Thursday, May 27, 2010

A new type of TMS (Transportation Management System)

May 21, 2010 – announces plans for the July 2010 launch of its innovative new online transportation management system (TMS). Its TMS 2.0 – an easyTMS solution in the cloud.

The simple application represents a new way for companies to manage and control their logistics process from start to finish. Each module within the system is designed to save time, protect information, control costs and improve decision making for the logistics professionals in that organization.

easyTMS – Organized, secure carrier contract management with Tools for Carrier Selection, Route Optimization, Load Tendering, and Invoice Audit is what is does. Just as importantly, easyTMS provides services in a SaaS, or on-demand environment making implementation and upkeep simpler for users and per user costs a fractional of traditional TMS systems.

Ship Assist – Resolve disputes over Detention and other accessorials before they happen. With Ship Assist, all carriers delivering or picking up shipments from your facility sign off on the procedures at your shipping dock via a customized online webpage – creating a clear understanding of the rules and preventing future disputes.

Routing Guide – Reduce your headaches and transportation costs at the same time by improving compliance to your company’s Routing Guide. This on-line tool provides a simple, clean process for updating and distributing your Routing Guide.

Inquiries: or call 717.889.8509 or visit:

eROUTINGguide provides order fulfillment services for e-commerce businesses.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Supply Chain Technology and TMS

I found this interesting article by Logistics Management Magazine containing and interview with Adrian Gonzalez from ARC Group. It touches on Supply Chain Technology and TMS (Transportation Management Systems).

Adrian also has a blog that is very much worth following.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Shipping Considerations for Online Ecommerce Retailers

A significant expense for any online retailer is the order fulfillment process which includes the storing, packaging, and shipping of a customer’s orders. This is beyond the cost of sourcing the merchandise, regardless of what the business sells, plus marketing and other cost of sales expenses. Taken in total, all these costs have to be managed effectively for a business to maintain profit margins. A positive margin is obviously vital to the success for any online retailer. The good news is making the right decisions regarding the storing, packaging, and shipping components could possibly be the easiest to influence on that list with the most substantial impact for the betterment of your business.

The following are three main cost considerations for start up online retailers when it comes to shipping.
1 – Supplies. These include the packaging material (or dunnage) to fill around and protect the merchandise as well as the carton itself.
2 – Direct Shipping Costs. Your selection of who ships the order (USPS, UPS, Fed Ex?) and at what service level (Ground, Next Day Air, etc.) impact costs tremendously.
3 – Your Time. Is packing boxes, dealing with storage, and printing shipping labels the best use of your time? As a small business owner you should be asking yourself constantly throughout the day – Is what I am doing right now helping to make my business more successful?

Supplies – Basic shipping cartons in a limited range of sizes are free from the USPS, Fed Ex, and UPS. That’s a good option if what you are shipping fits and is not either too big or too small. Shipping a lot of empty space in every box with your merchandise is not efficient and many businesses prefer to exert more control over the customer experience with custom or specialized packaging for shipping orders. The packing material used to protect the merchandise comes in a lot of options – with some even being eco-friendly (such as styrofoam “popcorn” and expandable foam made from soy). The additional expense of customized packing materials and cartons has to be considered.

Direct Shipping Costs – The 3 main options for shipping small packages in the US are the USPS, UPS, and Fed Ex. All three offer a form of Ground (slowest and cheapest service) as well as several expedited (overnight, 2 day, etc.) delivery services. Volume speaks when you ship with UPS and Fed Ex so talk to your rep about volume discounts that will kick in once you hit certain volume thresholds. Watch out for residential delivery charges with UPS and Fed Ex. USPS pricing is generally lower – but service time are also generally slower and there are less shipment tracking options for the order as well. There is a hybrid solution in which a company (could be UPS, or DHL Globalmail, or several others) acts as a “mail integrator”. These companies pick up on their own trucks but then take the packages to the USPS who takes care of the final delivery. This set up works best in a business to consumer model and requires a minimum daily quantity of packages (usually about 250 per day).

Your Time – Again, is printing shipping labels the best use of your time? The excitement and desire to grow a business is what motivates most online business owners. Focus on helping customers fill their shopping carts.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

eROUTINGguide - a new "easy TMS" SaaS Offering for Logistics

Here is an overview of a new system we have in development that can perform many Transportation Management System functions at lower price points that tradition TMS Systems, and with easier implementation.

Our targeted go live date is July 1, 2010 and are looking for shippers interested in beta testing any of the functionality.


Executive Summary: is easyTMS. The eROUTINGguide vision is to offer on-line tools that give small and medium size companies access to transportation management technology that was previously only affordable to large companies. Each module within the system is designed to save time, protect information, and improve decision making for the logistics professionals in that organization.

• ShipAssist - Provides tools that help companies by preventing accessorial charges and improving communication with carriers.
• Online Routing Guide - Improves inbound and outbound routing guide compliance, reducing costly errors and service issues.
• easy TMS - Helps businesses reduce freight costs through ensuring better carrier rate management, shipment routing decisions, and carrier communication.

Each tool is simple to implement and has an ROI of days, not months or years.

ShipAssist provides easy access to an online location for shippers to post facility rules and regulations, maps/directions to their facility, or any other information a shipper wants to communicate to carriers. As a standard procedure, the shipper directs carriers to their personalized site to review the facility’s regulations and provide a documented acknowledgment of acceptance of the rules. The main benefits of the service are to set clear guidelines and expectations for carriers to prevent disagreements over detention or other accessorial charges, as well as eliminate calls to the shipping department asking for directions or other requests for basic information. There is ASN (Advanced Shipment Notification) functionality available as well.

The target market for the service is a manufacturer with one location, or a national retail chain with multiple locations, each having unique receiving requirements.

Online Routing Guide:
eRouting Guide provides an online location for companies to post their corporate routing guide in an open or password protected environment. The routing guide information is posted on a personalized site for the business and can be customized with any relevant content. Instead of sending out hard copies of routing guides, potential users can reference the information online. Updates can be made instantly and notification of any changes are sent immediately. Routing compliance is improved, therefore reducing time and expenses incurred to the business resulting from misrouted shipments. The goal is to make sure each shipment is routed the right way every time. There is ASN (Advanced Shipment Notification) functionality available as well.

The target markets for the service are any manufacturer with vendors or suppliers sending inbound product or companies with de-centralized shipping origin point.
easy TMS:
easy TMS provides simple, easy to implement Transportation Management System functionality for truckload volume shipments at a low monthly rate. The system is web-based, or a SaaS.

eTMS Functionality:

• Tool for organizing and securely storing carrier rate contracts in a central location, allowing companies to make sure the correct routing decisions are made on every truckload shipment. Rate sheets that in the past were buried in a drawer or non-existent are now in one location so in the event of employee turnover or a need cross train additional employees the information is accessible to the right people.
• The Rate Quote tool identifies the top 3 low cost carriers for a given shipment, calculating and presenting the mileage, line haul and fuel surcharge costs.
• The system eliminates time consuming phone calls and manual processes by facilitating communication with carriers through automatic load tendering functionality, appointment confirmations, and Bill of Lading generation.
• Freight invoice pre-audit is integrated into the tool, automating the audit process for shippers – saving time or the need for a costly third party invoice audit company.
• The Sales Quote tool allows parties outside logistics to calculate costs for sales or budgeting in a controlled environment, taking this burden off the shoulders of the logistics group.

The target market for the service are small to medium size shippers currently reliant on manual processes for managing their carrier rate contracts and carrier communication processes.

Order Management, Shopping Cart Software, Ecommerce Platform, Order Fulfillment for Startup