Hopkins Distribution Glossary

Basic Terminology:

3PL- A 3PL or third-party logistics provider is a supplier of outsourced logistics services that primarily uses its own assets and resources to provide product transportation and order fulfillment for other businesses.

Contract Warehouse – A warehouse owned by a third party entity that receives, handles, distributes and stores products on a contract basis.

Distribution Center (DC) – is a warehouse or other specialized building which is stocked with products or goods to be redistributed to retailers, to wholesalers or directly to consumers.

Distribution of Perishable Goods – 3pl company storage and transportation precautions considered such as temperature, humidity and travel duration while distributing perishable products.

Distribution of Temperature Sensitive Items – The process of storing and distributing products safely in a temperature controlled warehouse.

Facility – a warehouse location is often referred to as a facility.

First In, First Out (FIFO) – An inventory allocation process, where material is processed on a first come first serve basis.

Inventory ManagementInventory management is the process of efficiently overseeing the product into and out of an existing inventory.

Logistics – The process of implementing the flow and storage of product through warehousing, transport, added-value services and IT solutions.

Order fulfillment – Order fulfillment is the process of receiving an order, then shipping the order to the buyer to complete a transaction.

Outbound logistics Outbound logistics is the process related to the storage and movement of the final product from the end of the production line to the end user.

Public Warehouse – Public warehouses are owned and operated by a third party entity that receives, handles, distributes and stores products.

Reverse Logistics – The activity of planning the returns to the warehouse facility.

Third Party Logistics – A third-party logistics or 3PL provider is a supplier of outsourced logistics services that primarily uses its own assets and resources to provide product transportation and order fulfillment for businesses.

Third Party Warehouse – Warehouse operated by a 3PL service provider.

Warehouse – A product or goods storage facility.


Advance 3PL terminology:

Advance Shipment Notification (ASN) – Advanced shipment notifications are used to notify a customer of a shipment, usually combined with bar code compliance labeling which allows the customer to receive the shipment into inventory through the use of automated data collection systems.

ASN Processing – Message that informs a consignee of the actual dispatch of a shipment and indicates its expected arrival date and other particulars.

Bar Codes – Dark bars printed side-by-side on merchandise and other items to represent a number or code that can be read by machines called bar code readers to pass information which matches the code with the stored information such as the item’s name, price, size and quantity in stock.

Bill of Ladings – A document issued by a carrier to the shipper as a contract of carriage of goods. It is also a receipt for cargo accepted for transportation and must be presented for taking delivery at the destination.

Bundles – Two or more articles or packages fastened or wrapped together to be shipped or sold as one unit usually featuring a special pricing arrangement which makes it cheaper to buy the products and services as a bundle than separately.

Carrier Matrix – Carriers assigned via Small Package or LTL freight based upon a weight break and then assigned via a state assignment.

Collect Address to Use – Small Package carriers need to use a specific “bill to” address.  There are 5 different addresses in Hopkins Distribution Companies WMS and selecting the correct “bill to” address passes the correct information to the UPS or FedEx servers for the proper billing of collect shipments.

Consignee – The buying party named by the seller in transportation documents as the party to whose order will be delivered at the port of destination for the purpose of filing the customs declaration and for paying duties and taxes.

Country of Origin – Country where goods shipped were originally produced.

CSR (Client Support Representative) – 3PL staff that processes all forms of orders, i.e.: EDI, FTP, Email and keying of orders.  CSR’s process all inbound warehouse freight into the Hopkins WMS systems.

Cube Calculation – in warehousing and logistics, cube utilization refers to the use of space within storage area, trailer, or container. Cube utilization is generally calculated as a percentage of total space or of total “usable” space.

Customs Invoice – Invoice required by customs in which the exporter states the description, quantity and selling price, freight, insurance, and packing costs, terms of delivery and payment, weight and/or volume of the goods for the purpose of determining customs import value at the port of destination.

Display Ready – Display ready pallets are built for “big box” stores like Costco.  The pallets are built in such a way that the freight is received by the store and is very easily put on the store’s floor for immediate sale.

EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) – The transfer of data between different companies using networks, such as VANs or the Internet as an easy mechanism for to buy, sell and trade information.

EDI 850 – The 850 transaction set provides the EDI format for transmitting information relating to payments. It is typically used in conjunction with an electronic transfer of funds for payment of goods, insurance premiums or other transactions.

EDI 856 – Data contents of the Advance Ship Notice or ASN. It is utilized to electronically communicate the contents of a shipment to another trading partner. It is sent in advance of a shipment arriving at the other trading partner’s facility.

EDI 940 – Data contents of the Warehouse Shipping Order Transaction Set (940) for use within the context of an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) environment. This transaction set can be used to enable the depositor to advise a warehouse to make a shipment, confirm a shipment, or modify or cancel a previously transmitted shipping order.

EDI 945 – Data contents of the Warehouse Shipping Advice Transaction Set (945) for use within the context of an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) environment. The transaction set can be used by the warehouse to advise the depositor that shipment was made. It is used to reconcile order quantities with shipment quantities.

