SAP launches supply chain app for rail car management

SAP AG has expanded its supply chain applications to include rail car management and customer freight invoicing.

Now, mySAP Supply Chain Management (SCM) will allow companies that rely on rail car shipping -- such as businesses in the chemical, oil and gas, consumer products and mining industries -- to lower freight costs, more effectively manage supply networks and improve customer service, the Walldorf, Germany-based company said in a statement.

The company said mySAP SCM with the new rail car management engine allows companies to track inventory shipped via rail cars in real time and improves the accuracy of customer freight invoicing.

The new application lets companies scan for adverse conditions, such as rail cars that are delayed, off-route or overdue, or for a freight car that has been improperly loaded, is mechanically defective or has safety violations.

SAP said the rail car engine constantly monitors rail cars and alerts the transportation management system to any unexpected changes in conditions. The system then makes the necessary adjustments, saving a company time and money. According to SAP, by accessing route information, including segments, transit times and distances between rail junctions and passing points, transportation planners can more accurately manage their equipment.

The customer freight invoicing engine also allows companies to simultaneously manage buying and selling tariffs with an eye toward competitive freight discounts, equalization and out-of-territory moves, SAP said.

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