Use case: System Alliance improves predictability and accelerates handling with the EIKONA Notification module and its IVR system.
The problem: data gaps in advance shipping notifications
End consignees still only provide a landline number for just over a quarter of all shipments. While an automatic notification by text or email can be sent without any additional effort, these landline-only cases required employees at System Alliance partners to pick up the phone themselves. It usually took several call attempts and long phone conversations to successfully notify the consignee of the delivery and communicate all the relevant advance information. Notifications by phone turned into a time hog and often slowed down the entire operation and all business processes, even to the point of delaying delivery because shipments had to be stored somewhere temporarily. To close this stubborn data gap, reduce people's workload and shorten process steps as volumes increased, System Alliance Netzwerk GmbH started looking for a digital solution for phone-based notifications.
The solution: easily integrated phone notifications
The freight forwarders of System Alliance, a general cargo alliance, have been using an EIKONA Logistics solution for providing automatic notifications by text or email for several years. That makes them ideal candidates for adding the EIKONA Notification module with the IVR system. The phone notification in the application can easily be accessed by all users: If a freight forwarder wants to notify a consignee of a delivery using a landline number, they simply select the appropriate option for the advance shipping notification. The call to announce the shipment is then placed fully automatically. Not only does the IVR system provide the consignee with all the advance information about the delivery, the consignee can also choose a preferred delivery date and time from the available time slots. If none of the suggested options fit, the software alerts the freight forwarder that the consignee wants a callback. If the person receiving the call hangs up without confirming a time slot for the delivery, the system generates an error message. To reach the highest possible response rate, the IVR system will make up to four call attempts at different times of the day.
Successful notification is essential for smooth processes and timely deliveries, especially given the growing B2C business and the increasing volumes of general cargo. At System Alliance, shipment announcements and notifications are now provided in one of three ways:
- Automatically by email or text
- Automatically by IVR system
- In individual cases and if requested by the customer, through personal communication
Each freight forwarder in the network directly determines the script used for notifications, whether provided by email, text or phone call.
By introducing the EIKONA Notification module's IVR system at System Alliance, we have increased automation even more – and we did so almost without any additional effort. That saves our partners a lot of time, allows shipments to move smoothly through the system and reduces the strain on transloading terminals.
Logistics and IT Projects, System Alliance Netzwerk GmbH
Result: reliable advance shipping notifications for best-case logistics
Since integrating the IVR system in the EIKONA Notification module, we have been automatically notifying consignees of over 70 percent of all shipments in the System Alliance network – and that number is rising every day. We also slashed manual calls by more than half in most use cases. The time savings primarily reduce workloads for employees at freight forwarding companies and offer many other benefits. System Alliance's regional centres can use their staff and resources more efficiently. Precise delivery planning and preparation also significantly reduces production times. Ideally, shipments can move through the process without any interruptions: Due to early notifications and rapid delivery scheduling, shipments can be loaded and delivered right after arriving at the receiving facility. This improves efficiency levels, especially for small transloading terminals that now require less floor space for notified shipments. The final consignees also benefit from fast, delay-free deliveries on their preferred date.
About the company
System Alliance Netzwerk GmbH
Headquartered in Niederaula, System Alliance manages an established, Germany-wide network of medium-sized freight forwarding partners. The general cargo alliance is synonymous with sophisticated logistics for distribution and procurement. Customers enjoy fixed standard transit times, time-sensitive deliveries, time slot services and custom value-added services. You can learn more about the logistics service provider's services here.
How does the IVR system work?
An IVR system can automate the process of providing notifications by phone. The system automatically places the call to the landline number stored in the system and then announces the delivery by first stating all relevant shipment data. The IVR system then reads out time slots as well as response options and offers a callback option. If no response is selected, the customer is given the option of repeating the announcement.