APM Terminals (APMT) has introduced application programming interface (API) accessibility to build stronger, digital supply chains for logistics customers.
In a statement, APMT said APIs allow data to be transmitted in just seconds from the terminals’ operating systems directly to customers own transport management or logistics systems.
“We have co-developed our APIs with customers looking for real-time data to give them better visibility at the container terminal level,” said David Francis, APM Terminals Head of Digital Customer Solutions.
Once a customer queries a container or multiple containers, they’ll receive the latest status of the container instantly, the terminal operator said.
“By creating better integration with our data through APIs we can improve decision-making for our customers and remove supply chain inefficiencies, which are costing the industry billions each year,” Francis explained.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, cargo visibility issues have been exacerbated due to, among other things, transport and travel restrictions, reduced capacity and additional import/export controls. At the same time, demand patterns literally changed overnight as employees started to work remotely.
The exponential increase in ecommerce and the urgency of home deliveries brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the fact that for some customers, the delivery experience has become integral to the product itself. For companies wanting to gain a competitive edge, getting this right is essential.
Currently, logistics companies spend a lot of time calling or emailing for cargo status updates. Over the last few months, this has been exacerbated by critical cargo for medical support and delays caused by reduced staffing. Apart from being inefficient in terms of human capital, this can also lead to error and delays.
APMT is making APIs available to track import availability at container level, including container data, estimated time of arrival and date of discharge from the vessel, the status of the container, any holds on the container, and whether a truck appointment has been made.
Additionally, APMT offering an API to track vessel schedules in real-time, including estimated arrival and departure times, and cut-off times for delivering a variety of container types.
The terminal operator’s APIs use familiar standard protocols, meaning that implementation by the customer is a fast, one-time process that saves time and IT resources. Any maintenance on the API is carried out by APM Terminals.
The first locations to support the import availability and vessel schedule APIs are APM Terminals Pier 400 Los Angeles, the company’s largest container terminal on the US East Coast serving as the Atlantic gateway to the US and Canada – and APM Terminals Mobile, Alabama – the company’s US Gulf gateway to the Southeast, Midwest and Central Canada.