Digitalisation with significant savings in time and money

Freight forwarding

Process analysis
Process optimization
Custom software development

Digitisation of documents, use of applications and real-time data transfer are still not commonplace in all sectors. Until recently, one freight transportation company, which specialises in the transport of agricultural commodities, worked exclusively with paper documents. The drivers and dispatching staff exhcanged documents via post. The flow of information was slow, invoicing was late and customer awareness of the process was weak. At Paul Advisory, we were able to cope with this challenge as well.


A 24/7 dispatcher contacts an available driver by phone and relays information about a new job (e.g., moving 30 tons of grain from point A to silo B). The driver takes the load one by one until everything is transported. He keeps a record of each journey (number of kilometres driven) and the proof of the volume transported is the so-called 'weigh ticket' - a record from the weighbridge in the buyout. The driver collects the trip records as well as the weighing tickets. At the end of the month, the driver compiles the documents and sends them to the dispatcher by post. The dispatcher compares the trip reports with the weigh tickets matching it across with the contracted orders. Only then is an invoice issued to the customer.

This process has worked unchanged for about 15 years. Hence, we identified the backlogs:

  • the dispatcher has no information about the progress of the service and cannot answer basic questions from the customer (how much has been transported, when will everything be transported, will we be able to transport everything by...)
  • if there is any problem, the dispatcher is the last to know
  • invoicing takes place 30-45 days after delivery of the service, which causes a negative impact on the cash flow of the freight transportation company
  • the customer often urges the delivery of the invoice as urrges to close the case
  • the whole process is run by habit, without documentation, the entry of any other employee (new driver or transport subcontractor) is complicated with many problems

During the project the whole process was described and the following changes were implemented:

  • drivers make a record of the journey at the time of unloading
  • a space for customer comments was added to the trip record
  • information about the status of the order was added to the trip record ("x tonnes of total y tonnes have been transported, all will be transported to .....)
  • the journey record and the weighing ticket are photographed by the driver with a smartphone and sent to the control room (dispatcher)
  • the control room processes the trip records continuously and enters the information into the order management information system
  • the invoice is issued to the customer no later than one day after the end of the job
  • the entire process has been documented and a driver's manual has been created
  • the dispatching guidelines have been modified and templates for customer contracts have been adapted

The proposed solution was tested and successfully deployed. Currently the process is running without deviations. The freight transportation company has seen the following benefits:

  • the invoicing process was reduced from 30-45 days to 1 day
  • the dispatcher is accurately informed of the status of each order and can inform the customer in advance of any deviation
  • customer satisfaction has increased significantly, which has resulted in a sharp increase in orders

The second stage of the project is currently being prepared, which consists in the creation of a custom smartphone application connected to the dispatching information system. The driver will keep a record of journeys on the smartphone and the record of the journey, together with a photo of the weight ticket, will be automatically imported into the information system.

This solution will bring the following improvements:

  • no need to overwrite the data and the data will be in the system in real time
  • the control room (dispatcher) will have real-time control over the driver's performance
  • it will be possible to launch a customer portal, where the customer will be able to see the on-line status of his order (how many trips have been made, how many kilometres have been driven, how many tonnes have been transported, including the possibility to view a photo of the weight ticket)

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