Traceability, transport optimization, goods receipt and inventory automation are top priorities for most logistics managers. Particularly in sectors where safety is crucial, such as aerospace, the rail industry or plant engineering, high legal requirements apply to the testing and documentation of the materials used. For this purpose, suppliers must hand over various documents, test protocols or certificates along with the material delivery. This documentation is usually either enclosed with the delivered parts in hard copy or sent to the buyer via e-mail.
Challenge: scattered and missing information
It is precisely these differing communication channels that pose major challenges for goods receipt. If required documents are missing or cannot be located, this prevents the provision of the often urgently needed parts. Moreover, customers then need to take on many manual steps, such as searching for and scanning in documents and assigning these to quality processes. This is not only time-consuming, but also error-prone.
Solution: automated, digital, and fully paperless goods receipt
Automation as early as the goods receiving stage helps to remedy this situation. This, however, requires a digital flow of information to ensure that the goods are received in a legally compliant and secure manner. To this end, SupplyOn offers the “Paperless Goods Receipt” extension module for operational procurement processes.
Requesting documents with the order
When orders or delivery schedules are processed electronically via SupplyOn, all necessary documents are requested from the supplier and confirmed by the latter as part of the order confirmation. This includes everything from pro-forma invoices and hazardous goods labels for transport and customs clearance to test protocols and material certificates at item level. For this, buyers define centrally in the master data which document types and formats suppliers have to provide.
Timely alerts for missing documents
If the supplier generates an Advance Shipping Notification (ASN) as part of a delivery on the SupplyOn platform, the system checks whether appropriate documents need to be provided for one or more articles or orders. These documents can be submitted either directly during ASN creation or at a later stage. Delays in goods issue due to missing documents are thus a thing of the past. If, however, documents are missing—for example, because they were not transmitted directly during ASN creation—all parties involved are informed in due time, before the goods arrive at the customer’s premises.
Standardized information transfer and automated processing
All information is transferred via a standardized XML interface. In addition to pure document transfer, other information can also be transmitted in this way, such as the type of documents, links to a specific order or order item, or other data that is relevant for automated processing.
Depending on the use case, the documents provided can be automatically stored in the document management system or saved as file attachments for quality processes in the ERP.
Consistent digitization and automation of delivery processes can greatly reduce manual tasks and the amount of error processing required. Paperless Goods Receipt extends the already robust delivery process and supports its integration into standard ERP quality modules. The fully automated, paperless processing of documents speeds up goods receipt, prevents blocked goods due to missing certificates and minimizes potential for errors.
Customer Case: up to 10 minutes time savings per delivery item
The use of Paperless Goods Receipt at a major rail vehicle manufacturer demonstrates the enormous efficiency gains of the solution: three to ten minutes can be saved – per delivery item. The fully automated processing and connection of material certificates with SAP quality processes has proven to be particularly advantageous in this regard.
In addition, company users benefit from seamless integration into the well-established SupplyOn solution and the clear, intuitive user interface. Both of these factors noticeably reduced the amount of training required for implementation.
Operational procurement processes at SupplyOn
In operational procurement, smooth processes with suppliers are crucial to keeping the flow of materials and thus production running. A large and often still underutilized savings potential lies in goods receipt. With SupplyOn, companies benefit from efficient digital processes, particularly with regard to ASN and goods receipt, ranging from AI support for selecting the best packaging to automated transmission of necessary documents, inspection standards, certificates and test protocols.