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Descartes Systems Group has created a system for controlling the flow of goods across the retail community. Delivered in the vendor's federated Global Logistics Network (GLN), the cloud-based tool was designed to address the post-purchase order process for retailers. It combines multiple logistics capabilities, including global trade compliance, inventory and purchase-order visibility, transportation management, and the yard and dock-door flow control of distribution center operations. As Descartes noted, logistics flow control involves tight collaboration among multiple parties, including the retailer and its transportation providers, customs brokers, consolidators and freight forwarders, as well as each of those entities' suppliers. Proper compliance requires cooperation among all parties. To develop the new tool, Descartes drew on Microsoft technologies, which allow tens of thousands of users across thousands of companies in its federal community to use cloud-based capabilities for the management of hundreds of thousands of purchase orders and shipments, and billions of dollars worth of inventory. The service is accessible by the GLN community from browser-based mobile devices running Microsoft operating systems. Descartes' Federated Network claims to connect more than 35,000 trading partners around the world.
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