A new automated planning system from Transmetrics allows NileDutch to make more thorough and data-driven decisions about the management of empty containers on all levels (station/depot, regional, global) and to have better visibility on the data and business processes.
AssetMetrics software is set up in a way that every day, in just a few clicks an optimized empty containers plan is re-calculated for the entire company, 10-12 weeks ahead of time. To achieve that, a new incremental historical data set from the client’s transport management system is extracted, transformed and added to the Transmetrics model. It is then used to build highly accurate rolling demand forecasts for the next 10-12 weeks. The forecast results, along with the corrected costs, are used in the optimization module to build the global plan for empty repositioning, storage, repair and maintenance for the whole network for the next 12 weeks at the lowest possible cost. Now, to make the most optimal decisions, NileDutch can plan its empty equipment flows with AssetMetrics based on all cost inputs and other relevant business variables.
After the implementation project, NileDutch tested the system and benchmarked software suggestions to the results from dispatchers. The client confirmed that the benefits from AssetMetrics have been better than initially expected, the product is user-friendly, and that its entire team was comfortable using it daily as a guidance in decision making, so the project proved to be a success.
AssetMetrics has demonstrated significant operational improvements for NileDutch. Namely, the total costs for managing empty containers were reduced. In particular, storage costs have been impacted very positively alongside the improvements for other logistics costs. The AssetMetrics system has also helped NileDutch to reduce its container fleet size.
There were several additional benefits from using AssetMetrics software. It allowed NileDutch to get rid of manual planning in Excel (Excel still remains one of the most widely used supply chain management tools). AssetMetrics also enabled the company to have “one version of truth” since now all the relevant data from different logistics and financial systems is shown in one place. NileDutch employees from all over the world could begin collaborating through the system, making them feel more connected than ever before.
AssetMetrics provided a lot of efficiency that saved a significant amount of time in the client’s daily business operations, allowing NileDutch employees to focus on further improvements. For example, NileDutch is using data aggregation reports from AssetMetrics on a daily basis, in particular about daily stock levels with prices, which helps to control the storage costs significantly and go into details if spending is high. Besides, it helps to monitor storage facilities and calculate what is the most optimal free tier for each facility.
Transmetrics and NileDutch also identified a number of next steps to further increase the benefits of AssetMetrics solution. For example, the functionality about cabotage management, as well as local maintenance and repair strategy is in the development. Transmetrics is also planning to release a convenient management reporting dashboard, which would include cost reporting and an easy graphical interface showing how the supply chain looks like for the next 3 months (forecast for certain locations compared to supply and actual bookings).