Global Operations with Local Tailoring

Global Logistics Service providers face constant pressure to meet or exceed the expectations of their customers. International Freight Forwarders are no exception. For any organization with branch locations that spread across multiple geographic regions, a single process work flow is the best way to manage efficiency and deliver consistent service levels to their most important customers. Growth by mergers and acquisition is common in this industry however, and that can mean that branch offices operating under one brand may be managing shipments using a number of different software systems.

The objective of maintaining standard global operations procedures often leads to selecting one software application to be used by all branches. Implementing any process driven application can have challenges, but when adding the complexity of rolling the solution out to branches across the country, into different countries, and even across global regions can complicate the effort many times over.

While it’s one thing to define a reasonable process work flow, globalization introduces many new issues that need to be addressed such as differing government regulations, languages, available technologies, and simply cultural differences. These can add significant risk to the success of a project. A common approach is to compile all of the elements needed from every region and to create a solution where every possible need is satisfied on one display for each step in the process. The result is that every operator is faced with an application that is much more complex, difficult to learn, and difficult to use because of the need to navigate around all of the features and data elements that don’t pertain to their own local markets.

Intellect Technologies is a logistics software developer that’s chartered to deliver applications that operate in global markets. Their software designers understood these complexities and one more that often surfaces. That is user acceptance. It’s not easy to explain why the new system implemented by HQ isn’t as clean and efficient as the one that could have been created locally. Why do things need to be more difficult in France just to satisfy the needs of the government in China? Intellect took that into account last year when they released their latest version of Intellect eFreight designed for Freight Forwarders, NVOCCs, and 3PLs.

Intellect eFreight is a highly configurable application that allows the system to map a standard work flow that serves all of the locations in the company network, all using a single database. And because it’s been developed on Oracle’s tools and database, it can be scaled to serve a single location or organizations with hundreds of branches. To address the needs of globalization, Intellect has created the most flexible User Interface in any vendor supplied Freight Forwarder software.

Through the Screen Settings feature, customer system administrators have the ability to adjust any screen layout in the system down to the office level. That means that data fields can be moved to another location on the screen, be relabeled to address terminology and language differences, or be removed altogether. Fields can be made mandatory, and defaults can be established locally or at the total company level. This unique capability means that an operator in Boston doesn’t need to deal with the VAT that’s needed in a branch in Europe. The team in Hong Kong can have a role to play in designing the screens they need to operate in their region. The benefits of this important feature are greater user acceptance, increased operating efficiency, and increased project ROI.

This degree of flexibility isn’t necessary for every Forwarder, so Intellect offers a “standard” configuration that satisfies many operations out-of- the box. For those who do deal with the complex requirements of global operations however, Intellect eFreight is the only vendor supplied solution designed specifically to address these unique requirements.

Being a tier 1 logistics solution, Intellect eFreight is a feature rich multi-mode solution to manage shipments for air/ocean/ ground, import and export. Unparalleled flexibility, advanced technology, and a long standing commitment to customer support allows Intellect to provide exceptional value to customers in every global region.

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