e-CMR Hub

Cross platform handling of Business to Business transactions via interoperable e-CMR’s.

Country Lead

Smart Logistics

The Challenge

Goods issuing and reception in business to business is a paper based process. Pitfalls in rules and regulations and a fragmented system landscape lead to a way of working where truck drivers process an enormous amount of consignment notes, also known as CMR’s. With this paper consignment note or CMR they transfer the ownership of goods from sender to carrier to receiver. The CMR is important for logistic service providers, playing an important role for insurance, exception handling and inspection. Being unable to show a CMR on inspection results in a fine.

This paper based process is being replaced with eCMR (electronic Customer Relationship Management) protocols which define a standard data set and guidelines for e-signing. While most EU countries accepted eCMR in 2021, 99% of cross-border transport operations within the territory of the EU still involve paper-based documents at one stage of the operation or another. Although multiple eCMR providers developing technical solutions for the digitalisation of transport have flourished in the last years, they often work with different solutions and processes. Despite the efforts to integrate different platforms, it is still challenging for customers to select an eCRM provider that can guarantee the adoption of its solution across the whole supply chain.

On the government side there is the challenge of gaining access to the e-CMR transactions for inspections. Today this is organised for government employees via login on separate e-CMR platforms. In the Benelux this means that road inspectors have login credentials for 13 e-CMR platforms already.

The growing concern among main actors involved in the supply chain is the limited interoperability of the various systems and technical solutions, absence of overall coordination and standards for data definition, representation, exchange and preservation.

The Solution

Via the datahub in this experiment, interoperability is organised for e-CMR providers and Government. A neutral e-CMR data hub endorsed by business and government is needed to enable e-CMR providers to scale up and boost cross border digitisation. The enablement of cross platform e-signing and sharing of e-CMR data for inspections by government officials forms the foundation to increase the acceptance of e-CMR solutions.

The development of a trust service on interoperability between e-CMR providers will give producers and transporters the confidence their operational business process is supported, no matter which certified e-CMR provider is involved.

Business projections – scalability

There is business value around interoperability in the eCMR market and the solution will speed up the innovation curve as new companies and providers increase adoption using the same API.