Amtrak Express Parcels has introduced a web service based on a hosted Java application server running on Linux, to allow businesses to automate the process of dispatching sales orders.
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The service, Amtrak Connector, is accessed via a web browser and can be used for orders taken at any location and for shipping from any location.
Consignment data from a customer's sales order system is captured by the web service and fed directly into Amtrak's central parcel tracking server. Another web service produces printed barcode consignment labels.
Joe Dudley, business service manager at Amtrak, said the new service cuts down on manual processing and matches orders automatically, so reducing errors. "Our depot network has access to the web service and can see what customers are doing. It also enables us to plan our capacity for evening sorting," he said.
Amtrak Connector runs as a hosted service, provided by NetDespatch, a company specialising in offering web services for express delivery companies. The web service is built in Java and runs on Red Hat Enterprise Linux using HP Intel-based servers.