Freight managers balance many critical processes integral to the smooth and successful completion of deliveries. Vital among them, best practices for freight document management ensures that managers, shippers, drivers, carriers, brokers, and customers have quick and easy access to shipping documents.
Meanwhile, according to FreightWaves, “It is estimated that 15 percent of transportation costs are attributed to paperwork, documentation, and administration.”
Digital document generation not only streamlines information access among supply chain partners. It also reduces operating expenses related to routine freight management processes. Let’s explore how using innovative and automated services within a collaborative TMS platform makes it easier to manage logistics paperwork.
What Is Digital Document Generation?
Document generation uses existing templates for invoices, POD requests, CMRs, and bills of lading to produce digital files with auto-fill features and customization. Using digital documents shared within one system, you can eliminate paper documents and email exchanges.
And thanks to advances in cloud-based storage, real-time data collection, and on-demand tracking updates, transportation managers can keep track of all freight documents. Since cloud-hosted TMS systems give all team members access to logistics paperwork from various locations, teams can work efficiently and collaborate easily.
Why Manual Logistics Paperwork Management Wastes Resources
- Lost and misplaced papers lead to loss of data, information, and resources.
- Susceptible to protocol breach for customer data protection.
- Excessive staffing hours delegated to relatively mundane and menial tasks.
- Poor coordination and collaboration due to limited document sharing capabilities.
- Delays at shipping yards and load docks due to missing or incurred documents.
- Inability to easily update logistics paperwork for new specifications.
- Slow response to inquiries due to long searches through papers and customer records.
- Missed opportunities caused by delays in communication to team members.
- Unprofessional handling of disputes and limited logistics visibility and insight.
- Unable to scale and adapt quickly and efficiently to changing customer needs.
10 Benefits of Digital Document Generation
Digital document generation and freight document management bring other benefits that transportation managers can appreciate.
- Easy to train and onboard team members in the system efficiently.
- Instant sharing capabilities that allow for on-demand reporting.
- Automated data completion for faster processing of freight documents.
- Improved control over logistics paperwork filing and reporting.
- More streamlined processes end-to-end throughout the entire network.
- Faster processing of data and custom reports and insights.
- Professional responses to freight claim processes and issues.
- Better opportunities to collaborate with diverse teams in diverse locations.
- Enhanced visibility and transparency with digital document generation.
- Reliable access to critical forms such as multimodal bills of lading and invoices.