Quintiq enables e-Logistics Control to deliver 4PL activities

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INFORMATION: Free information is available from Quintiq on the subject in this story. Click here to request a copy

Overview
Founded in 1905, Ewals Cargo Care (ECC) has a long history as a third-party logistics provider.  ECC now has a turnover of 330m with operations in 14 countries, over 1,500 employees and 45 separate sites. With its multi-modal capability, ECC has a wide-range of customers for its comprehensive logistics services, from retail to heavy industries and from consumer electronics to tyre manufacturers and features some of the most famous names in the European motor transport industry.

However in 2002, Ewals took steps to ensure it was capable of targeting the then emerging  4PL market.  Making that leap required more than just a refocus of its commercial activities and the impact of this decision required a review of  its software capability and determine if it was to stand up to the demanding challenges of 4PL.

The first step Ewals took was to set up a subsidiary to ensure it could focus on the requirements of becoming a 4PL provider.  e-Logistics Control was founded in 2003 and its immediate task was to deliver a solution to Scania in the management of the flow of goods between its 14 factories in Europe and its many suppliers.

The  7,000 orders a week are required to be delivered in very tight timescales. Every day orders are received for next day collection. ECC wanted to be able to turn around the orders in a daily schedule within a maximum of two hours. These forecasted orders need to be co-ordinated into milkruns (multi drop) and a shared user-network. However, there is sometimes need to accommodate irregular orders at short notice to cope with fluctuations in demand, for example, therefore it is essential that supply chain management must be able to accommodate this. Managing these orders is the task of planners who work to optimize the demanding transportation requirements.
This placed a heavy burden on the chosen logistics provider.

The initial e-Logistics Control review of the flow of goods and the complex scale of the operation   between Scania's European factories and their suppliers dictated the use of computerised planning.
"With e-Logistics Control, we found ourselves at an unusual starting point," explained Eric Postulart, Director of ELC: "Usually we deal with an existing operating structure that needs to be computerized. However in this case , we had to start from scratch when we got the assignment in September of 2003. We had to go live with centralised management controlling the flow of goods between Scanias European factories and their suppliers on March 1, 2004."

To meet those requirements, e-Logistics Control began to look for a solution which would plan, optimize, monitor and manage the flow of goods within Europe. Eric Postulart, explained: "We compared several logistics solution packages but only Quintiq could provide what we needed: a combination of tactical and operational planning, as well as execution management and control. 

The Solution
By implementing Quintiq e-Logistics Control now has command over their transport   requirement. A crucial advantage of Quintiq was that the system can be adapted to suit individual needs in a user-friendly way.

One of the most critical things for us was that we were able to customize the front-end so our planners had an environment that was completely configured and optimized for their needs, said Eric Postulart. This would mean that they could be more productive more quickly, helping ensure we could meet the project deadlines Scania had set for us.
Using Quintiqs software, the predicted volumes are planned, in advance, as efficiently as possible in milk runs and shared-user networks. This tactical plan is held in the transport planning system. The definitive orders come in directly via Scanias webportal, which are then loaded into Quintiq, where the orders are automatically allocated into the tactical plan. With orders that do not fit into the forecast, the Quintiq system works with the planners to help deliver optimal solutions. This is achieved in a number of ways. "Deviant orders are offered separately to the planner, who then assigns them to a place in the plan", explained Eric Postulart. Alternative to a manual approach, the Quintiq system can make intelligent choices. "In this case, Quintiq provides a possible solution or takes into account the planners preferences ."

Planners at e-Logistics Control were involved with the Quintiq set-up from the beginning. In fact they built their own logistics, planning and execution  package,

Benefits
For e-Logistics Control  the clearest benefit has simply been that it has been able to create value for Scania through the use of Quintiq.  The system went live, on time and on budget on the 1st March 2004. It has enabled e-Logistics Control to effectively manage the flow of goods between Scanias suppliers across Europe and the Scania factories in the Benelux, France, Poland and Scandinavia.

Benefits flow through the tactical use of Quintiq. Planners can test scenarios to check their solutions provided by Quintiq. These enable the planners to deliver the very best solution to Scania, using their many years experience combined with the Artificial Intelligence built into Quintiqs software. Additionally, planners have complete visibility of orders and their associated characteristics and most importantly choices of execution. In this manner the spectrum of speed of service versus economic cost can be delivered through rational and structured information built uniquely in line with Scanias requirements.

The solution has had other benefits too, not least of which is as a new business development tool.  e-Logistics Control uses Quintiq to demonstrate to other manufacturers what is possible with their powerful proposition, a great benefit in the hard-edged world of logistics.

But, ultimately, all of these benefits pale against the most important factor cost management.  We are very conscious of our costs and our ability to keep them under control determines our profitability, said Eric Postulart. With Quintiqs software weve seen a reduction in costs on a scale none of us had predicted before we started on this project. This has enabled us to deliver more profit back to the business and pass cost savings back to Scania.

The Future
With the success of the project assured, the future looks bright for ELC.  Already the company is in discussions with Scania about expanding the area its manages to include more countries.  The company is also targeting other manufacturers assured it can replicate the success of the Scania work.  At the heart of this expansion lies the companys software solution, powered by Quintiq.

Pull Quotes
We are very conscious of our costs and our ability to keep them under control determines our profitability, said Eric Postulart.  With Quintiqs software weve seen a reduction in costs on a scale none of us had predicted before we started on this project, enabling us to deliver more profit back to the business and pass cost savings back to Scania.

INFORMATION: Free information is available from Quintiq on the subject in this story. Click here to request a copy

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