Global trade and transportation requires lots of paperwork. In
this QAD Precision Report we look at how integrated solutions
simplify the export process.
Whether you sell circuit boards or cosmetics, getting your goods to
your customers is critical. All manufacturers of physical products
have one thing in common — the need for transportation. Transportation
links buyers and sellers, as well as goods with markets.
Human beings have engaged in trade for a very long time — not just
locally, but globally. Think of the Phoenician ships sailing
throughout the Mediterranean, trading textiles, glass, wine, oil,
dried fruit and nuts, or the merchants travelling the Silk Road. As
long as humans have engaged in global trade, we have needed a reliable
way of transporting goods over long distances.
Over the centuries between then and now, transportation options have
changed — but not by that much really. Ships are bigger and can travel
greater distances at quicker speeds, but a significant number of goods
still reach their destination by sea. Trucks are certainly quicker
than horse-drawn carriages, but the need for well-maintained road
networks remains the same.
Our merchant forebears may not have had air freight, or express
carriers, or drones for that matter — with the exception of carrier
pigeons! On the positive side, these traders had to deal with a lot
The modern world runs on paperwork — whether physical or electronic.
When goods travel across town or around the world, they travel with
reams of documentation and labels. These can include:
Accredited carrier labels
General purpose shipping labels
Bills of lading
Dangerous good notes
Not all of these will be necessary for every shipment — but a lot of
them are crucial. Done manually, even a simple shipment — let’s say a
digital camera body and two lenses — requires quite a bit of time to
complete. At scale, manually creating all the requisite documentation
for every shipment becomes an onerous task.
Having said that, shippers cannot afford to have incomplete
documentation. If required documents are missing or incomplete then
delayed, returned or destroyed shipments may result. Plus there is the
possibility that shippers will be liable for the cost of extended
customs storage, penalized with fines or that customers may withhold
payment if they don’t receive their goods in a timely fashion.
When you ship goods internationally, the number of documents required
to complete a shipment can rise exponentially. Let’s take a look at
some of these:
Governments often use commercial invoices to calculate the customs
duties due on a particular shipment. In addition, governments may
require that you prepare the commercial invoice in a specific format,
language and so forth. Therefore, a company exporting internationally
may not be able to simply include their own standard commercial
invoice. This means they need a way to generate appropriate commercial
invoices for different destinations.
In simple terms, a customs declaration is an official document
detailing the goods imported or exported. However, in legal terms, a
customs declaration places goods under a particular customs procedure.
These include export, free circulation, transit, temporary admission,
inward and outward processing and so forth. Governments use customs
declarations to control the goods entering a country and to assess duties.
Certain jurisdictions may require extra documentation alongside the
customs declaration. For example, in the US, you will need to include
a Shipper’s Export Declaration if you export a commodity with a value
in excess of $2,500.
Certificates of Origin identify the country of manufacture of goods.
These certificates are not always needed — some countries require them
for all products or only for certain goods. In addition, some
countries require notarized certificates of origin, while others will
accept a simple statement of origin on the manufacturer’s letterhead.
Certificates of Origin are always needed when claiming preferential
treatment under a free trade agreement.
The bill of lading is a document that lists the shipper and the
consignee, as well as the type and quantity of the goods transported.
In simple terms, the bill of lading is a contract between the shipper
and the carrier for domestic or international shipments. The bill of
lading states what goods are being shipped, along with the shipment
origin and destination.
Goods classified as dangerous and must be accompanied by a Shipper’s
Declaration for Dangerous Goods. This is a requirement of the
International Air Transport Association (IATA). Exporters must ensure
the accuracy of the details supplied. In addition, they must meet IATA
requirements in respect of packaging, labelling and so forth.
If you ship internationally, an integrated solution for global trade
management, documentation production and transportation execution such
as QAD Precision simplifies the export process. With our integrated
solution, all major functions (shipping, trade documentation, and
compliance) are done through the same solution, and built using the
Integrated solutions promote on-time delivery while reducing
compliance exposure. From the beginning of the export processes, QAD
Precision will vet the transaction, alert you to critical export
shipping and/or regulatory controls, including export screening and
QAD Precision also automates documentation production and customs
reporting. As a result, global shippers have all of the documents
needed to complete a shipment, prepared correctly and presented in the
right format and language. This includes all export documentation as
well as carrier compliant labelling and transportation documentation.
As a result of QAD Precision’s integrated system architecture, 95
percent of information for each shipment transaction is automatically
provided. This dramatically increases productivity, while reducing
errors and streamlining the shipping process.
QAD Precision (Precision Software), a division of QAD Inc., provides
trade management, transportation
execution and multi
carrier shipping software solutions from a single, integrated
platform. Preeminent industry leaders in every region of the world
rely on QAD Precision’s global support centers to leverage thousands
of carriers and manage millions of shipping transactions every day.
Our open architecture easily integrates with Enterprise Resource
Planning, Warehouse Management Systems and legacy solutions. An
ISO-certified company, QAD Precision assists companies to minimize
shipping costs, optimize first mile and last mile deliveries, automate
free trade agreement compliance, avoid customs delays and mitigate
the risks associated with dynamic trading environments to
maximize their competitive advantage. QAD Precision’s customers span
multiple industries including banking and finance, life sciences, high
technology, retail, industrial, automotive, higher education and
public sector as well as logistics providers. For more information
about QAD Precision, visit www.qadprecision.com.
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