E-Ticketing in Transportation Management Software
E-Tickets (electronic tickets) have made bulk commodity hauling simpler and more efficient than the old-fashioned paper ticket. Paper tickets relied heavily on tidy data entry and organization which opened the door for human error. E-tickets have made a significant impact on operational efficiencies in a large variety of ways and here are a few of the biggest changes to bulk commodity hauling.
More Tech in More Trucks
One of the biggest changes that e-tickets helped bring about is the use of technology in the trucking industry. When bulk commodity hauling companies began to adopt e-tickets it meant that devices had to be deployed fleetwide. Drivers that had only worked with paper tickets would now need training. It was a substantial change for most drivers, especially in the early 2000’s, when smart devices were not as available as today. As mobile device technology advanced, so did the demand for more use in the field ranging from document scans to GPS tracking. This meant more data for bulk commodity haulers to leverage to improve workflows and efficiencies.
Invoicing and Driver Payroll
Being able to instantly collect your ticket data means that loads can quickly be verified and billed. The sooner you bill your customers means the sooner you can pay yourself and your drivers. One of the biggest examples of the impact on turnaround time is the oil hauling business. In the days of paper tickets drivers would go out to a well site and hand write a ticket and leave a copy of that ticket in a box on site. Then another person would go around and manually gather all those paper ticket copies and take them back to an office and hand enter the data into a spreadsheet to then in turn create an invoice for their customers. The turnaround time for invoices went from anywhere from days weeks down to minutes. E-tickets also reduced the amount of human error by no longer relying on legible handwriting from a driver out in the field juggling equipment and working figures with a pocket calculator.
Auditing and Verification
Paper tickets, even in their most detailed formats, could not account for everything that needed to be recorded out in the field. This often meant that drivers would add additional information wherever they could fit it and often in less than neat handwriting. Coming back to the oil hauling industry for an example, this often led to mistakes that could directly affect the amount of oil hauled. With the price of oil per barrel currently at, $122.00 that could mean thousands of dollars being over or under invoiced on each load that is hauled. E-ticketing allows for data validation in the field to help prevent simple errors. With the new devices in trucks and the advancement of mobile devices, this also enabled the integration of images into e-ticketing software. Now with most devices having cameras and scanning capabilities, images or scans of BOL data or locations can be uploaded to give even more detail for load auditing and verification.
Tracking and Reporting
E-tickets require devices for data entry and most of these devices also are equipped with location/GPS tracking of one kind or another. During the earlier stages of e-ticketing software this was the best way to keep track of load progress with integrations with Google Maps. Real time location information made it possible to optimize routes and dispatches quickly and easily and helped give more insight into load completion times. Having load information readily available in a central location also allows for faster and more complete reports to ensure optimal operational efficiency.
Transportation management software has rapidly evolved in recent years. Bulk commodity hauling companies have seen increased efficiencies and more reliable data than was ever possible with simple paper tickets. If you want to learn more about how Dispatch Commodity has evolved our e-ticketing software over the years be sure to check out our features page.