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C.H. Robinson speeds up customs clearing in The Netherlands and Germany

Founded in 1905, C.H. Robinson is one of the world’s largest third party logistics (3PL) providers, with 2015 gross revenues of $13.5 billion. The company provides freight transportation and logistics, outsource solutions, produce sourcing and information services to 110,000 customers through a network of offices in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. To meet their customers’ freight needs, C.H. Robinson has contractual relationships with 68,000 transportation providers worldwide, including contract motor carriers, railroads, air freight carriers, and ocean carriers. With the service and dedication of 13,159 employees, a performance-driven culture, and a proven track record of success, the company has built a strong reputation as an industry leader.

Need for speed

In order to optimize their European activities, mainly by simplifying and accelerating processes in Germany and The Netherlands, C.H. Robinson began looking for a smarter and stronger software solution for their customs clearance operations. With previous systems, data capture and system monitoring grew increasingly difficult. The final decision to choose Scope from Riege was the result of a strict selection process. This effort finally determined Scope was the most convincing and appropriate solution because the rapidly growing company needed a time-saving and highly efficient software product “and that is what we found with Scope from Riege” said Bob van Leeuwen, Customs Manager at C.H. Robinson Europe.

Smooth is a duty

In September 2015, Bob and his Business Analyst colleague Anurag Garg decided to implement Scope in both Amsterdam and Rotterdam in the Netherlands. Over the course of several meetings, participants analyzed demands and defined the requirements for an easier overall work flow. Some additional modifications were requested, and once delivered, users were able to execute very efficient operations with significant time savings.

“I want to thank you for the smooth transition to your Scope customs module. Talking to the users, I didn’t hear any negative feedback. Most common comment is the friendly layout and excellent speed. Perfect job done.”

– Bob van Leeuwen, Customs Manager at C.H. Robinson Europe

All that counts

Subsequent to this very smooth start, Bob and Anurag decided to accelerate the launch in Germany to February 1st, 2016. Both the Riege and C.H. Robinson project teams managed the migration of all relevant data and scheduled training plans for employees. As of February 2016, 113 C.H. Robinson staff in the Netherlands and in Germany handle their customs processes with Scope. In The Netherlands, 27 users in 2 branches utilize Scope AGS-import, Scope AGS-export, Scope NCTS and Scope NL PD. In Germany, 86 users in 5 branches handle their customs duties with Scope ATLAS Einfuhr, Scope ATLAS AES and Scope ATLAS NCTS. Consequently, only three weeks after the successful live date, Bob decided to add the German harbor connection for Bremen to the application and assigned users to send harbor orders via Scope to BHT.

Business without borders

Savings are a rule – and with Scope, an inevitable result. C.H. Robinson now have a single smart software solution for The Netherlands and Germany and the high efficiency of Scope substantially benefits and supports their growing business operation in terms of both money and time saving. “C.H. Robinson is a perfectly organized company. It was our great pleasure to provide our services with the project team of CHR and we are very satisfied to see C.H. Robinson as a Riege customer in The Netherlands and in Germany,” said Johannes Riege, President of Riege Software International, confident that the two companies will continue to co-operate on future business ventures.

Ready for take-off

The focus for the near future is C.H. Robinson’s air freight customs clearance in Germany, and in particular the huge Chicago consolidations with up to 10 – 12 LDP and UDP. There is a clear recognition that the customs process for these large movements need significantly smarter handling to allow smoother, more lucrative operations. On a technical level, the enhanced field tags for MRN numbers in HAWBs (from 12 to 999) proved a challenge which had to be mastered. The most obvious target is the goal of saving time during critical Saturday morning hours of operation. The team of experts assembled for the project estimate that savings of about 6 hours per week are realistic – just for the Chicago operations. And this is only the beginning. Initial meetings have been conducted with Tim Bräuder, Gateway Manager Frankfurt and Peter Wachsmuth, Export Manager of C.H. Robinson Worldwide. A test phase is scheduled. We are ready for take-off.

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