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"How Can Autorating Benefit Your Business and Customer Experience?"



Years ago, when I worked in logistics, I witnessed an incident that could have been easily avoided.

 

One Friday afternoon, a disgruntled customer claimed he was being overcharged. He insisted that he had agreed on new rates with our sales rep, yet no record of this could be found. The sales rep was nowhere to be found, adding to the chaos. When we finally tracked him down, the truth emerged: the new freight rate agreement did exist. It was tucked away in a filing cabinet behind his desk, hidden in plain sight all along...


Within any organization, with so many people involved in a shipment, keeping track of charges is difficult. Rates need updating, and all costs that need to be charged must be done so as efficiently as possible. Many logistics service providers, freight forwarders, and customs brokers have found that using the autorating module in CargoWise One streamlines their rating process.


Traditional rating involves one person knowing the rates, costing the job by writing up a job card, for someone else to key in the charges, and invoicing the job. There was room for error.

 

Using CargoWise One for quoting and autorating ensures accuracy, transparency, efficiency and time saving helping to maintain positive customer relationships and streamline operations. With the rates captured in your CargoWise One solution, changes to rates can be done easily, and you can invoice at the push of a button.   You can even use the software to publish rate changes to clients affected.


In CargoWise One, the rating is controlled by the tariff. You can set up a company tariff (for general or generic rates) and client-specific tariffs (rates set for a client). The solution contains various calculators to calculate the correct rate per kg/m3/unit/HB etc. It is a matter of selecting the correct calculator for what you are setting up the tariff.


Rates and tariff can also be set conditionally, so the rate/charges are only calculated under specific circumstances, ie: from a specific agent/specific commodities/specific origin etc.


Setting up autorating has a few tricks and traps, getting help understanding these ticks and traps can remove a lot of frustration & accelerate the use of autorating, allowing you to trouble shoot and solve any issues that might popup quickly and effectively. 

 

Why would you want to use autorating?

- A centralized place for your rates.

- Quick application of all applicable rates. 

- The calculators are amazing.

- Integration between other modules within CargoWise One, i.e., quotations, bookings, freight, customs, and invoicing.

 

The benefits of autorating are:

Accuracy: Improved accuracy in rate calculations, reducing human error.

Efficiency: Time savings from automating repetitive tasks, allowing staff to focus on higher-value activities.

Cost Management: Better cost control and transparency with consistent and accurate rate applications.

Scalability: Ability to handle large volumes of transactions seamlessly.

Customer Satisfaction: Enhanced customer service through faster and more reliable rate quotes.

 

Going back to my opening example, if the company had been using autorating, and the rep had quoted his client from within CargoWise One, then the air operations clerk would have been alerted that:

 

1. There could possibly be a new rate available.

2. They would have known what the new rate was.

3. They could have raised the question with the rep before the invoice was raised to the client – saving the embarrassment of an erroneous invoice.

4. The expense involved in a number of staff searching for rates, locating the rep, and issuing credit notes and new invoices would have been avoided.

5. Having a disgruntled client would have been avoided.

 

So, if autorating is so wonderful, why isn’t everyone using it?

 

Well, the two main challenges are:

 

Initial Setup: You need to learn how to set up rating on day one. We have various solutions for this in the form of one-on-one consulting or attending one of our autorating workshops.

Ongoing Maintenance: Rates will change. They always will. However, using well-set-up tariffs, you can minimize the work involved in applying the changes within your system to ensure continued accuracy.

 

There are best practices for implementing autorating


Data accuracy - Set up the correct data on day one, data accuracy is so important. The more accurate the data you put into your software, the more accurate the results you get out.

Training - Get the training you need. There are a couple of different approaches to training for autorating. What works for you depends on the structure of your company, but you will likely want to consider a little end user training for those who are doing the autorating, and administrator training for those who are maintaining your systems autorating.

 

In conclusion, Autorating is a time saver, it improves your customers' experience with you, and it enhances your cost management.


If you want to use autorating to improve your billing process, let us know. We have two workshops designed for administrators – Autorating: An Introduction, and Advanced Autorating, we can add you to the list of interested parties for when dates are confirmed.


If workshops are not your thing, (or you want to get started sooner) we also offer one-on-one sessions where we can work with you on your specific rate setup.  If you are using Autorating already and need a refresher on how to maintain your rates let us know and we can have one of our consultants assist you.

 

Have a great month,

 

Sandi




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