Why You Need the GISTnet Library

GISTnet provides formal (accountable) training to address career-launch basics in international trade, cargo and forwarder operations, knowledge and business skills needed for career advancement, and government mandated safety and security topics. The GISTnet platform (GISTware) is also used to deliver training in company policies and procedures and the use of business systems.

However, no amount of prior training can prepare us for everything we will need to know to perform the complex work of cargo and trade professionals.

Historically many in our industry became successful with little or no formal training—mainly via on-the-job learning, hopefully from knowledgeable and patient supervisors who taught only good practices and correct facts. In practice, however, "OJT" too often occurs through trial and error... a powerful but very expensive way to learn. Moreover, in today's world where a single minimally-supervised person routes and documents a shipment using an automated system (and others are not double-checking documents to catch errors), doing things right the first time is imperative. "Trial and error" learning is thus more expensive and dysfunctional than ever before!

The GISTnet Library solves this problem by providing a robust continuous learning environment for today's ever more challenging work environment. Whenever one encounters something that is not understood, the GISTnet Library can be used to substitute knowledge for ignorance, often in less than a minute, just in time to avert an error and correctly perform the task at hand.

Country Guides

Forwarders operate in a complex world of origin, transit and destination country trade regulations, including general and product-specific export and import controls, documentation requirements, and cargo routing exigencies. Although training can create understanding of the general range and type of requirements associated with trade and customs clearance, the details vary considerably by country and frequently change! The GISTnet staff of experienced forwarders and customs brokers continually maintains a database of the information you need when planning, quoting and processing international shipments in the level of detail needed to avoid costly errors.


Our ignorance becomes apparent when we encounter unfamiliar terminology or the use of a term in a context that conflicts with our existing understanding. This can occur when working with shipping instructions and documents and in communication with a customer or carrier. When this happens during a phone conversation there is very little time to avoid misunderstanding and error. Use the GISTnet Glossary to understand new terminology in seconds, and then use context-based links to drill down into as much detail as you need to know in your particular operational situation. Our glossary currently explains over 6000 industry and trade terms, from common to highly specialized, with definitions written by and for forwarders and trade professionals.

Explanatory Text (Table of Contents)

Understanding terminology is necessary but rarely sufficient to comprehend the broader context in which the term is used and to perform needed tasks and services. GISTnet therefore provides extensive "what" and "how to" explanations for the countless topics throughout our subject matter scope:

Written and continually updated by highly experienced forwarders and other trade professionals, we address each topic relevant to the work of our subscribers, from very basic to expert practitioner level.

Our library is organized to facilitate self-directed learning refresh and expand upon formal training, and indeed to bypass the need for formal training in topics that have arisen in the course of daily work and OJT.


Here you will find numerous forms, industry reference documents and GISTnet-prepared "how-to" guides.

Valuable GISTnet Library Features

The GISTnet Library is quite interactive. On every page there are one or more "comment" links to communicate with our subject matter experts, to ask questions and express concerns. We will promptly respond and appreciate such feedback as part of our own continuous process improvement effort.

Under continuous development for over 20 years, the GISTnet Library today is the most comprehensive and responsive resource available anywhere to help you:

For more information, including subscription options which you will find surprisingly low cost for what you receive, contact GISTnet (staff@gistnet.com or +1.310.376.3888).