Many life sciences companies use ERP or TMS systems to ship freight, along with a workstation provided by their parcel carrier to ship smaller packages. Others may take advantage of software or a website provided by their preferred carrier.
One thing these solutions have in common is that they require significant human intervention. That’s fine for shipping small numbers of parcels. But as life sciences organizations move toward a production parcel shipping environment, shipping thousands of parcels, two problems become apparent:
- Going to a parcel workstation or a website to enter shipping information and print a label for every parcel is both labor and time intensive.
- A parcel carrier’s workstation or website provides little visibility into whether that carrier is offering the best rate or routing for your parcels.
- As parcel volumes increase, life sciences companies need a better way to manage their parcel shipping processes. Enter black box shipping with PRECISION Desktop Shipping.
What is Black Box Shipping?
Black box shipping allows life sciences companies to automatically generate a shipping order directly from their ERP or ordering system. It streamlines the processes of entering shipping information and generating labels and documents, reducing human intervention. Instead of entering orders and shipping on two separate devices or systems, black box shipping integrates them, allowing your ERP system to become a “shipping expert” that can automatically ship more orders, faster.
By integrating PRECISION Desktop Shipping solution with your ERP, you can create a black box parcel shipping system that drives your shipping processes directly from your manufacturing or distribution workflows. The solution can be configured to set up each shipment automatically based on the business rules you select.
How Does It Work?
PRECISION Desktop Shipping can be used as a standalone solution or it can be integrated with your ERP system to create a black box shipping solution. You can choose how you’ll use the solution depending on your needs: You can use the black box shipping mode to manage high volumes of shipping, and still manually enter orders that have unique requirements.
When using black box shipping, the majority of your shipping calls are fed directly between ERP and desktop shipping applications whenever a shipment is required. Human intervention is needed only to pack and label boxes.
You can determine the rates, label and document requirements based on your specific business practices or preferences. Each product, client or carrier can be configured differently, providing total control over your shipping at a push of a button.
The advantages of integrating PRECISION Desktop Shipping with your ERP to create a black box shipping system include:
- Automated logic – When setting up a shipping order manually, users often need to research customer delivery preferences or other specific requirements. A black box shipping solution allows these preferences to be triggered automatically whenever an order for that customer is entered.
- Automated calculations – Calculating shipping dates, determining which carriers can meet those dates or provide the service level required for a temperature controlled shipment can take quite a while for a human. Black box shipping does all of this automatically behind the scenes, faster and more accurately than even the most experienced shipping expert.
- Reduced cost at higher volumes – Human resources costs for manually entering shipping orders and printing labels are reduced, while still being able to handle much higher volumes.
A few more advantages of black box shipping with Precision Software? More space in your shipping center, since you’ll no longer need a workstation for parcel shipping. No more toggling back and forth between ERP and shipping screens to enter shipping information. And more consistent shipping processes, since they’re no longer based on the knowledge of individual employees.
Black Box Shipping Drives Quality and Compliance
Life sciences is a highly regulated industry, with complex global shipping requirements. Increasingly, shipments require specialized handling such as cold-chain shipping and compliance checks to comply with regulations as well as to ensure product safety.
With PRECISION Desktop Shipping driving your black box shipping, you can ensure strict compliance on every order with fewer mistakes and problems. The entire shipping process, from labeling and documentation to compliance checks, can all be automated.
When problems do arise, our built-in delivery exception management allows users and managers to take corrective action quickly so that problems are resolved before quality is impacted or regulations violated. If carrier service is not available, if a label or document won’t print or if a compliance check fails, it is handled in black box shipping mode by the solution’s exception-based decision system. Users receive email alerts or can view them from within our workflow console screen.
Precision Software’s highly configurable software can be quickly and easily integrated with the ERP systems life sciences companies most frequently use: SAP, Oracle, QAD and many others.
PRECISION for Black Box Shipping
As life sciences firms move from shipping individual parcels to shipping parcels in higher volumes, a black box shipping solution is a great way to lower costs while increasing efficiency.
If your company is growing quickly or is looking for new ways to significantly reduce labor costs, schedule a free consultation with our team today.