TransFollow: the digital standard in the transport sector. We will be happy to explain how it works.
Below you will find the frequently asked questions (FAQs). Is your question not listed? Please contact your local distributor.
01. All about TransFollow
01. What is TransFollow?
TransFollow is an independent and neutral e-CMR platform. A digital solution that manages your consignment notes and creates supply chain visibility.
02. What are the benefits of using TransFollow?
TransFollow is a collaborative tool for senders, carriers and recipients. It creates a paper-free supply chain, simplifies administration, reduces failure costs, streamlines transport and creates supply chain visibility.
03. Is TransFollow the only provider?
No, but there is an important difference between TransFollow and other providers. TransFollow offers an integrated solution for all the partners in the chain: shippers, carriers and receivers. In addition, security is a key priority for TransFollow. TransFollow takes into account both national and international legislation and regulations (eProtocol). Other providers mostly focus on carrier processes.
04. Safeguarding your data?
We pay close attention to the way we handle information we have received or that is managed by third parties. TransFollow has secured this in procedures and works with an ISO27001-certified information management system. This applies to information provision to customers, suppliers as well as our employees and all other stakeholders.
05. Where will my data be hosted?
All data is hosted by AWS in Europe.
06. Is TransFollow legally compliant?
TransFollow offers a fully compliant solution respecting the UN e-CMR additional protocol (2008). Additionally, we offer market-based features that supports and enables flexibility in day to day practices.
07. Can I use TransFollow internationally?
Yes, you can. However, to comply with the CMR (road consignment note) regulations, the shipment sometimes must also be accompanied by a paper CMR waybill. Some domestic road consignment note regulations do not yet allow for paperless shipments.
08. In which countries can I use e-CMR?
Click here for an actual overview of countries that have signed the e-protocol.
09. Which other countries will sign the e-protocol soon?
More and more countries see the benefits of the e-CMR. So without a doubt more countries will sign the e-CMR protocol in the near future.
For instance, the three Benelux countries have launched the e-CMR Benelux pilot to investigate on cross-border scale whether the e-CMR as a control tool is at least as reliable and safe as its paper version. TransFollow is one of the official suppliers admitted to the pilot.
10. Which 3rd party software suppliers are connected to TransFollow already?
Please click here for the list of 3rd party software suppliers.
11. Is the TransFollow e-CMR solution regularly updated?
TransFollow has a dedicated team of developers continuously improving the solution based on user feedback. Every 3 weeks a new version is released. Users can benefit from the newest implemented features immediately. Click here to view our release notes.
13. Can we host ourselves?
No, you can’t. TransFollow is a platform and therefore is hosted by TransFollow itself.
14. Can I track my freight?
TransFollow doesn’t provide a track & trace system. However, the shipment can be followed during the whole process. All parties in the chain are informed in real-time about the status of the shipment (in draft, issues, in transit, delivered, cancelled).
02. TransFollow components
01. Which components make up TransFollow?
• TransFollow platform (API)
• TransFollow Portal
• TransFollow Android app
02. What is the TransFollow API?
Software components (i.e. ERP/WMS/TMS/FMS) can be connected to the TransFollow platform, each with their own specific functionalities. Via our public API, TransFollow’s e-CMR functionalities can be integrated into proprietary software through custom-made solutions.
03. What is the TransFollow Portal?
The TransFollow portal enables users to visualize and follow the status of their consignment notes. In the TransFollow portal you can search for a specific consignment note or ranges of consignment notes depending on some search criteria. It is also possible to export data from the TransFollow Portal in csv format and manage your account settings (i.e. notifications).
04. What is the TransFollow App?
The TransFollow App can be used by all chain partners to visualize, sign and follow the TransFollow digital consignment notes.
Its main purpose however is for drivers to be able to manage, modify, add information (e.g. registering packages or arrival and departure times) and finally to digitally sign for the consignment notes. To use the TransFollow app you need to have an account.
05. Is it available in Android and iOS?
The advanced full-option TransFollow application is available in Android, however the device needs to be at least Android 4.4. An iOS app is also available for consignors and consignees to sign for receipt.
