Filshill, the Scottish convenience wholesale distributor, has made significant transport savings by integrating Optrak’s vehicle routing software with the Swords back office system from Sanderson.
Filshill selected Optrak to achieve more accurate, efficient and consistent transport planning. A particular goal was to more precisely control vehicle loading, as sometimes planners would over or underestimate which orders could fit onto a vehicle, leading to warehouse staff repacking orders or requiring an extra vehicle to be sent out to handle the overflow.
Optrak was implemented into the Filshill operation gradually, running in parallel to manually planning during the final stage of the project before going live in order to fine-tune routing and loading rules to ensure the results were feasible and achievable.
In Filshill’s current operations, Optrak controls which orders can be allocated to each trip, boosting vehicle utilisation rates whilst staying within the limits of what can be loaded by the warehouse team. The Optrak loader – which determines the order and estimated time of loads and unloads at client sites – gives greater accuracy than previous methods; taking care of difficult calculations to decide how many vehicles are needed on any given day to meet customer service commitments.
Filshill has also used Optrak for strategic planning to assess the impact of different ‘what if’ scenarios – such as the impact of seasonal changes in demand on Filshill’s transport resources. Robin Spalding, Transport Manager at Filshill explained, “Optrak is very easy to use, it highlights what issues we need to look at and allows us to quickly weigh up different options. It is beneficial to do this before picking as once pallets have been assembled it is more time consuming to make any changes.”
Two vehicles were removed from the fleet as a direct result of increased efficiency in route planning providing operational savings of £120,000 per annum.
Increased vehicle utilisation
Filshill saw the number of orders carried by each vehicle rise by up to 11%.
Including a 3% improvement in mileage per order as well as reduced fuel cost.
Greater service delivery
On Time In Full (OTIF) delivery performance has increased. This metric plays an important role in Filshill successfully growing its customer base.
Route planning time reduction
Filshill’s route planning time fell by 80%.
“Optrak4 gives us the feel that it was designed specifically for Filshill which is a huge benefit. We also have a more standardised way of routing, as our three main planners are quite skilled in using Optrak4 and produce their results in a more consistent way. The digital map is really useful for seeing where our deliveries are and it is straightforward to move an order from one trip to another. Optrak4’s mapping capabilities mean we can see important data clearly and easily.”
“No other system matched up to Optrak4’s levels of flexibility. Our choice was vindicated as we have made significant transport savings, whilst improving our operational KPIs for utilisation and mileage. By integrating Optrak4 with Swords and planning more efficiently we have directly taken 2 vehicles off the road which represents a minimum annual saving of £120,000 for us.”