This week, Clint Reiser, director of supply chain research at ARC Advisory Group, had the opportunity of speaking with Bob LaMere, CIO of East Coast Warehouse, about the company’s recent yard management system upgrade and the benefits obtained by the company. He just wrote an interesting article about his findings on Logistics Viewpoints blog. I have shared parts of the article below.
“East Coast Warehouse & Distribution (ECW) is an integrated temperature-controlled logistics provider to the food and beverage industry. The company’s primary site is at Port Elizabeth, NJ. This site is both large and complex. It is 60 acres in size, including about 14.5 acres for customs and 1.5 million square feet of refrigerated facility space. Furthermore, it spans six lots, three main buildings, and holds 1,100 containers and a large number of chassis. The services supported by the site include warehousing, customs examinations, drayage operations, TL, and LTL transportation services.”
“Once the yard management system was up and running it provided immediate visibility into the status of assets and yard operations. The system included a visual top-down representation of the yard with containers marked green, yellow, or red, according to how long the asset had been in its current location. This provided management with a quick overview of the assets on site and insight into what assets would be subject to container per diem charges, allowing them to reduce these unnecessary costs. The YMS also provided insight into the location of specific containers, reducing the time required by drayage drivers and switchers to locate the desired container for movement. And PINC was correct in its guaranteed reduction in the need for switchers, as ECW reduced its number of switchers from 10 down to 7. Finally, there were substantial customer service benefits. ECW customers are provided with password access to the YMS web portal where they can view the status of their containers, from pick-up to leaving the terminal. As an additional benefit, the visibility provided through the YMS serves as a valuable sales tool to ECW as they present the companies’ capabilities to prospective customers. ECW was able to achieve project payback in under 9 months.”