Dimensioning, Weighing & Scanning Systems / DWS Systems Buyer's Guide


Comprehensive information to answer the questions about "how" and "why" a DWS system can benefit your operation

DWS Systems Buyer's Guide
DWS Systems Buyer's Guide

Dimensioning, Weighing & Scanning (DWS) systems are used by parcel express companies to identify, weigh and measure the goods they transport. Our DWS Buyer's Guide provides practical and educational information for both experienced and first-time buyers of DWS systems. It highlights the options available today and what must be considered when selecting and implementing new equipment.

Just like the best transport and logistics solutions, we’re packing all our expertise into one simple package.

Dimensioning, Weighing, Scanning Systems

What is a DWS System?

A DWS system can be made up of any combination of dimensioning, weighing and scanning components. Components are controlled, data is merged by software and accessories complement the system.

What does a DWS provide and why?

A DWS system is typically used as part of a revenue-recovery program to provide revenue protection to the transport provider and correct, fair invoicing to the shipper.

  • Transport providers ensure they are paid properly for the service they provide and that customer-declared weight and size data correlate to that provided by the shipper.
  • Shippers are assured that they receive correct and fair invoices for the service they pay for.
  • Both parties can be sure that the data used for invoicing is compliant with Weights and Measures regulations.

A DWS system provides weight and length, width and height of an object. It compares weight and dimensions in order for the dimensional weight to be determined. Identification data is captured in order to apply a data profile to each item processed.

Which are the typical uses of a DWS system?

DWS systems are used for automation of the measuring process, including the following:

  • Verification of customer-declared weight and size data
  • Checking data against profile in customer database
  • Compliance with Weights and Measures regulations
  • Track-and-trace of shipments
  • Checking for missing parts in a shipment

The table below details how DWS systems support these processes.

Identification (ID)


Capture item ID for correct sorting, tracking and allocation of weight & size data



Verify weight data for invoicing, load planning and quality checks



Verify measurement data for invoicing and load planning

Dimensional Weight


Divide volume by a dimensional factor* to determine an object's dimensional weight


Billable Weight


Compare dimensional weight with actual weight to determine the billable weight



Record shape data to reject an item that is too large to be sorted or that requires

a surcharge because it is un-stackable.




Take a picture of items measured for proof of correct invoicing and package


*The international Air Transport Association established a standard dimensional factor; however, companies may choose their own.

What kind of Items do DWS systems typically handle?

A DWS system can be used to identify, weigh and dimension almost any item. Any configuration can be built up such as dimensioning and identification, identification and weighing, or with all three data capture elements: dimensioning, weighing and identification.

There are combinations available to effectively process:

  • Singulated, cuboidal shaped parcels moving on a conveyor at speeds up to 3 m/s*
  • Singulated, irregular shaped parcels moving on a conveyor at speeds up to 3 m/s*
  • Parcels placed individually on a tilt tray sorter*
  • Parcels or small items in totes on a conveyor
  • Parcels or items measured while stationary
  • Pallets, containers or other large items measured while stationary