03. How to connect to TransFollow?
01. How can I connect to TransFollow so I can start working with digital consignment notes?
Get in touch with the distributor or licensee in your country. They will support you in your integration process. Together you will involve your concerned partners to learn what our platform can offer and define the next steps to benefit from adoption of digital consignment notes. Or view the webpage “How to connect to TransFollow’.
02. I don't have consignment note software. Can I still use TransFollow?
If you don’t have consignment note software, you can use, for example, the Transport Portal which is a simple portal in collaboration with TransFollow to manage your entire E-CMR lifecycle.
03. Which software providers are connected to TransFollow?
Please check here for an up to date overview of the connected ERP, TMS, WMS and other software partners.
04. Is there a test environment for TransFollow?
Yes, a partner environment is available for users/integrators to set up the integration with TransFollow and test whether the connection with TransFollow is working properly.
05. Where can I find the appropriate documentation to help me in establishing a connection?
The technical manual can be found on developer.TransFollow.com.
06. Is it also possible to connect a self-built software system to TransFollow?
In principle, any system can be connected to TransFollow making use of our public API. Visit developer.TransFollow.com for more information.
07. Is it possible to connect TransFollow to a third party mobile solution?
Yes, this is possible. The TransFollow Android app consists of different functional components. Companies that have developed their own Android application (or make use of a third party solution) to support their logistics can integrate specific TransFollow Android app components which allows them to add e-CMR functionality to their company app.
08. Can TransFollow be installed on a board computer?
Yes definitely, contact your local distributor for more information.
09. Is there a GPS integration?
TransFollow does indeed support integration with GPS services. Addresses in the Android app are clickable and enable the user to launch any navigation app available on the device (Waze, Google Maps). Next to this we use GPS coordinates with the signature.
04. How to create and maintain a TransFollow account
01. Why is it necessary to create a TransFollow Account?
Every user needs an account in order to use TransFollow. An account is mandatory to fulfill any role in the e-CMR process and to inform you about the progress of the consignment note. (see our privacy statement and the Terms & Conditions in the portal. After registering, you will be able to create and submit consignment notes, track your shipments in real time, and sign your consignment notes digitally upon transfer or receipt, depending on your role (consignor, carrier, consignee).
02. Who is required to create an account?
An account is only required for the carrier and submitter role. Optionally an account can be created for consignors and consignees so they can make use of the benefits of the digital e-CMR solution. TransFollow offers alternative ways of signing so that non-registered users can sign assigned e-CMR’s.
03. What e-mail address should I link my TransFollow account to?
As user, you are free to choose an e-mail address to set up your account. Note: once you create an account, you cannot change the e-mail address associated with that particular account.
04. Are there costs involved in setting up a TransFollow Account?
No, creating an account is free.
05. Where and how can I create an account?
You can create an account in the TransFollow App, on the TransFollow portal, via the API.
06. Can I delete my account?
Yes, send us the account information and proof of ownership (password) and we can delete manually. We are obliged to do this when requested.
07. I’m a large consignor/consignee with a number of employees and I would like to have an overview through TransFollow, is this possible?
When you delegate your rights to your employees they can all sign for the consignment note while the party on the consignment note can still keep track of all its consignment notes.
05. Terminology, features & modules
01. What is TF approval?
The TF Approval (TFA) is the e-CMR compliant signature of TransFollow. It meets the eIDAS requirements for the advanced signature. The TF Approval checks whether you are signing the right consignment note with the right counterparty. To use the TF Approval you simply exchange the QR-code with the counterparty.
02. What is the proof of transfer code?
The proof of transfer code is generated during the signing process when sign-on-glass by the consignor is used. It is a four digit code that forms a unique combination with the consignment note number. The combination of the proof of transfer code and the consignment note number prove that the consignor and the carrier have met.
03. What are credits and who needs them?
Credits are required to digitally submit consignment notes on the TransFollow platform. With one credit you can submit one consignment note. Credits are only used by the party submitting the consignment note. Credits can be obtained via your distributor only.
04. What is a TransFollow distributor?
A distributor is contracted by TransFollow to sell TransFollow products; credits and services.
