Expedited Passports & Visas Case Study

Published on September 12, 2016
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Fact Sheet

The Background

It's every traveler's nightmare. They're preparing for their trip overseas, they've got their tickets, they've got their bags packed, but they check their passport and it's expired.

Enter Expedited Passports & Visas, a nationwide passport and visa expediting firm. Within 24 hours of receiving documents, Expedited Passports & Visas can deliver a brand new passport or travel visa to your doorstep. They have a nationwide network of couriers and hubs that allow extremely quick turnarounds, no matter how desperate the timeline is.

The Logistics

Selling visa and passport services is a bit more complicated than selling shirts. Expedited Passports & Visas has to take customer applications directly to the passport or consulate offices (depending on the service), pick up the newly minted passports or visas whenever they're ready, and finally ship them off to couriers for delivery.

That's a lot of moving parts to keep track of. Now multiply that complexity by the hundreds of orders Expedited Passports & Visas receives each week. It’s a tall ask for any small company to solve.

The Problem

Expedited Passports and Visas Team

Before EasyPost, creating shipping labels was a multi-step process with a lot of manual touchpoints. First, they'd create a FedEx account profile to create the shipment, which required copy and pasting each individual sender address for inbound shipment and the customer's address for outbound shipments. Then, after receiving the shipping label, they would copy/paste the tracking number into WooCommerce in order to provide tracking information for the order.

Another problem with manual processes is the room for error. Erroneous labels were purchased and printed all the time, which is costlier for a company that relies on pricier expedited shipping.

On top of that, there was no automated tracking to help delegate the couriers’ backlogs. This caused customer service issues that pushed orders to couriers who didn't have the bandwidth to complete them. For a company that relies on expedited service, having an order stuck in limbo is a body blow to their brand.

Finally, having no automated tracking made manifest reporting a manual task. With nothing but differing carrier emails and reports to go by, it becomes a difficult game of manual number-matching to get nightly manifests reconciled and into the system.

The Solution

EasyPost's API turned a 10-step shipping label process into a one-click process. It was a simple proposition to connect the EasyPost API to Expedited Passports & Visas' WooCommerce set up. From there, address information gets directly sent to the carrier via EasyPost, which then returns a label. Also, by virtue of automating the process, there were less erroneous labels printed, giving them substantial savings on wasted label costs.

It wasn’t all just about efficiency, EasyPost also provided another layer of fraud protection. With the Shipping Label API, Expedited Passports & Visas built better controls on shipping upgrades at the point of sale, as well as the capability to force signatures on questionable outbound shipments.

Expedited Passports & Visas also made great use of our Tracking API. With Easypost, Expedited Passports & Visas could get real-time assessment on a courier's workload. Having that kind of visibility makes it's much easier to manage couriers and prevent unfulfillable orders. By improving capacity management, Expedited Passports & Visas can also reduce customer issues and protect its brand of expedited service.

Finally, the Tracking API removed inefficiencies from their nightly manifest reporting, which was crucial in tracking the health of the overall business. By funneling all the tracking information into one hub - instead of reconciling multiple reports and carrier emails – nightly manifest reports were shortened from a two-hour endeavor to a 30-minute task.

"As nationwide couriers working with multiple offices, we need easy to use and easy to implement tools for working with and managing small parcel shipments. Working with EasyPost has allowed us to have a competitive advantage because we have a best of breed solution that can be interchanged with shipping partners with minimal or no coding resources."

Scott Averbach, CEO/Owner, Expedited Passports and Visas

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