Simplifying customs compliance for e-commerce

Customs Brokerage
Web App
SmartBorder’s core platform with a container ship

About this project

Livingston provides importers with a complete supply chain management solution. Their automated e-commerce customs brokerage solution allows importers to pre-clear high volumes of low-value parcels entering the U.S. In this way, at Kaizen we created “LEC” that stands for “Livingston E-commerce” which is a software that enables the Livingston e-commerce team to intake and process those high-volume customers shipments (via Section 321 and/or entry type 86)  for proper submission to U.S. customs.

A truck in a highway


In 2018, the U.S. Customs created the “Section 321” Law to stimulate business. This regulation  allows people to import goods up to 100 dollars per person/per day without having to pay any duties or taxes. As a result a new line of business for Livingston arose, so they created an exclusive e-commerce department, in addition to their main full-service import business. 

A container ship

To address this opportunity, Livingston created a flexible way for major importers to clear thousands of individual parcels quickly and accurately through automation. They needed an easy-to-use internal solution to classify, verify and scrub large amounts of customers shipments data for proper submission to the U.S. customs that any operator could manage with minimal training

Customer data was coming in various formats and the quality of the information was poor (some default party information was not properly entered), creating a challenge to properly process it. 


At Kaizen, we designed and developed an e-commerce clearance web-based technology that automates classification, validation, and formatting of bulk shipment releases with the latest Microsoft and Angular technologies. We were committed to simplify the complexities of trade and had the vision of enabling more shipments at less cost, in an easier and secure way. But to achieve that, we needed not only to process high volume shipments but to ensure the accuracy of the data so Livignston can deliver it to the customer at an attractive price point.

The customer should provide the e-commerce team valid data. The engine then checks it, makes sure it's valid, allows the team to make corrections if they need to, outputs correctly all the entries and makes sure it gets accepted by the U.S. customs, allowing one person to serve as a high-volume customer. 

SmartBorder’s core platform homepage

LEC classifies groups of information based on risk levels and confidence, identifying missing data elements and generating automated reports focused on error validations and priority of solving. The system also generates email and SMS notification alerts back to customers for automated update of shipments status.

This solution empowers Livingston, as a single trusted advisor that can handle all the compliance needs worldwide. Also, it gives Livingston a competitive advantage by opening up an e-commerce line of business for them.

The export module in SmartBorder’s core platform
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AWS logo
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NX logo
.Net Core logo


Kaizen focused on nailing the value proposition, target group, business goals and stand-out features of the new software. Our team was responsible for the planning, procurement and execution of the entire project, taking care of the scope, time and budget. 

Kaizen Softworks and SmartBorder’s teams together in Buffalo, NY

A prototype was created to validate with the client, keeping a customer-centric approach that any user could easily work with. Thanks to the positive feedback of the prototype designed by our UI/UX Design team, the project went into development in less than one month. 

Screenshot of SmartBorder’s core platform alongside C# logo and Angular logo

A team of two full-stack developers programmed the solution using the latest Microsoft and Angular technologies.

Icon of a spiral lock nut symbolizing speed of software development with "2x faster development" text

The LEC solution was officially launched and a new line of e-commerce business was opened to Livingston. 

A truck in a highway with a “all user migrated to the new system” text

The team expanded from 2 to 8 developers to work on the second version of the solution, which will include a customer portal for tracking purposes.

A person signing a contract
Profile SmartBorder Business Analyst - Brandon Davids
There’s two things I like the most about working with Kaizen. Firstly, the  positive attitude of the team. And secondly, I could give them 10 things to do with very little information and then they came back  and processed everything almost to perfection. I don't have to waste so much time micromanaging, looking through things ahead of schedule. If something needs to be changed, the team does it in an hour, and that’s because they’re asking the right questions. We are at a stage now where the quality far exceeds anything that I’ve ever done.
Brandon DavidsBusiness Analyst - SmartBorder

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