When you are just getting started, Tailwind can feel like a very complicated application, and it can be hard to figure out exactly where to start. This article aims to help you on your way with a few crucial first steps.
Settings & Configuration
When you log into the program, you will see an icon shaped like a gear at the top right of the page, next to your user name. Clicking on the gear will bring up a menu containing your Settings & Configuration options. These options are crucial to getting Tailwind up and running in a way that makes sense for your business.
Settings contains some basic options that are specific to your user account,most of which you don’t have to worry about for now. Most importantly, this is where you can change your password if you need to in the future.
For now, start by clicking on ‘Configuration’.
Let’s move on to the ‘Configuration’ options, which are also available via the menu at the top right of the page.
While Settings controls options that are specific to your user account, the Configuration options are company-wide settings. This is where you will enter your specific company information and make it your own – it is also where you can select options to ensure that Tailwind does things in a way that fits as closely as possible with how your business operates.
We have set this database with what we feel are very common settings in the transportation industry and we recommend that you learn the behaviour of the software before making many changes here. As with Settings, these options can always be visited later to make any changes you want.
Set Up Company Information
The first thing you will want to do is set up the details of your company under the menu item “Company Information.”
Click on the menu header to expand the Company Information options – you will see two subheadings, ‘General Information’ and ‘Reminders.’
General Information is where you will enter the details of your business. Click on it now to bring up the related Configuration page.
The ‘Trip Prefix’ field allows you to set a prefix to the trip or dispatch number that will be used once you are actually dispatching shipments. You can call it “Trip” or “Load” or “Dispatch” or even leave it blank and just use the number without a prefix.
Branch Details — General
You will also see your branch details listed below the Trip Prefix area. Here you can click on the yellow edit icon to edit the details of your existing branch record, or use the “Add” button to add branches if you want to set up multiple branches.
Click on the edit button now to review your default Branch details.
Once you are in edit mode, you will see two tabs at the top of the form: “General” and “Insurance”.
On the General tab, enter your company name, address and phone details and also complete any of the other fields that pertain to your business. You can also upload a logo that will print on many of the forms like invoices and load confirmations. Once you have updated this information, click ‘Save’.
This will close the Branch record for now, but don’t worry – we’ll be back.
Branch Details – Create an Insurance Vendor
Before you can set up the Insurance for your Branch, you will need to create a Vendor record to represent your insurance provider, so that you can enter the details of your Certificate of Insurance on the Insurance tab.
Navigate to the Vendor module by selecting Vendors on the left vertical menu.
A ‘Vendor’ is any company that provide services to your business, and can range from Insurance providers to Equipment maintenance providers to Carriers that you will hire to move loads for you. For now, you only need to enter one vendor record – for your Insurance Provider.
Click the ‘Create’ button to create a new Vendor record that you can populate with details of your insurance company. Don’t forget to use the tabs at the top of the record to move between the ‘General’, ‘Address’ and ‘Type’ sections.
Fill out the details under each tab — General, Address, and Type. The Vendor Type allows you to specify what type of vendor this is to your company – in this case, select ‘Vendor – Insurance.’
Once you have filled out the information for your Vendor, click ‘Save’ to save the record.
Branch Details – Insurance Information
Now that you have created a vendor record for your insurance provider, you can return to your Branch details and enter the insurance information you were missing.
Click on the gear icon again and navigate through ‘Configuration’ to ‘Company Information’ and back in to where your Branch details are listed under the General Information section.
Click on the yellow edit button next to the Branch to open up the record, then navigate to the ‘Insurance’ tab. You can now select the Vendor record you just created as the ‘Company’ that is providing your insurance. Do so, then set your policy numbers, dates and amounts for both Cargo and Liability. Remember to “Save” the record once you are done.
Setting Your E-mail Address
The last thing to do is set up the e-mail address that Tailwind will use to send out e-mails — such as Quotes and Invoices — on your behalf. The e-mail for a specific user is set on their Personnel record, so start by navigating to the ‘Personnel’ list using the left navigation menu.
You should now see a list of all the Personnel records for your company. Locate your own record on the list and click on the blue ‘O’ button to open it up. (Note that depending on your security settings, you may only be able to see your own record; don’t worry, the others are in there too.)
You should now see your Personnel record. To make any changes, you will have to click the ‘Edit Record’ button first. Do so, then navigate to the ‘Business’ tab, where you can set your Business E-mail. Enter the e-mail you want to use, then click ‘Save’.
All Done For Now
Congratulations! You have successfully created your branch information, set up your email address, and taken your first steps towards making Tailwind work for you.
Next Steps & Related Articles
Now that you have set up your company information in Tailwind, you will probably want to start creating Personnel records, adding Customers, and creating more Vendor records. There are also Location records and Equipment records that can be added.
Once that is done, you may want to check out our Operations Overview to learn more about putting all those records to work – sending out Quotes to customers, creating Orders, and Dispatching those Orders to finally get some cargo moving in the system.
As you explore Tailwind, you may find yourself wanting to find out more about the other Configuration and Settings options.