“Very early on, we realized that manual saving of images was not going to work. We adopted Synergize pretty quickly. It’s so ingrained; we’ve been doing it so long, almost since we started our business.“
Proof-of-delivery (POD) documents are a crucial component of a shipper’s business. Prior to the days of document imaging, ATS managed their PODs manually in a paper process, with the associated challenges of filing, storage, retrieval, and photocopying. Because a driver’s daily “run sheet” lists all of the deliveries to multiple consignees for a given day, separate PODs with proof of signature for each customer had to be created manually.
Managing invoices was equally cumbersome. Each branch received paper invoices, stamped their approval on the paper with GL codes added in pen, walked them over to the manager for approval, and then mailed all paperwork to head office. At month end, there was a mad dash to get all documents entered into the accounting system and hope that no paper invoices got lost.
When ATS started using Synergize in 1998 it was exclusively for electronic management of PODs. Now the system manages over 15 different shipment document types including chain-of-signature paperwork for controlled products such as narcotics where a signature is required of every person who touches the package. Using a custom-built Synergize process, ATS is able to create individual PODs from a driver’s run sheet when it is delivered back to the warehouse at the end of the day. After scanning, the process matches the bar code for that customer with the signature, the shipment number, and other key data, then creates the record inside Synergize. Via a secure portal on their website, customers can view an image of the POD online, then process payment.
ATS recently added the Synergize accounts payable workflow for invoice processing. All invoices are scanned into Synergize and automatically distributed through rules for approval. All approval including GL coding is performed in Synergize Workflow, and Synergize then updates and posts to Accounting. ATS has full visibility into payables and to what’s in the accounting system and can easily run accrual reports.
Creating PODs electronically has enabled ATS to improve service to their customers by making images related to each shipment available the day of the delivery. Internal workflow has been streamlined for Billers who simply scan the daily run sheets to create an image of every single shipment, saving time and improving efficiencies. By employing the accounts payable workflow and automating the capture of invoices into the accounting system, the firm has expedited the entire accounting process and greatly improved accuracy and visibility. Synergize has helped ATS to grow their business without adding headcount. Both vendors and customers are happier with faster turnaround of shipment-related documents. In future, ATS plans to add more automated workflows, in particular to manage rate packages.
Want to learn more about the benefits of document imaging and scanning for a transportation business? Download our free whitepaper, Definitive Guide to Document Imaging & Scanning.