The Travis Perkins Group has become the first UK company to deploy the new CAST Aurora supply chain network modelling software, from Barloworld Supply Chain Software (SCS).
The leading builders' merchant and home improvement retailer has employed Barloworld SCS's CAST software for over five years to help optimise its supply chain network, and has now upgraded to the recently launched CAST Aurora, a software package that is said to help companies achieve typical savings of 10-15% within their supply chains.
The Travis Perkins Group comprises 18 businesses including Travis Perkins, Wickes, BSS Pipeline and Heating Solutions, PTS Plumbing Trade Supplies, City Plumbing Supplies, Tile Giant and Toolstation, and its supply chain operation services the daily requirements of more than 1,850 retail and distribution sites across the UK.
"Accelerated investment in CAST Aurora allows us to maximise the benefits the software can bring to our Group and puts us at the leading edge of supply chain design in the UK," says Richard Horton, Transport Development and Planning Manager, at The Travis Perkins Group.
"Previously you had to present candidate depot locations for the software to consider, but the latest developments to CAST enable us to identify the required number of locations, their ideal position geographically and timings revolving around their opening." Richard adds.
CAST is a well-established decision support software application, which is used for supply chain modelling, strategic network design and optimisation. New CAST Aurora offers even faster and more complex modelling capabilities, as Fraser Ironside, Head of Strategic Modelling at Barloworld SCS, explains.
"Technological developments have helped to enhance the software's capabilities. Scenarios that previously may have taken hours to run through the software can now be carried out in minutes, in a single sitting" says Fraser, explaining that users can now try more scenarios, more regularly.
A key feature delivered by the new CAST Aurora, is the multi time period function, which enables companies to not only identify the ideal location for warehouses, for example, but also the ideal times to open and close warehousing facilities. It also considers seasonal peaks and falls in demand and supply. "CAST Aurora can flex capacities in the network and tactically size resources by time period" Fraser says.
"Having worked with the CAST software for over ten years, I've found Barloworld SCS to be a great company to work with," Richard Horton adds. "The company involves its customers in the development of software, with user forums providing the opportunity for suggestions, which are usually then incorporated into subsequent software releases"
Barloworld SCS has acknowledged Travis Perkins for being the first UK company to fully deploy CAST Aurora. Jim Wilson, Strategic Planning Product Manager at Barloworld SCS, presented Richard Horton with the award in June.
"We invite all Barloworld SCS users to share their feedback and experiences through an annual forum and we endeavour to incorporate their suggestions and requirements into our software" says Fraser. "Involving such leading UK companies as Travis Perkins in the development of CAST is key to its continued success as the premier supply chain decision support software."
CAST Aurora was officially launched at the Multimodal exhibition at Birmingham's NEC in April 2011, and is the latest addition to Barloworld SCS's suite of supply chain modelling and inventory optimisation software products, and can be used by third party logistics, manufacturing, consulting and retail companies to evaluate and identify different supply chain strategies, leading to significant cost savings & service level improvements.
Barloworld Supply Chain Software is a global supply chain planning company, providing expertise, tools and solutions to help companies optimise their supply chain networks, inventory and transportation.