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5 Integration Nightmares (and How to Avoid Them) for a Seamless Shipping Workflow

Learn more about how scary a poorly integrated enterprise software stack truly is

What's the difference between a mime stuck in a box and your current disconnected supply chain software stack?

The mime can still communicate!

Okay, maybe that's a stretch for a mime's repertoire. But the point is: a disconnected tech stack leaves you stuck, unable to effectively communicate with different systems. This can lead to a nightmare scenario of data inconsistencies, manual workarounds, and limited visibility across your entire shipping process.

But there is good news – unlike a mime trapped in a box, there's an escape route from these integration nightmares: seamlessly integrated multi-carrier shipping software. This advanced shipping solution effortlessly connects to all your other systems, eliminating data silos, streamlining workflows, and giving you real-time insights into your entire supply chain.

Now, that's a punchline worth celebrating. So, what kind of nightmares do these integration challenges turn into? Read on to dive deeper into what a disconnected tech stack can levy on your retail, manufacturing, 3PL, wholesale distribution, or healthcare organization.

Disjointed systems can strangle shipping efficiency. Imagine the Order Management System (OMS), Warehouse Management System (WMS), Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software, and the rest of your tech stack operating as separate islands – unable to communicate effectively. [More on multi-carrier shipping software + warehouse management system] This fractured approach leads to a frustrating reality: wasted time, errors, and ultimately, unhappy customers.

Whether you lack shipping software altogether or have chosen a poorly designed solution, here are the top 5 culprits behind those nightmares:

1. Siloed Systems & Data Inconsistency: Without a multi-carrier shipping software system to connect your various platforms (like OMS or WMS), information gets trapped within individual software. As you work to push data between these disconnected systems, it can be misinterpreted or duplicated, leading to inaccurate inventory levels, incorrect shipping labels, and frustrated customers.

Why it’s a nightmare: A customer orders an item you think is in stock based on your OMS. However, due to disconnected systems, the order isn't automatically checked against your live inventory levels. This means your single carrier shipping system processes the order without realizing the item might be out of stock. This can lead to a backorder, delays in informing the customer, and potentially a lost sale.

2. Manual Data Input Headaches: The absence of multi-carrier shipping software creates a world of manual data entry. You're forced to constantly transfer shipping data between different software platforms by hand, a time-consuming and error-prone process. This slows down order fulfillment and increases the risk of mistakes like missed shipments or incorrect routing.

    Why it’s a nightmare: Your shipping team spends hours each day manually entering data from your order management system (OMS) into your single carrier shipping software. This not only wastes valuable time but also leaves room for human error, potentially impacting your ability to meet order fulfillment deadlines.

    Now let's say you have implemented multi-carrier shipping software, but it's not the right solution…

    3. Integration Nightmares with a Poor Shipping Solution: Not all multi-carrier shipping software solutions are created equal. A poorly designed shipping solution might consist of cobbled technology or an inflexible design, creating integration roadblocks with your existing systems like your WMS or OMS. This can hinder your ability to achieve a seamless workflow and limit the efficiency gains you expect from multi-carrier shipping software. [The Hidden Costs of a Disconnected Enterprise Software Stack]

    Why it’s a nightmare: You invest in a multi-carrier shipping software solution but integrating it with your existing warehouse management system proves to be a complex and expensive undertaking. This delays the benefits of the new system and limits your ability to streamline your fulfillment operations.

    4. Limited Scalability: As your business grows and your shipping needs evolve, a disconnected system can become a roadblock. Inflexible shipping software might struggle to integrate with new systems or handle increased shipping volume. This lack of scalability can hinder your ability to adapt and optimize your multi-carrier strategy.

    Why it’s a nightmare: You open a new distribution center, but your current shipping software can't handle the increased volume or integrate with the new fulfillment location due to lacking technical capabilities, internal resources, and/or inexperience handing multiple enterprise customers. Orders pile up, shipments get delayed, and frustration mounts. Not only do delays and disruptions lead to lost sales and unhappy customers, but you are also stuck in the slow lane – unable to capitalize on your expansion plans.

    5. Unreliable and Disruptive Updates: A versioned shipping software solution can be prone to downtime and forced upgrades that disrupt your critical operations. Downtime and buggy updates lead to delays, errors, and lost productivity. While a constantly changing interface creates confusion and frustration for your team. These issues aren’t only internal – disruptions lead to a poor customer experience and damaged brand reputation.

    Why it’s a nightmare: You're in the middle of your busy peak season when everything grinds to a halt. Your shipping software vendor has decided it's time for a forced upgrade. Now, your team is scrambling to learn a new interface, while orders languish and fulfillment stalls. This nightmare doesn't end there. The new version introduces bugs that break integrations, disrupting your workflows and causing compatibility issues. Downtime is inevitable and with it comes delays and inefficient shipping operations.

    ProShip is the multi-carrier shipping software solution designed to banish these integration nightmares. Here's how ProShip helps you achieve a smooth-running, efficient supply chain:

    • Versionless Architecture: Say goodbye to disruptive updates and data inconsistencies. ProShip's unique versionless architecture ensures your data remains consistent, eliminating the risk of downtime and errors caused by software updates.
    • Parcel-Focused Design: Built specifically for parcel shipping, ProShip streamlines workflows and simplifies integration. Its advanced, robust functionality makes it easy to manage your shipping needs without focusing on other technologies in the portfolio. [Learn more about why your shipping solution should be parcel-focused]
    • Scalability and Customization: ProShip adapts to your business, not the other way around. Its scalable shipping solution seamlessly handles increased order volume, expands to support new locations or omnichannel fulfillment strategies, and maintains peak performance during seasonal surges. Additionally, ProShip offers customization options to tailor the solution to your specific needs.
    • Powerful Partnerships and Integrations: ProShip isn't an island. We integrate seamlessly with leading technology providers in the parcel shipping space, including OMS, WMS, ERP, automation solutions, and more. This robust network of partnerships ensures your entire supply chain ecosystem works together effortlessly, eliminating data silos and streamlining operations.

    A seamless supply chain is critical for success in today's competitive market. By overcoming integration challenges, you can achieve greater efficiency, improve customer satisfaction, and optimize your overall business operations. [Want a checklist for a successful shipping software integration?]

    Ready to learn more about how ProShip can help you achieve a seamless supply chain workflow?

    Schedule a discovery call to see ProShip in action and learn more about how our industry-leading multi-carrier shipping software can seamlessly integrate into your enterprise software stack. Take control of your shipping and banish the integration nightmares for good!