Freight Document Processing: Dos and Don’ts


After two years of “unprecedented times,” companies prioritizing resiliency have seen incredible gains. Now more than ever, companies are searching for tools that maximize both their stability and flexibility when facing the future. 

When asked about this for the 2021 MHI Annual Industry Report, 53% of the supply chain professionals surveyed said they are investing in robotics and automation technologies, while 54% are investing in cloud computing and storage. It’s important to consider these ten factors when considering automated document processing technology to add value and resiliency to the freight industry.

1. Do Enable Real-Time Document Sharing Capabilities

One of the most beneficial aspects of a document management system is its ability to share documents in real time. By programming rules that guide the system, freight forwarders can automate an integral part of their business communications.

2. Don’t Waste Time By Sharing Documents Exclusively by Email

Business owners on every end of the supply chain understand how full their email box can be at the start of a new morning. Maximize the use of an RPA by sharing documents via integrated platforms instead.

3. Do Gather Data From Your Tech Stack to Create Documents

It is easy for management members to get behind on paperwork, causing them to ask, “What’s possible to automate?” just to relieve some of the workload. Integrated automated document processing technology can generate documents instantly, removing hours of manual workload.

4. Don’t Print Documents Unnecessarily

As mentioned above, supply chain professionals are rapidly looking into cloud computing and storage. By moving all document processing to the cloud, businesses reduce operational costs starting with minimal printing costs and expanding into much more. 

5. Do Use Automated Checklists to Ensure All Documents Are Accurate

With automated document processing technology, freight forwarders can add an internal checklist to the system that pre-checks all documents for accuracy. By automatically sending an exception alert in cases of inaccuracy, the associated people make corrections before sharing. 

6. Don’t Assume IT-Only Solutions Work the Same as RPA

Although IT-only solutions have been around longer than RPA, the functions vary. It’s important to note that many IT-only solutions take longer to implement and have a longer window to see a return on investment. 

7. Do Use AI to Manage and Organize Documents

Freight document management is sped up dramatically by incorporating AI into the process. Companies that maximize on full automation see an increase in the analytics utilized to manage documents simply to search through records for more than the first title.

8. Don’t Forget to Stay Apprised of Changing Document Requirements

Despite the hopes of completely handing over managing critical documents to automation, the system still requires human oversight. By maintaining awareness of local and federal document requirement changes, freight forwarders can then re-train their RPA system to generate documents that satisfy requirements. 

9. Do Integrate Document Management With Invoicing and Payment Processes

Documents related to the freight bill process are undoubtedly one of the largest sources of paperwork a freight forwarding business must manage. By integrating automated document processing technology, companies are better prepared to handle new and returning customers.

10. Don’t Forget to Follow Through on Outstanding Invoices

Although many might not consider outstanding invoice notifications as part of customer service best practices, others might debate otherwise. Automating document processing equips forwarders to clearly communicate at every step, leaving fewer customers in the dark.

Create a Better Freight Document Processing Strategy With RPA Labs

By incorporating an automated document processing technology, freight forwarders can drastically minimize manual workload and have remote access at any location. To learn how these document processing tips and more can add value to your business, schedule a demo with RPA Labs today

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