able to review the dispute and issue a credit or adjustment as appropriate.

Disputed rentals are conveniently colored red in the data grid and include a complete record of the dispute, including comments and uploaded files. Once your claim is accepted or rejected, the rental record will return to the status it was in prior to the dispute. If you wish to see a full list of your disputed rentals, simply return to the Manage Rentals page and select ‘In Dispute Rentals’ from the ‘View’ dropdown menu. If for some reason you don’t see the rental you disputed, check its status by searching for the rental number.

This is just the tip of the iceberg with what is possible using IAS solutions. For more detailed information and to get your questions answered, visit http://iassupport.interasset.com/home.

 

Chassis invoicing – managing rental events

Posted on: December 4th, 2012 by The IAS Team No Comments

To make the newly-launched ChassisManager a service that would change the industry, turn users into loyal fans, and address the current pain points of chassis rental, we knew the solution had to significantly improve the day-to-day execution of leased fleet management. So ChassisManager was designed from the ground up to ensure the most accurate and timely usage tracking and billing possible, including:

  • Automatic tracking of rental events, ensuring transparency and data reliability
  • An easy to navigate, no-headache, effective pre-invoicing and dispute process
  • Simple, understandable invoices and the ability to easily identify the billable status of chassis moves
  • Painless, streamlined payment methods with features such as automated payments and collection tracking by file

For the December series of tips and tricks posts, we will be writing about those four critical components of the solution. Let’s get started with the first one – managing rental events. ChassisManager provides the time and location of both on-hired and off-hired equipment. As rental data is automatically updated with associated events (gate-in, gate-out, tie, and untie), you gain real time visibility of chassis rentals.

EDIT: Since the time of this post, the Trip Viewer has been introduced in ChassisManager, which provides another resource for managing rental events. 

To monitor your activity, begin at the ‘Manage Rentals’ screen, which will display a detailed list of all your rented chassis, including rental number, start and end date, and chassis number, among other details. You can search by clicking the magnifying glass icon. Or you can view a list of rentals by status, such as opened, closed, or in dispute, by using the ‘View’ dropdown menu – the list will be reduced to rentals of the selected type. You can now sort by category within rentals of that particular status by clicking the arrow next to any column title. These features allow you to focus on what is relevant right now as well as quickly pinpointing chassis rentals you may have questions about.

Need to view status changes? No problem, simply click the rental in the main data grid and a list of events will be displayed in the Activity Log beneath the main window. As a rental’s status is updated, such as when your rental is opened, details are amended, or it moves into pre-invoicing, that change is recorded in the Activity Log with a time stamp, so you know all of the specifics of each rental. That same lower window features a ‘Trips’ tab which provides even further details, namely pickup and return locations and times, bill of lading, shipping company details, container number, trip length, etc. You gain added visibility to your leased fleet and have immediate access to up-to-date information on the units that are on-hire.

Our tips and tricks series just scratch the surface of what you can do with IAS solutions. For additional insight and instant answers to your burning questions, visit http://iassupport.interasset.com/home.

A well-managed platform imperative for true connectivity

Posted on: October 26th, 2012 by The IAS Team No Comments

At the heart of a global connected network must be a robust technology platform architected and designed for the optimal management of thousands of service provider participants and the millions of transport events to be captured, processed and stored for access by only authorized stakeholders. The platform must be secure, scalable, configurable, and reliable and it should apply the same modern cloud technologies that underpin brand-name web-based businesses.

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Congrats to 2012 CI Award winners

Posted on: October 22nd, 2012 by The IAS Team No Comments

IAS would like to congratulate all of the 2012 CI Awards winners. To learn more about the accomplishments driving their win, you can read more at CI-Awards.com.

