SSAB’s road transportation digitalized through eTransport
Digitalization is part of logistics today. Innovative technology makes it possible to track and plan shipments more efficiently. Client requirements for transport chain visibility and traceability are also recognized by SSAB. The first step in digitalization of the transport chain is to adopt electronic data interchange. Digitalizing information makes it more adaptable for numerous applications as digital services are developed.
SSAB has systematically been developing electronic data interchange for years in road transportation. In 2013, SSAB sites in Finland adopted electronic data interchange with transport operators. The concept was named eTransport. Today, the same system is used for transport orders and monitoring in Finland and Sweden. eTransport is used at all SSAB sites and service centers in Finland, as well as the Borlänge, Oxelösund and Finspång sites in Sweden.
eTransport has become increasingly popular over the years, and currently around 60 transport operators are using the solution. SSAB’s sites use the system for placing orders electronically with transport operators. The operator confirms the order electronically and submits any additional data required by the site, including vehicle registration numbers and pick-up times. Once the transport operator picks up the shipment from our site, the pick-up time is logged into eTransport. When the shipment arrives, the transport operator logs the actual delivery time into the system. The operator can also report any inconsistencies or other events affecting the shipment during transportation with eTransport.
“Technically speaking, eTransport is a combination of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) and cloud services. Everything revolves around transport-related data, which is exchanged through a harmonized data transfer interface. Standardized data and technical solutions have facilitated connecting new operators to eTransport. Both SSAB and the transport operators have access to the same view and data content,” explains SSAB Europe’s eTransport Project Manager Juha Harju-Panula.
“Once a transport operator has been connected to eTransport, they are able to communicate with all SSAB sites. The transport operator can choose to connect to eTransport with a mobile device, web browser, or by implementing an EDI connection in their own system”, he continues.
Benefits of eTransport
The eTransport concept improves cost-efficiency for road transportation through automated data processing. Electronic transport orders reduce manual labor and the risk of human errors.
SSAB’s sites are also able to schedule operator arrivals more accurately and prepare for upcoming loading processes in advance. This shortens unloading times, facilitating loading and ensuring that products are delivered to customers faster.
eTransport supports SSAB’s delivery accuracy targets by improving transport chain transparency. Some road transport can already now be followed in real time, which enables information about in consistencies electronically from eTransport. In future, transport tracking information will be available to customers through the customer portal as well as through eTransport.