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Oracle rolls out new upgrades for transportation management and global trade management apps

By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
January 13, 2011

Oracle recently announced it has rolled out enhancements to its Oracle Transportation Management and Oracle Global Trade Management platforms.

Company officials said these new features are geared to help shippers and logistics service providers “further streamline processes, reduce costs, and mitigate risks.”

And they added that the new releases offer end-users provide additional transportation and global trade management support in various ways, including: additional transportation and global trade management support through enhanced fleet management, transportation sourcing, transportation business intelligence, transportation planning, small parcel transportation, rail transportation, dock scheduling, product classification, and trade control determination.

Oracle Transportation Management is designed to help companies manage the physical movement of goods through their supply chains, ranging from local deliveries to international shipments, regardless of the mode of transport, and leverages a single platform to manage transportation activity. The Global Trade Management platform is designed to help companies automate and apply the different government regulations and internal trade quality that they might have around import and export business activities for things like denied party screening, export controls and documentations, among others.

In an interview with LM, Oracle Vice President, Logistics Product Strategy Derek Gittoes said these rollouts were driven by three factors:
1-process innovation to expand capabilities based on needs that the market requires and features that customers are asking for;
2-making investments in technology- or architecture-related efforts in order to make sure its products are modern, standard-based applications to make technology easier and costs less to own and operate from a customer point of view; and
3-process innovation to give customers the capability to manage both product and fleet operations, as well as carrier or 3PL operations.

“These things remove the need for customers to use multiple systems,” said Gittoes. “They sometimes have to use one system to manage deliveries in their own fleet and another system used to manage transportation handled by a third-party trucking company. But to optimize across your own fleet, as well as a common carrier, you cannot do it using two systems.”

A main feature of a transportation planning features in this release is its optimization abilities, according to Gittoes, whether it be transportation planning to plan routing and then make adjustments as needed due to new orders or specific adjustments in orders, which require re-optimization or re-planning of routes while trucks are making pick-ups and deliveries.

Another primary feature is transportation sourcing, which helps companies to negotiate contracts with carriers across various modes, which is key as freight costs have been on the rise in recent months.

“As freight costs rise, the shipper community becomes very concerned and wants to negotiate long-term contracts,” said Gittoes. “We are particularly focused on less-than-truckload (LTL) service contracts, which have specific structures, due to freight classifications and weight breaks and ways of using standard tariffs.”

Along with an LTL focus, this new release of Oracle Transportation Management offers small parcel transportation enhancements for things like carton-level rating, tracking and freight payment, and audit. And in the future Gittoes said it is likely next releases will have a focus on air and ocean transportation.

On the Oracle Global Trade Management side, some of the key features of this upgrade include:
-packaged integration with Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1 for sales order and delivery trade compliance screening, which automates trade compliance as part of an integrated order-to-cash process for international sales; and
-usability enhancements to streamline the resolution of orders on trade compliance and improving process efficiency and customer service.

“Shippers and logistics service providers are faced with increasingly complex and volatile global supply chains,” said Dwight Klappich, Research Vice President, Gartner, in a statement. “To manage that complexity and optimize logistics operations, they need a comprehensive and unified platform that can deliver the extensive capabilities required to support all orders, shipments and inventory. With that kind of breadth and depth of functionality, it is possible to improve customer service while also reducing costs, improving efficiencies and mitigating risk.” 

About the Author

Jeff Berman headshot
Jeff Berman
Group News Editor

Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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