To ensure that their goods on pallets are transported in the best possible way, companies often have to call on freight forwarders who have a real knowledge of the various modes of transport (road, air, sea and rail), costs, deadlines, market players, legal and administrative rules, etc.
This assignment is governed by a service contract signed between the two parties. In parallel, transport contracts are also signed between the freight forwarder and the carriers.
The international freight transport market is highly regulated by law and the freight forwarder must comply with strict rules to gain access to it.
"In the international land transport sector, we have seen the emergence of digital freight forwarders," says Nicolas Petit, Director of Transport Operations at Viapost.
The digitalisation of the profession makes it possible to remove certain operational constraints and make transport management and monitoring more reliable: "At Viapost, we have taken this digital approach to collect regulatory documents and check their legality. We also have a TMS which provides our customers with a real-time view of the routing of their goods. The drivers we work with use a PDA , which is a digital mobile solution that allows the PODs to be uploaded into the TMS", explains Nicolas PETIT.
Dating from 2020 and applicable for 4 years, it tightens the rules for international transport:
Using its freight centres in several regions of France and working with a base of strong national and international partners, Viapost is increasing its share in Europe and is developing significantly internationally. Nicolas PETIT explains that "as a freight forwarder, in order to have the most optimised management of transport flows, we have to see the bigger picture - outside France. This international vision allows us to take advantage of the paths taken by carriers to optimise costs, lead times and routes".
Thanks to its historical business of managing universal services, Viapost has an operational infrastructure that enables its freight forwarding divisions to monitor its national and international customers' shipments in real time 24/7. “This enables us to anticipate and act constantly, making us agile and responsive, a real plus," points out Nicolas PETIT.
At the beginning of 2022, in a complex geopolitical context, the French Red Cross is looking for solutions to transport essential goods across Europe for the benefit of the Ukrainian population.
"Thanks to its European network of partner carriers, Viapost was entrusted with this large-scale mission within a timeframe constrained by the humanitarian situation," says Nicolas Petit.
148 convoys are set up from Spain, Belgium or France to Romania, Hungary, Moldova, Austria and of course, Ukraine.
"We also manage the entire distribution of 60 points of sale in Italy from a logistics site in Spain, on a just-in-time basis, on behalf of a retail chain," explains Nicolas PETIT.
Viapost offers various international services depending on the needs, constraints, characteristics of the goods and deadlines:
 TMS = Transport Management System
 PDA = Personal Digital Assistant
 POD = Proof Of Delivery