How Logistics can profit from OCR: 3 examples of document processes

How Logistics can profit from OCR: 3 examples of document processes

The logistics sector is known for high volumes, time pressure and lack of room for errors. Because the market is scattered into many small operators, it’s hard to digitize and standardize. That’s why many processes in logistics still involve a lot of paperwork and manual processing. Klippa has a lot of experience helping logistics companies to digize and automate their paper document processes. Below, you find three improvements that every logistics company should evaluate.

1. Become more efficient by automating transport order processing

Traditionally, in a logistical process, party A places an order with party B, who ships the order to party C. At and in between every step, there are moments during which documents are shared, think about shipment details, delivery route, etc. As is the case with all documents: language and layouts are a daily struggle. In e-commerce this all happens digitally, through interconnected software solutions. The entire process, from placing the order to managing the payment, is automated. 

Klippa’s software can really benefit any company working in transportation and logistics. Just forward all incoming transportation orders to the Klippa Template Builder either via an API or just by forwarding the original email with attachment. All documents are processed automatically: this means the required fields are extracted and placed in a structured format, for example a spreadsheet. That information is then ready for import in the next system, for example the route planning system.

Klippa's OCR automates tedious manual processes in logistics

This automated process has three major benefits. Firstly, it saves a bunch of time. This frees the administration department up for more useful tasks, such as reporting or customer satisfaction. Secondly, automation reduces response time. In many cases, delivery orders are sent out to multiple candidates and the first to claim the route drives it. The faster drivers can reply to a request, the better they can assess whether they want to claim it or not. Thirdly, it leads to fewer errors. People tend to make typos and mistyping a number in a postal code can ruin a proper delivery. Countless hours and euros get lost by making small mistakes. Machines, however, perform actions they is trained for, without mistakes. 

Doesn’t all of this make automation a no-brainer?

2. Better overview with Bill of Lading/Transport document recognition

When cargo is sent overseas, it is always accompanied a few obligatory documents: the bill of lading, a list of goods and a trial of the transhipment process. Sometimes, companies agree on a certain standardized way of working, especially when they do business on a regular basis. Working with QR or barcodes seems most convenient and in some industries, companies with with EDI. But roughly 30% of the freight is irregular, in which case sender and receiver do not have a history of working together. 

For these cases, people are still responsible for processing the information in the respective documents. Even when there’s no time pressure, efficiency is what makes companies win or lose to their competition. A cargo officer on the ground still needs to check if the carriage complies with the list of goods, if there is damage and validate the identity of the recipient. However, because of regulations, there are still plenty of manual actions that can be automated. For instance, a picture of a list of goods can help automate the customs clearance process. A scan of the Bill of Lading can replace physical safeguarding of goods.

3. Save time by digitizing the expedition process

Most transportation begins with a shipping agent. Expedition is a hugely competitive sector and it has three factors for success. 

  • First and foremost, logistics is a sector known for loyalty. To become successful in shipping expeditions, it’s a matter of building up relationships with as many manufacturers and trading firms as possible. 
  • The internet has a big effect on the shipping business as well, since it is a place where prices can be compared much easier. Traders simply ask quotes from several shipping agents. To be chosen, it’s crucial to sign good deals with freight carriers so you can offer the best deals to your relations. 
  • Thirdly, it’s efficiency of the business operation. That’s where freight document process digitization can help. Klippa helps shipping companies to digitize shipping documents.

These documents mostly flow through internal processes and systems. Operational costs of a shipping agent consist of a bit of overhead and some out-of-pocket expenses, but people way the most in expedition process. They spend their time taking documents out of an inbox, processing the information in a software system, forwarding the document, etc. All of these tasks are repetitive and don’t add value to the process as a whole. As said before, the expedition market is fairly competitive and the companies that manage to master efficiency, will succeed.

Sorting logistics documents, classifying them into different categories and extracting the required data are challenges that can be countered by Klippa. Shipping agents throughout Europe choose Klippa to digitize paper workflows and work as efficiently as possible.

Would you like to learn more about how we can help your business run more efficiently? We’d love to get in touch with you. Please contact us via chat or email: Would you like to schedule a demo with one of our product specialists? Then take a look at the options here.

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