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Digital Transformation

Streamlining Logistics Workflows

Tony Venice / June 15, 2020
Warehouse worker

As consumers, we are purchasing more and more online compared to traveling to a brick and mortar store. In fact, eCommerce sales have doubled in the past five years and are approaching 20% growth year over year.  And, this growth was accelerated with COVID-19’s shelter-in-place orders that shifted online shopping from an occasional method to the only method of shopping for many.

This tremendous growth in eCommerce is driving increased distribution volume.  And that has placed a burden on companies to maintain operational efficiencies while remaining profitable and adhering to regulatory compliance.  But, achieving this has become harder. Consumers expect quick turnaround and more options, like next-day shipping, ship to store, and ship to locker.

Logistics processes are hugely dependent on paper, making them slow, inefficient, and therefore challenging to improve. This results in higher costs and less than ideal productivity. Paper-based workflows make important data contained in logistics documents – forms, invoices, bills of lading, delivery receipts, and packing lists – difficult to process.

For logistics companies to keep up with the growth, expansion and ever-increasing movement across their global supply chains, change is unavoidable. That change is digital transformation.  And the COVID-19 pressures placed on logistics specifically really brought to light the importance of agility in this area.

Digital Transformation

Digital transformation is about making the shift from manual, inefficient processes, to digital processes that streamline operations and boost efficiency. It’s all about using automation to eliminate errors and delays, and to gain a complete view into the distribution processes.

Toshiba has solutions that can help simplify even the most complex document processes. Whether your goal is to maximize productivity, increase visibility, or eliminate costs, Toshiba has a solution to reduce your manual, paper-based tasks that are disruptive to shipping and receiving operations.

6 Benefits of Partnering with Toshiba

  • Produce and capture shipping and receiving documents at the point of transaction
  • Instantly share order and delivery information with customers
  • Replace multipart forms and inkjet/dot matrix printers with advanced laser technology that prints on demand using standard copier paper
  • Use electronic forms to provide instant visibility to supply chain documents
  • Eliminate delays caused by out-of-stock supplies and forms
  • Reduce time-consuming paper searches and enable immediate accessibility to information for audits and compliance requirements

For instance, a recent Toshiba customer was spending a great amount of time searching for paper invoices and purchase orders.  They had no visibility in the invoice approval process, which created potential payment delays and penalties.

Toshiba implemented an automated invoice workflow system using a Toshiba MFP as the on-ramp, allowing the customer to track progress of approvals and also extract data from invoices and transfer into the customer’s ERP system.

As a result, the customer reduced manual input in their ERP system by 75% and decreased the time it took to approve and pay invoices.

For another Toshiba customer invoicing and recognizing revenue was dependent on receiving a signed Proof of Delivery (POD).  Each day 50,000 delivery tickets were processed and then stored in their ERP system.  Each delivery ticket contained information that needed to be accurately indexed.  This was a time-consuming process for the customer and created potential delays in invoicing and revenue recognition.

By implementing an automated workflow process using a Toshiba MFP, the company was able to significantly reduce the need for manual input, which in turn reduced the time to process delivery information by 66%, enabling them to invoice and recognize revenue much sooner.

Your logistics teams don’t need to feel the strain of this growing trend for online ordering with quick delivery times. Small changes to streamline operations can have a huge impact on a company’s success, and Toshiba can help navigate those changes.