Freight Bill – a bill rendered by a carrier to a consignee of freight and containing an identifying description of the freight, the name of the shipper, the point of origin of the shipment, its weight and the amount of charges

Freight Class – Freight rate for goods grouped or classified according to similar shipping characteristics.

Freight Rates – Price charged by transportation carrier for moving goods from point A to point B based on weight of object being moved, type of object being moved and distance traveled.

FTL (full container load) – A standard container that is loaded and unloaded under the risk and account of the shipper or consignee that attracts lower freight rates than an equivalent weight of loose (break bulk) cargo.

Fulfillment – Process of taking an order and executing it by making it ready for delivery to its intended customer

Harmonized Code – Six-digit coding for identification and classification of imported and exported goods for the purpose of compiling trade statistics and determining customs tariff.

LTL (less than truck load) – Cargo weight between partial and full truckload.  LTL usually implies an order that is from one to eight pallets of freight.

Linear Foot Rule – Term used by LTL carriers that allows them to decide if the freight in a “pup” exceeds eight pallets of freight.  Nine pallets or greater, on the floor of a pup constitutes a full-truck load.  LTL carriers will charge a premium for freight that exceeds the Linear Foot Rule.

Master Bill of Lading Number – A schedule of costs for services rendered issued by a ship’s master or another carrier official and which documents that certain products were received on board as cargo for shipment to a particular place and to be delivered to the stated receiver. The term can also describe a VIC’s Bill of Lading that has more than one order on the same Bill of Lading.

Miscellaneous Billing – All billables that are not part of standard in and out processing for a 3PL will be added to a Miscellaneous Billing invoice on the first day of every month.  This can include for example: garbage, recycling of materials, propane, work orders, etc.

NMFC (National Motor Freight Classification) –
a publication for motor carriers containing rules, descriptions and ratings on all commodities moving in commerce.

OSD (Over, Short and Damaged) – Report lodged by a recipient of a shipment, together with a claim, to the carrier of the shipment detailing what items listed in the shipping documents have been received over-shipped, short-shipped, or in an unsatisfactory or damaged condition.

Pro Number – a number in a single continuous series of numbers assigned by the carrier to reference and track your shipment.

RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) – Automatic identification of packages, products, machinery, etc., through attached transponders. RFID provides ‘out of line of sight’ identification, and at distances much greater than that can be scanned by barcode readers.

RMA (Return Merchandise Authorization) – The process of returning a product in order to receive a refund, replacement or repair during the product’s warranty period.

Blind Shipping – A freight shipment in which the shipper and receiver are not aware of one another

Small Package – DHL, FedEx, Post Office and UPS are considered Small Package Carriers. The freight processed usually has orders that weight less than 300 lbs.

Small Package Collect Account Number – Small Package orders can be processed using a consignee’s collect account number. This account number “must” be used in conjunction with the correct billing address of the entity that holds the account number.

Third Party Shipment- A shipment in which the person who arranges the shipment is neither the originating nor the receiving destination. The third party makes the arrangements for the shipper and receiver.

Ultimate Destination Address – An example of an Ultimate Destination Address would be when freight is being shipped to a freight forwarder at the border of a country and then the freight forwarder will send the freight to the Ultimate Destination address inside of the other country.

UPC Code (Universal Product Code) – Twelve-digit barcode printed or affixed on items sold in supermarkets or retail stores that identifies an item,  provides real time information on quantity sold, store traffic pattern and inventory and ordering information.

ORMD – A consumer commodity which presents a limited hazard during transportation due to its form, quantity and packaging.

OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) – US federal agency created in 1970 under the US Department Of Labor to establish and enforce standards and laws for working conditions in commercial and industrial sectors. Its recommendations and guidelines (such as those for material safety data sheet) are followed in several other countries as well.

FDA (food & drug administration) – US regulatory agency responsible for the safety of foods and cosmetics, and safety and efficacy of medicinal drugs and devices. FDA reviews new drug applications, implements standards, and regulates the sale of restricted drugs.

Value Added Services – The enhancement added to a product or service by a company before the product is offered to customers.

KPI (Key Performance Indicators) – A set of measures that help a company determine if it is reaching its performance and operational goals.

Lot Control/Serial Numbers – Scanning Lot and serial numbers is accomplished on the on the shipping prior to shipments leaving the building.  The scan can

E-Commerce Fulfillment – The process of receiving, packaging and shipping orders for goods made online.

Retail Fulfillment – The process of receiving, packaging and shipping orders for goods

Cross Dock Freight – moving cargo from one transport vehicle directly into another, with minimal or no warehousing

MSDS (material safety data sheet) – Formal document containing important information about the characteristics and actual or potential hazards of a substance mandated by the OSHA.

POD (Proof of Delivery) – Receipt signed by a consignee or recipient, confirming delivery of a shipment in good order and condition.

RTS (Return to Stock) – The process of returning a product in order to receive a refund, replacement or repair during the product’s warranty period.