CONCOR ropes in TCS to strengthen its ‘Mobile App’ for Reverse Auctions

NEW DELHI: In a bid to improve the quality of services offered by vendors for containerized movement of cargo at the first and last mile, state-run Container Corporation of India (CONCOR) has roped in Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) to strengthen its mobile app to facilitate continuous reverse auction for the first time among vendors. An in-house team of CONCOR is working with TCS on the project. At present, a vendor is selected for a particular area through an open tender process to transport containers from the site of a customer to CONCOR’s loading terminal and similarly another selected vendor transports containers to the delivery location of the receiver after being unloaded at the railway arm’s terminating facility.

However, according to VKalyana Rama, chairman and managing director of CONCOR, while the company is able to do container transportation business and fixed location services at inland transport depots well, there are issues in the end-to-end services. “Since we are a PSU, we need to outsource activity based on open tenders. So one outsource activity requires one vendor. At present we are dependent on the selected vendors for the quality of the service,” he said, adding that the company is now changing the method.

CONCOR already has an app which provides continuous transportation visibility of booked containers to customers. This mobile app is now being upgraded into a complete logistics platform.“It will be like any other platform such as Amazon or Uber. So when a customer will put in a requirement, empaneled vendors will get an intimation and will be allowed to put in quotes and there will be a continuous reverse auction process going on at the backend to offer the first and last mile services,” said Rama. He added that the quality of service will be continuously monitored.

The lowest bidder among the empaneled vendors will then be awarded the service and the customer will be informed about the logistics provider. According to Rama, once multiple vendors are empaneled through tendering, there will be more competition.
“The customer will get complete logistics solution from door-to-door. However, in the backend every activity will be matched to a vendor who will provide quality service at competitive price. We will monitor the quality service of the vendors constantly,” he added.

CONCOR is aiming to strengthen the app platform as the number of order is high. Last year, it processed 3.5 million twenty feet equivalent unit (TEU) of boxes. Considering that every container goes through at least two activities at each end of the journey by third-party vendors, 7 million outsourcing activity was needed. “So to execute 7 million reverse auctions, a robust platform is needed,” said Rama.

Mobile Applications for Stakeholders

CONCOR has implemented following mobile applications for external stakeholders (public) and brief description of each app is as follows :

“Connect CONCOR”CONCOR has designed and developed a Mobile Application as a customer friendly initiative for ease of doing business. This application is available on both iOS & Android platforms and can be downloaded on App Store / Play Store. The functionalities available on the app as on date are :

  •  Track & trace of containers for both EXIM & domestic.
  •  Tariff for both international & domestic streams.
  •  Company directory which gives complete list of officers with their designation, e-mail & contract numbers.
  •  Corporate profile and latest news on the company.
  •  Complete terminal information including Tariff for all activities.

“e-Logistic” Mobile App.: CONCOR is developing an Integrated Mobile Application for its Customers and Service Providers for disseminating information about their cargo and allowing them online transactions through Mobile Application. This customer friendly mobile application will be released in phased manner and will be available on both iOS & Android Platform.

In the common single digital platform of mobile application, the requirement of customer and the service of the service provider shall come together which help for better ‘Customer Value Creation’. Panel of service providers for each activity such as transportation, cargo handling shall be provided on this digital platform who shall compete with each other for providing the services to customer. By using this mobile application customers can make transactions for Export and Import related activities without visiting CONCOR’s terminal and they will have “Continuous Cargo Visibility” by knowing the location of their container which will save their precious time and cost.

The first version for this mobile application which include the information about Customer’s billing related information, container information, booking, Inland Way Bill (IWB) information, Customer’s Pre-deposit Accounts (PDA) information and many other information has already been released and can be downloaded from App Store / Google Play Store / CONCOR Website.

Information Systems

IT forms the backbone of any service industry, where information correlates directly with improved levels of efficiency. In the transport sector, antiquated, cumbersome paper-based procedures cause an enormous waste of time and money. All too often, goods move through transport systems at a frustratingly slow speed, especially in developing countries. The physical side of trade transactions should aspire to become as efficient as the electronic transfer of money. This can be done through working partnerships among all those involved to improve logistics services through the use of information and network technology.

A primary component of CONCOR’s overall business strategy has been the development of an advanced information system. CONCOR had made a container and cargo logistics information system online at Inland Container Depot at Tughlakabad in 1994 and since than most other facilities have been equipped with computer systems to monitor traffic movement for contineous cargo visibility.

CONCOR is using various online applications like Export/Import Terminal Management System (ETMS), Domestic Terminal Management System (DTMS), Oracle Financials-ERP, HR-Payroll system etc. which are based on Centralized architecture deployed through Citrix environment and running over VSAT based hybrid network.CONCOR has been certified to ISO/IEC 27001: 2013 standard for establishing and maintaining Information Security Management System (ISMS) for its IT functionality.CONCOR has been awarded for its project titled “Web based Integrated Container/Terminal Management System” which has been adjudged by AFACT (Asia Pacific Council for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business) as winner for e ASIA 2009 awardfor the category “Electronic Business in Public Sector”.

Facility for electronic filing (e-filing) of commercial documents for EXIM locations have been provided to customers. This facility enables customers like Shipping lines, Importers, Exporters and CHA’s to file the required documents online for process and take necessary printouts of processed output through web from anywhere without physically coming to terminal/ ICD. Digital Signatures have been integrated with e-filing to make the system more secure.

To view the e-filing details

RDT’s are being used in CONCOR for online container tracking and entry of unloading / loading of containers on to wagons. Interface software was developed for automatic updation of entries through RDT’s into CCLS and ETMS database for EXIM operations. RDT’s are also interfaced with our Domestic Terminal Management System (DTMS) at DCT/Okhla, TNPM/Chennai and WFD/Bangalore. This has enabled any user to query the system either through LAN or Web to get the latest status and location of a container in the yard.

CONCOR has its own WebServer for providing web interface to the commercial applications i.e. ETMS, CCLS, DTMS etc. The web interface enables our customers to access information regarding their shipments by means of the website.

An integrated track and trace system was also implemented on CONCOR website for providing Container Tracking Details and apart from website, Mobile Applications has also been developed for “Contineous Cargo Visibility” of customers alongwith many other functionality.

CONCOR has also introduced automated e-mails for PDA statement, Rail out and SMS for Rail out cases for EXIM system. For availing such facility the intending customers may contact ED (MIS & CSR) at email id

CONCOR has developed web based e-filing software to provide one platform for import/export trade to perform online all their commercial transactions with EXIM locations from anywhere.

E-Filing Software

E-Filing software is a web based application for EXIM locations being operational at Terminal/Inland Container Depot of CONCOR.The objective of this software is to provide one platform for entire import/export trade to perform online all their commercial transactions with EXIM locations from anywhere. This will in turn provide the trade savings in terms of time, energy and at the same time faster clearance of containers.Through this software, any importer/exporter/shipping agent can file his documents including billing and take necessary print out’s. Various Queries and Reports are also part of this web based software to keep track of containers at every stage and also to find out due amount to be paid to CONCOR.All registered users of this software should have digital certificate and electronic token for security and authenticity of documents filed.

Detailed registration process and user guide on functionalities of the software can be accessed through the following links.