05. What is a TransFollow licensee?
A licensee is a company offering a TransFollow integrated software solution to its end-user.
06. What's the Returnable Transport items (RTI) feature?
This feature enables you to create and exchange digital consignment notes for goods and Returnable Transport Items data and facilitate the structured registration of these goods and RTI’s. Supply chain parties can automate their administration by using the goods and RTI’s, like pallets and Danish cars, available in the digital consignment note. This ledger can be integrated via the API and maintained via the TransFollow App.
07. What is the multiple signing module?
This is a practical solution that lets you or your driver select a number (maximum 20) of digital consignment notes quickly and easily in the app. The driver can then sign the entire selection of consignment notes with the shipper in one single action. You can do this by touching the screen for two seconds, then there will appear selection options in front of the consignment notes. Select the ones you would like to sign in one workflow. Click on the sign button.
06. Digital consignment notes - Signing the e-CMR
01. How can I sign a digital consignment note using TransFollow?
TransFollow offers three different signing methods:
• TransFollow Approval (TFA)
The TF Approval is an advanced algorithm for exchanging an electronic signature that ensures both parties have access to the same consignment note. The signature contains a unique value of the exact content of the consignment note which is exchanged by means of a QR code. Both parties have to prove their collaboration, which is why the QR code is presented first by the carrier and then by the other party. A TransFollow account is mandatory for both parties.
If a counterparty does not have a TransFollow account, they can sign for transfer by signing on glass on the device of the driver. Additionally, they can enter their email address to receive a PDF copy of the freight document they just signed. The GPS location of the moment of signing can serve as supporting information. Allowing Sign-on-Glass as signing method can be determined by the submitter upon creation of the consignment note.
• Without Approval of the Counterparty
The most simple and unilateral way of signing is by letting the driver approve of a transfer of the goods on his own. Allowing signing without approval of the counterparty as signing method can be determined by the submitter upon creation of the consignment note.
02. Can I sign multiple consignment notes at once?
Yes, you can. The driver can sign the entire selection of consignment notes with the shipper in one single action. You can do this by touching the screen for two seconds, then there will appear selection options in front of the consignment notes. Select the ones you would like to sign in one workflow. Click on the sign button.
03. Can I first check the freight before I sign the consignment note upon final delivery?
Yes, you can, with ‘ transfer to consignee for further inspection’. With this option, the consignee can postpone the signing. He can first check the freight and sign afterwards.
04. Can I add a comment when I sign for receipt?
Yes, when sign on glass is being used it is possible to add a comment on the drivers’ device before you sign for receipt. If desired, the drivers’ device can also be used to take a picture of the location or damage (if applicable).
05. Is an internet connection necessary to exchange signatures via TransFollow?
No, once the e-CMR data is available on your mobile device, you can also sign for receipt while you are offline. The correctness of the signatures is always checked. Note: status of the shipment is not updated whilst being offline.
06. Can I see the consignment note in PDF-format?
Yes, you can. In the portal and the app you can view a pdf. The consignment note can be displayed in PDF format by selecting the “View PDF" option in the e-CMR detail screen. This is mainly for the purpose of showing the consignment note to the controlling authority.
07. How does the driver or warehouse manager know which consignment note has to be selected for signature?
The driver can check the carrier device and look for the right number.
08. With various staff members at the consignor/consignee warehouse, can you tell which person received the load?
Every assigned employee can sign for the consignment note with the TransFollow app, TransFollow will notify the driver in the app that it is not the intended sender/consignee but can still finish the signing process. The signature will show who actually signed the consignment note.
07. Digital consignment notes - Submitting the e-CMR
01. How do I submit a consignment note?
This can only be done via your integrated system or via the TransFollow app.
02. Can I also submit consignment notes on the TransFollow Portal?
No, the TransFollow portal does not support this.
03. What account do I use to submit consignment notes on TransFollow?
You should use the account that you have used to purchase your credits to submit consignment notes.
