it's easy to integrate export documentation into a
company's current operations
of the most popular features of Shipping Solutions® 2000 is its new
Integration Utility that makes it easy to link the software with
your company's accounting, order-entry or ERP system.
provides important benefits to you and your company:
eliminates repetitive data entry. All the information you currently
capture in your accounting system can be sent directly to Shipping
Solutions 2000 and your export forms.
reduces the chances for mistakes. Every time you retype information,
there's a chance you'll type it wrong. Even small typos can slow
down an export shipment or cause delays in getting paid.
eliminates the need to maintain identical databases. By linking
Shipping Solutions 2000 to your accounting system, you only have to
update and maintain one customer list and one product catalog.
safeguards your company. Most accounting and ERP systems have
numerous security checks to protect against fraud. By integrating
your export documents with such a system, you provide the same
security for your international orders.
Integration Utility was designed to be easy to use. If your accounting
system allows you to export data in a comma-delimited format, you
should have no difficulty linking it with Shipping Solutions 2000.
importing your shipments into Shipping Solutions 2000, you simply run
the Integration Utility's two-step setup wizard:
Locate and link the files from your
accounting system to the Shipping Solutions 2000 database.
the fields from your accounting system
to the appropriate fields in Shipping Solutions 2000. Mapping is the
process where you tell the software which of your fields
should be placed into the equivalent Shipping Solutions fields.
this mapping process is complete, the configuration will saved.
You won't have to run the setup process again unless you change your file
structure or location.
this point forward, you simply click on the "Import" button
within Shipping Solutions 2000 and the program will pull one or more
shipments from your accounting system into the software.
Depending on how much export-specific data is available in your
accounting system, you may have to fill in a few additional fields
within Shipping Solutions, and then you are ready to print your export
our web site for a more complete description of the integration
process or call Bob Hale, our integration specialist, at
the growth of your export department can save time, money and trouble
It's not surprising that exports have become such an important part of the
U.S. economy, and companies of all sizes are looking at
international markets as a way to expand their
businesses. What is surprising is the number of companies that are failing to integrate their export
departments with the rest of their business operations.
It's not at all unusual for even large
corporations to treat their export departments as a poor stepchild—at
best, ignored; at worst, barely tolerated. These export
departments get hand-me-down equipment, are expected to be up and
running with little training or staff development, and are required to
create their own accounting, order-entry and shipping processes
because the requirements of international transactions don't fit
within the scope of the company's "normal" business systems.
not difficult to see how this can happen. The number of international
attendees at trade shows in all industries has been steadily rising
for many years. Add to that the ease with which anyone with Internet
access anywhere in the world can now find a company's web page. Companies that may never have considered exporting are now receiving
requests for quotes and orders from customers around the world.
company is exposing itself to many dangers when it allows its export
department to grow in an independent, haphazard fashion rather than
planning the growth and integrating it with existing business systems.
the very least, duplication of existing systems wastes time and money.
Many export departments must reenter data already entered into their
companies' accounting or ERP systems to create customs invoices and
other export documents. This duplicative data entry also increases the
chances for error or fraud.
A poor understanding of the
export process can lead to poorly negotiated sales contracts. In
international sales, INCOTERMS guide the transaction rather than the
Uniform Commercial Code used in domestic sales. And if salespeople
don't understand the additional costs and fees associated with an
international transaction, profits may end up going to freight
forwarders and steamship lines rather than to companies' bottom lines.
or poorly trained export staff can result in sales and export
shipments that violate U.S. law. Such violations can result in heavy
fines, bans on exporting, and even jail time for violators. Visit the Bureau
of Export Administration's web site for a list of companies
sanctioned for export violations.
Exporting is a great way for a company to grow its business,
especially at a time of an economic slowdown in the United States. But the export process
should not be taken lightly.
If your company is currently exporting or is about to begin
exporting, take a step back and review the entire process.
- Does the export staff have the equipment and training necessary
to be successful?
- Has your company integrated the export process into your current
business operations to ensure efficiency and protect against
errors and fraud?
- Have you aligned yourself with a freight forwarder or
international logistics specialist that can answer your questions
and help you be successful?
Once you've answered "yes" to all three questions, you've
helped position your company to be successful in the international