What Is The Importance Of SCAC?

The SCAC is a unique, 2-4 character letter carriers and transportation companies. In the 1960s by the NMFTA (or National Motor Freight Traffic Association) to computerize transport.

The SCAC code allows the registration of your shipping documents (e.g., freight bills, bills of lading, purchase orders, packing lists) within a digital computer system for ease of access. It is vital to keep your computer systems optimized to use SCAC.

Once these records are digital, stakeholders can access important documents related to your company and operations. These digital records also allow you to track your shipment at every journey stage. SCAC has become mandatory nationwide because it efficiently monitors transportation companies across various transport modes, such as motor vehicles, railway lines, and waterways.


Who Needs A SCAC?

U.S. government agencies require carriers and transportation companies to apply for and renew their SCAC codes annually. Customs and border protection agencies also use this code to monitor carriers entering the country by accessing digitized carrier documentation.

Suppose you are a carrier crossing the U.S. border. In that case, you will need to ensure your SCAC code is updated so that proper government authorities can efficiently do governmental identification. An SCAC code is required by all the transportation companies that do business with the U.S. government and its agencies.


For example, if you or your company imports FMCG into the U.S., you must provide your SCAC code to the U.S. authorities and the FDA (or Food And Drug Administration) to get your product into the country. The FDA is responsible for tracking your fast-moving consumer goods and/or the container and inspecting the final product for contamination and health standards.

The CBP (or Customs Border Protection) uses the same code for clearing it from the customs authorities. This code is helpful for doing business with the U.S. government and its various agencies. The SCAC code applies across multiple industries, including automobile, forestry, railroad, petroleum, and ocean container.

What Are The Benefits Of SCAC & EDI Integration?

First, you might be asking what EDI stands for in the first place. We will get to the definition later in this section.

Right now, the logistics and transportation industry is facing many challenges. This sector is not an exemplary leader in maintaining efficiency and transparency. There is a severe lack of communication between parties involved in a single transaction. The supply chains need to be smoother and more efficient in this operation – this is where the SCAC code ‘shows its best assets.’ With the use of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) technology, the SCAC code of your carrier benefits your business by ensuring transparency and efficiency of all communications


Additional benefits include the following:

  • Data is streamlined with quicker response times across all divisions, departments, and facilitates speedier response times.
  • Information can be managed, stored, managed, and disseminated using automation.
  • Error-free information can be accessed quickly by stakeholders in real-time and without delays.
  • Efficient shipping and processing of orders, receipts, invoices, and payments due to integrated communication systems.
  • Trading capabilities.
  • Improved Partner relations with proper procedures in place.
  • Consistent Intermodal transportation due to a unified communication channel.

At DOT Compliance Group, we understand the importance of SCAC codes and their timely renewal for your company. If you intend to do any transactions or deals with the U.S. government and its agencies, you must keep this information up-to-date.

Contact us

Contact Us