04. Is it possible to hide information when submitting consignment notes (blank consignment notes)?
TransFollow does not give you the option to hide information. All information that is passed from a company’s system to TransFollow is visible to all parties involved in the shipment, except for sealed attachments, which are only visible to the consignor and the consignee.
05. Where can I find the e-mail addresses of the other parties in the chain?
When you start using TransFollow, we recommend that you notify your chain partners. Ask your partners what e-mail address they want to use as part of the process.
06. Will I receive an error message if I use an incorrect e-mailadress?
TransFollow only checks whether the e-mail format (email@example.com) is correct. The submitter is responsible for the accuracy of the information.
07. Can I add attachments to the consignment note as attachments?
Yes, you can include items such as photographs, packing lists and instructions as attachments (in JPG, PDF and PNG format) up to a maximum of 10 MB for each uploaded e-CMR.
08. Are these attachments visible to anyone?
When submitting the consignment note, you have the option to make the attachments visible to all parties or just to the consignor and consignee (sealed attachment).
08. Digital consignment notes - Archiving the e-CMR
01. Can I archive consignment notes?
Consignment notes are automatically stored on the TransFollow platform. TransFollow allows you to store signed consignment notes for seven years. By default, a consignment note is stored on TransFollow for twelve months free of charge.
02. Can I store consignment notes locally?
Consignment notes are only available in PDF format. Via the TransFollow Portal and the API, you can download a consignment note as PDF file and then save it locally.
09. Digital consignment notes - various
01. Our country uses national consignment notes only. Can I still use TransFollow?
Yes, you can. We’ve created the Carta de Porte for the Spanish market and the Lettre de Voiture for the French market. Country specific domestic consignment notes can be added upon request.
02. How is the numbering of the consignment notes defined?
We use country based identifiable numbering, two character country prefix according to the ISO 3166 norm.
03. Who has access to the consignment notes?
All consignment notes that are passed from a company’s system to TransFollow are visible to all parties involved in the shipment
01. In which languages is TransFollow available?
The TransFollow platform and app are available in more than 10 languages (English, Dutch, German, Danish, Finnish, French, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish, Czech, Greek) and is continuously updated depending on ratification of the e-CMR protocol in additional countries.
02. How do I set the language in the portal?
In the portal you can easily change your language via the menu at the top right.
03. How do I set the language in the app?
The TransFollow Android app is automatically launched in the language set by the user as the preferred language of the device. On the consignment note level the user can swap the language for the understanding of the counterparty. When returning to the consignment note overview, the preferred language will be automatically be reactivated.
01. How can I order credits?
Via the distributor or your software partner only.
02. How much does a credit cost?
For more information about the costs, please contact your local distributor.
03. Can I view my current balance?
To check your current balance, sign into your account. Your available credits are displayed in the upper left corner of the TransFollow portal.
04. Can I spend credits immediately?
Yes, you can use your credits to submit consignment notes as soon as your credit balance is positive. While you are waiting for approval, you can create draft consignment notes if your enabler supports this function.
05. When do credits expire?
Credits are valid indefinitely until further notice.
06. Can I get a refund for unused credits?
No, unused credits are not redeemable. If you stop making use of TransFollow, your credits will be voided.
07. Do I pay for credits in advance or afterwards?
You need to pay for your credits before you can start creating consignment notes.
12. Technical Support
01. I need support, who do I contact?
If you are an end-user of TransFollow, you can contact you (local) distributor. If you are a software provider you can contact us by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org of call us on +31 885525540 or +31 623909477.
02. Where can I find the release notes?
The release notes can be found on the website and in our 3-weekly newsletter or on our Release Note page. You can read them by clicking here.
03. I want to connect to the TransFollow platform. Where can I view the technical specifications?
You can read our integration walkthrough of you can read the TransFollow specifications which can be found on developer.transfollow.com.
04. I would like to submit feedback. How do I do this?
TransFollow appreciates your feedback on how we can improve our services. Please e-mail your suggestions to info@TransFollow.org.
05. Why won’t TransFollow accept my phone in registration?
TransFollow supports all Android devices with Android 4.3 and up for carriers, senders and consignees. Senders and consignees can also use our iPhone app (for signing only).