The shipment type contains all the important control features for a shipment, such as the number range, whether the shipment is inbound or outbound, how leg determination is performed, and which leg indicator has been set for a shipment of this type. You can also enter a selection variant for the shipment type. The values defined in the variant appear on the selection screen when you create a shipment document of this type.
The system supports the following shipment types:
- Individual shipment
- Collective shipment
- Transportation chain
An individual shipment includes
- One or more deliveries
- One point of departure
- One destination
- One mode of transport
A collective (or milk-run) shipment includes
- One or more deliveries
- Several points of departure
- Several destinations
- One mode of transport
A transportation chain is useful if you are dealing with deliveries that will be transported using multiple modes of transportation (and are thus processed by different departments at the transportation planning point).
The department responsible for transportation by land organizes truck shipments and another department organizes ships and their cargo for goods shipment by sea. Each mode of transport (truck and ship) requires individual shipping papers. Each mode of transportation requires separate transportation papers, meaning that you need to create a shipment document for the overland leg and another for the overseas leg of the journey.
If shipments use more than one mode of transportation, it is a good idea to create a transportation chain. Because you will have a separate shipment document for each mode of transportation, you can maintain separate output, texts, statuses, and so on.
Example for using a transportation chain
At shipping points 0001 and 0002 in Germany, a large number of deliveries are to be sent to customers in the United States by the beginning of December. You and your customers agreed that part of the shipment be sent carriage paid and the other part carriage, insurance, freight paid to (CIF) New York only (meaning that the end customer must pay carriage, insurance and freight from New York to the final destination).
The goods are to be transported by land within Germany, by sea from Hamburg to New York, and by land again in the United States. It is, of course, possible to document the entire process in a shipment document. However, problems can arise if certain parts of the shipment functions are used:
- For instance, data on the shipment status always refers to the entire shipment document (for example, the status "Loading finished"). However, in this example loading takes place several times.
- For the same reason, an assignment of dates and texts to a handling unit is difficult because these can change within the shipment document. The very definition of a handling unit is in itself problematic.
- Output to be created in combination with the shipment document contains all data for the entire shipment document. When the truck driver leaves the shipping point, his printout also contains data that refers to the ship. This is unnecessary and a nuisance. Processing several required preliminary legs at different times also requires that output be printed at different times.
In cases like this, it makes more sense to use a transportation chain in which deliveries are passed on in a series of different shipments. In the above example, you would create several shipment documents in the system: ten preliminary leg shipments by truck, one main leg by ship, and if necessary, eight subsequent legs by truck again. That way, you avoid the problem of assigning deadlines, output, or texts to the packaging material.
With that in mind, you might put together your transportation chain like this:
- Create a main leg
At transportation planning point 0001, you create a main leg shipment for all deliveries to be sent by ship from Hamburg to New York City at the beginning of December. There should be a special shipment type set for this set in Customizing. This could include the following settings:
- Set the leg indicator field for the shipment header to Main leg. The system will recognize that this shipment must be linked to other shipments.
- The leg determination type for this shipment type should be ‘ ‘.This means that no automatic leg determination will be carried out. This is reasonable since the Hamburg-to-New York leg does not include any points of departure or destinations from the delivery (however, this data will be taken into account during leg determination).
- Route determination resulting in the Hamburg-to-New York route may have already been carried out in the delivery. If you want to copy this route automatically into the main leg shipment, you can specify in Customizing that routes must be copied into the shipment document. Copying starts as soon as you set the Planned status in the shipment document.(Note that the route in the deliveries must be unique.) At the same time, the service agent can also be copied automatically from the delivery provided you have made the appropriate settings in Customizing and that the same service agent has been assigned to the deliveries.
When the deliveries were created, they were given transportation planning status A, meaning they were ready for transportation planning. Now, after creating the main leg shipment, these deliveries have transportation planning status B, meaning that they have been partially planned (since a main leg shipment needs preliminary and possibly subsequent legs).
- Create preliminary legs
The preliminary leg shipments that are used to send the goods from shipping points 0001 and 0002 to the ship in Hamburg can be organized much faster than the ship itself, which is why they are planned at this time. You must now combine all deliveries in the main leg shipment into one or more preliminary leg shipments. You can do this in the Create Shipment transaction.
To do this, you must select all deliveries in the main leg shipment. The transportation planning status of the delivery may be helpful in determining which deliveries are in the main leg shipment since their status is now set to B instead of A. Of course, this is not sufficient as a single selection criterion. He can enter further selection criteria that are used during delivery selection for the main leg. This may be impractical since you may not now what the selection criteria were or too many deliveries may be selected.
Therefore, it is better to specify the shipment number of the corresponding main leg shipment in the Reference to line when selecting deliveries. If you do not know the number, press F4 and a selection screen will appear. In this case, a further selection screen for shipment number selection appears. On this screen, you can specify the person who created the shipment document, the point of departure, and the date in order to determine the number of the main leg shipment.
You create shipments using the worklist you defined. If each delivery corresponds to exactly one truckload, the planner can call up the function Edit
You should use the following settings:
- Set the leg indicator to preliminary leg.
- Set the leg determination type to 1 (leg determination according to pick-up sequence and itinerary).
- Do not copy the route from the delivery. It may be a good idea to copy the service agent.
When the Planned status is set, leg determination begins, but the route is not copied from the deliveries. It will determine the pick-up sequence. In addition, the system suggests Hamburg as destination since the deliveries are part of a main leg shipment that runs from Hamburg to New York.
When the shipment is saved, the system updates the delivery status. The status for the carriage paid deliveries remains B (partially planned), since the second part of the Incoterm was left blank and the system assumes that a subsequent leg is required. The status of the deliveries with CIF New York is set to C (completely planned) since the second part of the Incoterm has been specified and the system assumes that a subsequent leg is not necessary.
- Create subsequent legs
You create subsequent legs the same way you create preliminary legs. Use these settings:
- Set the leg indicator to subsequent leg.
- Use category 1 for leg determination.
- Do not copy the route from the deliveries.
In order to create these shipments, search for deliveries with a transportation planning status of B. The system then finds only those deliveries for which a subsequent leg is to be created. If the Planned status is set, it also carries out leg determination. The system automatically suggests ‘New York’ as a point of departure, since the main leg shipment ends in New York. The sequence in which the goods are delivered (itinerary) is determined by the sequence in which the deliveries are displayed on the screen. If the subsequent leg shipments are saved, the transportation planning status of the corresponding deliveries is set to C (completely planned) since these deliveries now have preliminary, main, and subsequent legs.
Following these steps ensures that every delivery is included in the transportation chain. In the example, there are ten preliminary leg shipments to Hamburg followed by a main leg shipment and eight possible subsequent leg shipments in the United States. In this way, a group of deliveries forms a network of shipments.
- Monitor the transportation chain
In order to monitor the shipments, choose Environment ® Transportation info ® Shipment list or Environment ® Transportation info ® Transportat.network depending on whether you are processing orders, deliveries, or shipments. Worklists for transportation planning and processing may also provide an overview. To generate a worklist, enter one of the shipment numbers that make up the transportation network in the Reference to line. The system will then select all shipment documents in the network.