Track & Trace

The term track & trace most commonly refers to electronic consignment tracking. Tracking makes it possible to determine the location of a consignment in real time across the entire transport chain–from the starting point up to the delivery at the receiver’s location.

Track = determination of the current status
Trace = transparency of the precise consignment history

This term is familiar to end consumers from the consignment tracking of packages in e-commerce. Making it possible to monitor the status of the consignment increases customer satisfaction and allows for planning security, even though the additional coding and reading out of data costs time and money.

Innovative information technologies that process and use accompanying information (advice data) are especially important for the smooth display of the consignment’s location. This data includes:

  • Identification information: identifies articles/packages/loading units.
  • Sender information: documents place of origin of the goods and sender data.
  • Destination information: includes the destination and the receiver.
  • Control information: defines the delivery route, stopovers and data on storage locations.

The provision of the accompanying information can be implemented via direct labelling on articles, packaging units or loading units. However, this information is usually transmitted via corresponding barcodes that can be read out with a data collection device. That way, the consignment status for tracking is set. Ideally, the tracing technology works both indoors and outdoors. Among other things, GPS, satellite-supported systems and Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or RFID technology are used.

In logistics, for forwarding companies and transport companies, Track & Trace refers to the entire tracking of packaging or loading units, both inside and outside of the company. In a TMS (transport management system), Track & Trace is used for tracking cargo. With the current location data, the ETA (estimated time of arrival) of the goods can be calculated and the receiver can be informed.

Goals of Track & Trace

  • Transparent supply chain
  • Determination of lost packages via the last registered location
  • Optimisation of the dispatch operations
  • Complete documentation
  • Monitoring of entire production chains

With the help of the telematics app CarLo inTOUCH, Soloplan’s TMS CarLo can also track the vehicles via the positioning functionality and retrace the tour history at any time. The calculation of the ETA is currently carried out via geofencing. With the add-on for air and sea freight, CarLo inAIR&SEA, you can even track containers and sea freight.