Earlier this month, Amber Road and Logistics Management broadcasted a webinar on The International vs. Domestic Supply Chain Performance gap: Uncovering the Investment Disparity. Our presenters, Scott Byrnes of Amber Road, and Bob Heaney of The Aberdeen Group, received several questions throughout the webinar, but did not have time to address them all during the live broadcast. Luckily, they have taken the time to answer all questions in a Q&A! Here's a preview:
What is the trend regarding leveraging contracted Broker/Forwarder expected service? For example, giving a broker access to EBS to pull country specific HS Codes directly.
The trend is to enable the brokers and forwarders to focus on what they do best (i.e., arrange for transportation and physically clear goods through Customs), and to automate the other functions (i.e., product classification and entry documentation preparation) themselves. Via automation, manufacturers are generating ‘broker packets’ which they send directly to the broker. These packets have almost all of the data, properly formatted, required for the broker to clear goods through customs – no chasing down classification numbers or shipping documents, no manually re-keying data from an importer security filing. As such, the brokers become much more efficient, and the importer is able to negotiate lower brokerage fees in lieu of the fact that the manufacturer is doing much of the up-front work, which is low margin business for the broker anyway. This collaboration between brokers, forwarders, manufacturers, retailers and distributors is all done via web-based portals.