“Looks good on paper” is a traditional saying for ideas that sound right. But isn’t it time we start to say something looks good without paper? Because in the electronic age, who wants to deal with paper anymore? Forms, receipts – dabbled in a little chipotle sauce from the drive thru…no, frankly even paper does not “look good on paper” anymore.

Paper Slows Lanes Down

At rail terminals, a J-1 must detail damage to the unit, container information, shipping information, drayman involved, time of ingate/outgate – all which must be detailed during the ingate AND outgate processes. Likewise, at a marine terminal, an EIR is required when transferring a cargo container from one vessel to another, or to a shipping terminal. The receipt includes the container number, vessel/voyage code, stacking position, stowage position.

That’s quite a bit of printing. Luckily, printers never malfunction. Ermm…

Okay yeah, printers malfunction. The reality is that printers are one of the only mechanical components of an otherwise modern, automated gate. Outdoor conditions tend to wreak havoc on electromechanical devices, so even the best printer (our own) may wear out faster than the rest of the kiosk. More importantly, regarding time wasted and money spent, the terminal suffers many recurring costs associated with printing:

Time wasted while the driver waits on the printer

More time wasted if the driver starts organizing all that paper

Even more time wasted when the paper roll runs out and the lane shuts down

Finally, the money spent to replenish the paper

And at the end of the day, that paper comes from trees, too. And who doesn’t like trees?

Time for a Change

Isn’t it time the logistics industry offers the same choices you get at a mall? Most retailers now offer consumers a choice between a printed or emailed receipt. Why? Because it’s economically and administratively better for both parties.

Hey, wait. Isn’t there an app for that?

Various mobile apps are in use at some terminals today, but the functionality across the available apps is inconsistent. Additionally, overall adoption rates by truckers have been less than stellar and terminals still need to provide app-less drivers with a receipt.

So, what’s the Alternative? Go Paperless with NASCENT

At NASCENT, we believe that terminals should offer the ability to have a ticket/receipt emailed instead of printed. No pesky mobile applications, and a great alternative to paper receipts. In terminals that currently have functioning printers in the kiosks, NASCENT’s SYNAPSE™AGS can provide the driver the choice between printed, emailed or both! In addition, some SYNAPSE™ AGS installations can be configured to save the driver’s preference to his/her profile and automatically recall it at the time of the gate transaction.

The only party that doesn’t profit from this solution? NASCENT. As the vendor for the paper, we lose that revenue. Which probably explains why other gate vendors aren’t offering this simple solution. But our loss is your gain. And maybe we can spare a few trees.