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- Rick Tellez
For an industry that has struggled to shed the notion that documents are still sent by fax, the long-rumored progression from paper documents to electronic versions has been painfully slow. At a time when multimillion-dollar homes can be bought and sold via DocuSign, it's hard to imagine that basic shipping and customs documents still change hands in paper format. For many, a move to email attachments — digital versions of paper documents — is an aspirational state. The pandemic, and the remote work it forced upon the global logistics industry, has not yet been the catalyst for major change. That’s not to say progress isn’t underway. An array of technology providers, incumbent, and startup alike, is guiding the industry toward digitization. And there is progress in areas such as electronic bills of lading, where Mediterranean Shipping Co., Zim, and ONE have all invested. But what will be the catalyst to push the industry at large toward more adoption of electronic documentation?