Meachers Global Logistics (formerly Oast Agencies and Meachers Transport) has built an enviable reputation up over 50 years and is regarded as one of the UKs leading independent logistics providers. Meachers 'go the extra mile' to provide their clients with first class supply chain solutions, including freight forwarding, distribution, warehousing, logistics and contract management, as well as advisory and training solutions.
Working from 5 warehouses split over 2 sites in Southampton and Derby, Meachers, execute their unique 'Complete Logistics Solutions' model, which is a framework of values and work ethos that has allowed the company to delight their clients through both excellent value delivery, and excellent customer service.
One ingredient that contributes to the success of Meachers Global Logistics is LocateIT WMS from Clydebuilt Solutions Ltd. It is fair to say that before LocateIT was introduced the warehouse was run to an acceptable standard and customers were happy, however staff at Meachers quickly realised that as their customers' expectations were growing, an investment was required to keep at the forefront of new developments and continue to offer clients the same first class service they have come to expect as standard.
Jerry Cook, IT Manager at Meachers was involved in the search for a replacement WMS, and he already had some idea as to what were the key requirements. Of particular importance, at that time, to the company was the idea of better reporting facilities including remote access to data within the warehouse (Information on Demand). Indeed, at that time there was one particular client whose complex remote requirements had been bespoke by Jerry and his team; this complex functionality needed to be offered by the prospective new system.
LocateIT was chosen as a system as it was seen as a good all rounder, and it has proved to be strong in all areas. The remote reporting facilities from ReportIT is a most valuable reporting tool and empowers Meachers customers with the ability to access stock details whenever they require, however Meachers also realise a benefit by proactively communicating by emails and send between 60 80 auto-emails to customers providing different stock balance and transaction information. This is an example of the type of value added service that helps Meachers stand out from competitors. What is more, since its induction warehouse staff are now handling considerably less calls from clients with stock enquiries. Jerry says, 'LocateIT has given us the ability to provide our customers with far more real time information. This is now seen as a key component of our customer service.'
Jerry also commented that the flexibility of the system is a real bonus to Meachers. On the face of it LocateIT seems more complex than the redundant system used before, however Jerry acknowledges that it only 'seems' so; this is down to the rich, flexible functionality and LocateIT gives them all of the 'whistles and bells' that they didn't have before.
LocateIT contains a wealth of valuable business data including Lot/Batch numbers and shelf life remaining, that was not able to be stored beforehand. Also, Meachers have set up different option parameters for each of their customers and this level of flexibility allows each customer to benefit from a unique and personalised service. The introduction of LocateIT within the warehouse, put simply, has enabled to Meachers Global Logistics to offer more, leveraging their existing warehouse staff and investment.
Summing up the installation of LocateIT, Jerry concludes, 'Having worked with the system for some time, we would really struggle without it now. I seriously believe this facility [LocateIT] has been instrumental in customer acquisition and also in retaining contracts.'
Meachers Global Logistics have big plans for the future and staff at Clydebuilt Solutions are happy to be part of their plans. The next stage of the partnership will include the installation of RF within Southampton warehousing (Meachers have RF processes in Derby), which will help warehouse efficiencies even further, enabling Meachers to offer their customer base truly real time information, in principle even integrating into their systems.