  • Global Ocean Carrier of the Year – Maersk Line
  • Regional Carrier of the Year – Turkon Line
  • Logistics Service Provider of the Year – Kuehne + Nagel
  • Logistics Service Provider highly commended – Raaziq International
  • Innovation IT of the Year – MJC2
  • Innovation IT  highly commended – DP World
  • Innovation Technology of the Year – Carrier Transicold
  • Innovation Technology highly commended – DP World
  • Environmental Campaign of the Year – Port of Los Angeles
  • Environmental campaign highly commended – Seafast Logistics
  • Investment in People Award – DP World
  • Investment in People highly commended – Port of Tyne
  • Investment in People highly commended – PD Ports
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Award – Port of Salalah
  • Corporate Social Responsibility highly commended – Port of Koper
  • Shipper’s Choice Award – Hanjin Shipping
  • Port Authority of the Year – Peel Ports
  • Port Authority highly commended – Port of Los Angeles
  • Port Authority highly commended – Antwerp Port Authority
  • Terminal Operator of the Year – APM Terminals
  • Lifetime Achievement Award – Jacques Saade, founder Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of CMA
IAS sponsored and presented the award for Logistics Service Provider of the Year. We were thrilled to share the stage with winner Kuehne + Nagel as we know from working with K+N on DispatchManager what an innovative and customer-focused organization they are. We would also like to thank the customers that joined us at our table in raising a glass to the winners.

CSCMP and the supply chain of the future

Posted on: October 6th, 2012 by The IAS Team No Comments

Our VP of Sales, Mike Nedrow, attended the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals annual meeting this week and had an interesting time experiencing, discussing and thinking about logistics and the supply chain. Mike’s week started off with his flight being delayed by maintenance issues. This resulted in Mike being rebooked on alternative flights, getting the opportunity to explore eating options at additional airports, overcoming the pain of lost luggage, and arriving late at the CSCMP annual meeting. Having finally landed in Atlanta, filed a luggage claim, and missed the Falcons game, Mike then had to make his way to his hotel. His taxi driver, while obviously a man who could think outside of the box, had evidently not been schooled in the fundamentals of logistics or customer service. The driver cleverly managed to avoid much of the roadblocked, heavy traffic by taking routes to avoid homeward-bound Falcons fans, but failed in getting the right product (Mike) to the right place (his hotel) at the right time (first stop was a hotel of the same name in another part of Atlanta). But Mike is a guy who looks on the bright side so although his driver couldn’t understand his unhappiness or lack of enthusiasm for the delivery solution, he was happy to learn some new words in another language.

Mike, again a glass-half-full kind of fellow, saw having no clothes to change into as extra time for registration and exhibits. With heavy rains, Sunday evening traffic on the trade show floor was lighter than in years past, but made it easier to find friends from the different supply chain disciplines. Most of Mike’s small group had joined CSCMP when it was known as the Council of Logistics Management and a couple of the ‘old timers’ had joined when this was a meeting for Materials Management. As they walked through the various booths for ‘The Supply Chain of the Future’, they reminisced about the supply chain of yesterday, the evolution of our industry, and the rise in the role of supply chain management within organizations.

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IAS introduces ChassisManager and first customer, HRCP, launches service at Port of Virginia

Posted on: August 24th, 2012 by The IAS Team No Comments

ChassisManager facilitates the chassis rental process so motor carriers can more effectively manage their rented fleet

International Asset Systems® (IAS), the leader in cloud-based solutions for intermodal transportation and global cargo container shipping, announces ChassisManager, a solution for chassis providers to simplify the rental process and maximize asset utilization. ChassisManager helps chassis providers grow new chassis revenues, reduce chassis expenses, and ensure a stable supply of chassis assets to meet market demand all while making it easier for chassis users to secure the equipment they need.

“Ocean carriers continue to rapidly move away from chassis ownership and direct provisioning. In order to ensure a smooth transition from the old ocean carrier provisioning model to the new motor carrier based model, and to ensure a safe, consistent and reliable source of chassis to meet on-going customer demand, a mutually beneficial platform is required. ChassisManager meets this need and is coming to be accepted as the solution that the industry requires.” said Christopher Mazza, SVP of Business Development at IAS. “Even though chassis are a critical component in the intermodal chain of containerized cargo, many motor carriers and other chassis users do not know what to expect in terms of chassis availability, prices, and exceptions in the new chassis provisioning model. We address these issues with the ChassisManager solution.”

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