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Why Do the World’s Largest Shipping Companies Use Snowbound Software?

by | Jun 11, 2012

Snowbound products are used by three of the world’s five largest shipping companies. This is no accident. Their needs of ease of use, reliability, internationalization, and instant support are hard to satisfy.

Shippers of paper and freight have to work with both high technology and low technology. They may be moving paper documents at express speeds or trucking crates of various materials at a more sedate pace. They may be shipping from one part of town to another or across borders around the world. Bills of lading might be submitted in any of the world’s 200+ countries in any possible native language. And yet for billing and tracking purposes, all the information regarding these shipments must be electronically tracked and instantly available at the shipping location, the receiving location and at the shipping company headquarters.

It goes without saying that records today are digitized and archived in centralized servers. And yet the many thousands of shipping clerks need to have easy to use and understand tools to retrieve, view and process the appropriate shipping documents. Plus, given the many countries from which shipments can be made, standardized training is difficult to achieve, so simplicity is a key contributor to the success of the operation.

One of the most compelling solutions for these shippers are browser-based viewers that can access a centralized server, perhaps half-a-world away to quickly upload and retrieve necessary documents. The documents may be something as simple as a scanned TIFF image or more complicated Adobe Acrobat or Microsoft Word documents. Needless to say these documents will be in many different languages and obtained from many varying sources of input. These viewers must have a local, simplified, error-proof interface so that operators can easily learn how to use the system efficiently and effectively. The sheer logistics of provisioning these far-flung networks of users with the most up-to-date software is overwhelming but critical to overall success. Solutions that satisfy these myriad needs include Java applet and AJAX-based viewers that can be easily downloaded to any client system for installation-free use.

Many of these shipping companies offer overnight service. That means all the documents necessary for shipment, including the bill of lading, but also customs paperwork must be readily available for quick review and redirection.

It is no accident that Snowbound is chosen for so many of these mission-critical applications. The combination of our powerful viewing and annotation solutions coupled with the scalability, reliability and security of UNIX servers running Java environments provides a system the shipper can depend on.

 

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