The purpose of the Branch/Department Management module of AscendTMS is to allow companies to carve out users into separate divisions which we call Branches/Departments. For example, you may be the owner of a company and would like to add a user that will be responsible for their own profit and loss. If so, you may want to put them in their own Branch/Department. Or, you may be a Regional Manager that is responsible for all the freight management within your region for the company you work for. In this case, you may want to put all of your team members into a Branch/Department. In either example, you can divide out a user or group of users that can only see the Loads, Customers, Carriers or Locations that they are responsible for. In addition, you can share Loads, Customers, Carriers or Locations with every user in the system if you desire.
This image displays two users working for the same company without any Branches or Departments. The group they belong to is called Shared. Shared is the default group that all users are assigned to when they are added to your AscendTMS. The Shared group cannot be deleted, but it can be renamed. Also, users cannot be removed from the Shared group. In addition, all Loads, Customers, Carriers or Locations that are created in the Shared group can be viewed by every user in your company.
In this illustration, you see a company that has created its first Branch/Department called Headquarters. You will notice that Jack is the only member of Headquarters while Sally is still a member of the Shared group. Although Jack is a member of Headquarters he still remains a member of the Shared group. This means that Jack can view, create and edit Loads, Customers, Carriers and Locations in either the Headquarters Branch or the Shared group. Meanwhile Sally can only view, create and edit Loads, Customers, Carriers and Locations that are in the Shared group. She cannot view any information that pertains to the Headquarters branch.
Here the same company has added a second branch and named it Branch 1 with Sally and Jack as members. Sally can now view, create and edit Loads, Customers, Carriers and Locations in Branch 1 as well as the Shared group. Because Jack is a member of Headquarters, Branch 1 and Shared he has the ability to perform all functions in any of those Branches/Departments. This means that Jack can switch views of his Load Management screens, view Load Financials amongst other tasks for all three as well.
You will now notice that the company has added another branch called Branch 2 and a new user named Ned. Ned is a member of Shared by default and Jack also added him to Headquarters and Branch 2. Ned now has access to Loads, Customers, Carriers and Locations for both Headquarters and Branch 2, as well as the Shared group. Jack is a member of all three branches and the Shared group. This allows Jack to view and access all the information within his company. Sally is still a member of Branch 1 but not a member of Branch 2 so she cannot view or access any information in Branch 2. However, all 3 users can view and access all the information in the Shared group.
Here is an example on how to use the Shared group across a company. As illustrated before, Jack is a member of Headquarters, Branch 1 and the Shared group. Sally is a member of just Branch 1 and the Shared group. Both Headquarters and Branch 1 have their own Loads, Customers and Carriers but only the Shared group has Locations. This means that all of the Locations that Jack and Sally can view, create, edit or add to loads are shared between them. If anything resides in the Shared group, it is viewable to all users. Of course, you can have any combination of Shared Loads, Customers, Carriers or Locations that your company requires.
In this example, the company has decided to share all of its customers will all 3 branches. Similar to the previous example, none of the branches have their own customers. This doesn't mean that they cannot have their own, but for the sake of illustration this company's branches do not. Sally is a member of Branch 1. Ned is a member of Branch 2 and Headquarters. Jack is member of all 3. In addition, they are all members of the Shared group. This allows all users to have access to all the customers in the Shared group. If a user adds a customer to the system and they are member of a branch, they will be requested to choose whether to add them to their branch(es) or to the Shared group.
Scenario 1: Jack has a company that would like to have a user or department approve customers before assigning them to a Branch. All they have to do is choose to have customers be added to the Shared group when a user creates a new one under the Branch/Department Management settings. Now, when a user adds a new customer, that customer is visible to all users in their AscendTMS. Once a user with Administrator permissions approves the customer they can then move that customer to the proper branch. From that point forward the customer can only be viewed or edited by the users within that branch.
Scenario 2: Sally has a company that has several branches with one or more users per branch. Each branch is allowed to only see their loads, customers, carriers and locations. One branch, named Tulsa, just landed a large customer and needs some assistance managing their load volume. A user with Administrator permissions decides to add two users from another branch to the Tulsa branch. Now, those two users can view, edit and create loads for Tulsa to help with the work load. Once the load volume goes back to normal, the Administrator can remove the two users from the Tulsa branch.
Scenario 3: Ned has a company that utilizes lots and lots of carriers so they are always adding more and more every day. Ned's company has a Carrier Qualification department to assist with checking CSA scores, insurance verifications, fraud checks, etc. Ned has his company set up so that every time a carrier is added to AscendTMS, the Carrier Qualification department performs their due diligence. Once they have qualified a carrier, they then submit the carrier to Ned for his approval. Lastly, Ned releases the carrier to the Shared group for everyone to use once he has made the final approval.
If you would like more information to see if our Branch/Department module can help you with your scenario, please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.