Four months after the launch of Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3 more is known about the capabilities and boundaries of the new R3 Transportation Management module. The CAPcargo specialists have analyzed the features.

The headlines of the new Transportation Management Module in R3 sound interesting: Transportation Planning. Rating and Routing. Appointment Scheduling. Freight Reconciliation. At a first glance, it looks like a complete package, but a closer look reveals fundamental differences in the understanding of the role of a TransportationManagementSystem.

The solution supports nicely a manual (no drag&drop) dispatching of order lines on a so called “load planning workbench” into units. The demand comes always from a sales-, purchase- or transfer order. A unit can be for example a 20’ container or a truck. The units have a capacity (weight/volume), but no reservation logic is included. An order line can be splitted into several loads.

Rate engines to be developed

Some very basic rate engines are part of the standard solution. For a more advanced pricing (e.g. international transports) enhancements (developments) are necessary. Interesting is the rate shopping feature, which lists the possible vendors and routes for a certain load. A described use case of such a rate engine is to establish a weblink to the carrier. During the rate shopping process, a request is sent to the carrier’s web service. On the route, the needed geographical segments are registered. The segments are mainly used for a pricing purpose.

The appointment scheduling is used to schedule the warehouse docks (which load is handled at which dock). A tour planning to define the expected arrival time of a truck at a customer’s place is not possible.

Finally, the freight reconciliation functionality is calculating the foreseen freight charges and helps to operationally verify the incoming vendor invoices. After the “reconciliation” of a vendor invoice, financial transactions in the general ledger are generated. It is important to understand that no accruals are posted in the general ledger.

Good for smaller organizations with low supply chain requirements

For organizations, which so far usually have handled their logistics requirements outside of AX (e.g. export orderlines into an excel file) the new module is certainly of a help. For manufacturing or distribution companies,

1. which are handling a high quantity of orders on a daily base, or

2. the supply chain is not simply ending at the dock (total control required) and

3. an increased efficiency of internal processes or cost optimizations are needed

the CAPcargo ISV solution is still a must.

CAPcargo brings visibility to the supply chain process

CAP.Trade&Distribution is building a bridge between sales, warehouse and transportation. Time is sensitive and warehouse picking and transportation planning are parallel running processes. To give an example: The automatized planning is showing the latest tracking results and ETA dates/times directly on sales order, while transport planner see on a tour or tour stop level the picking status of the individual sales order. An increased customer service value. The CAPcargo ShipmentBuilder is managing in the background the entire logic, which orders resp. order lines can be combined into a single transport order. An effective manner to cut transportation costs.

Der CAPcargo Sendungsbilder verwaltet im Hintergrund die gesamte Logik, welche Aufträge resp. Auftragszeilen in einem Transportauftrag kombiniert werden können. Eine effektives Werkzeug um Transportkosten zu senken.