Freight forwarding software is used in many ways today, from producing documents to tracking your shipments, as well as billing and reporting. We live in a digital era and the future is paperless. Even now, as you search the Internet, you are one of the millions of people who are using online software to find the right freight shipping company. Go ahead and use another online tool by filling out our quick form below, and let our system do the hard work for you. Up to 5 free quotes will be emailed to you in no time!
Companies now use freight forwarding software to electronically track your consignment from the very beginning of the process. This allows you to follow your shipment up to the minute, providing you with 24-7 service. This is one element of an electronic data interchange (EDI). Computer systems can also generate your bill of lading (or air waybill), view proof of delivery and prepare your customs declarations. Software is also used by international freight companies when they load and unload containers or bulk cargo. How else would they know the precise amount of coal or oil that is on each vessel? Underloading is wasteful and overloading is dangerous. Computerizing the process makes it faster, easier, safer and more efficient. Freight forwarding software can even help keep a ship balanced because you can automatically adjust the ballast force to fill or empty the ballast water tanks. This might be necessary on choppy waters, or when carrying lighter loads (you'll want more water for stability) or heavier loads (less water so as not to slow the ship down). A large cargo ship will have several tanks throughout the bottom of the vessel, along the sides, and in the front and back. Onboard technology makes it possible to adjust the water levels in each one as needed.
Freight ships aren't the only things that use freight forwarding software; temperature-controlled containers (i.e., reefers) rely on technology to maintain ideal levels of humidity, ventilation, gas and temperatures for speciality items. Artwork, ancient artefacts, animals, flora, fauna, food, human organs for transplant, pharmaceuticals and dangerous substances each require their own atmosphere in order to arrive at their destination in pristine condition.
Even more applications abound, such as technological advancement in security systems to scan cargo. Security measures have tightened greatly since September 11th and some people in the industry are even advocating 100% scanning of all containers coming into the United States of America. Furthermore, companies can manage their inventory online using freight forwarding software. They can also use it to obtain feedback on services rendered.
The International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations (FIATA) offers all kinds of resources to freight forwarders, including tools for EDI to help them take full advantage of e-commerce. In addition, an Integrated Technical Cooperation Program (ITCP) has been created by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) for developing countries who need assistance to excel in the shipping industry. Finally, the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation (ITOPF) depends on software in its Geographic Information System, which contains data on oil spills and clean up efforts from 1974 until today.