We are looking for ways to more efficiently create and print fedex shipping
labels. Are there web services or other software from fedex that I can use?
Or 3rd party software that will do the specific functions I need it to do?
We currently use fedex ship manager with an ODBC connection to the IBM i to
semi automate the process.
I need a more granular way to interface with FEDEX. One step would record
the weight of the shipper carton and create a tracking number. Next step
would print a single FEDEX label. The third would create the master
tracking number and close the shipment as far as FEDEX is concerned.
What the warehouse does is pack items into shipper cartons. Each item is
picked from a picklist. Once the shipper is full it is closed and a shipper
label is printed. That shipper label has what we call an SSCC barcode
printed on it. That SSCC number is unique so it can always be tracked back
to the order.
Once the order is completely picked all the shippers are taken to the
shipping station where the FedEx shipping manager workstation is located.
We scan the SSCC barcode of one of the shipper cartons. Using the ODBC
connection to the IBM i all of the ship manager entry fields are populated.
It is at this point that the process starts to break down. If there are 4
shipper cartons the user enters that value in fedex ship manager, completes
the shipment and 4 fedex labels are printed. A master tracking number is
created along with 4 individual tracking numbers. Thru the ODBC
connection ship manager writes 4 records to a table on the i containing the
master tracking number, the tracking number and the SSCC carton number that
was scanned to populate the FEDEX fields to begin with.
The problem is those 4 tracking records written to my tracking number file
all contain the same SSCC carton number. So I can link a fedex tracking
number to a warehouse purchase order. But I cannot link it to the specific
items in the shipper of that tracking number. And secondly there are two
labels on the shipper carton where all we really need is the single FEDEX