Blackbay’s mobile data solution for facilitating asset planning

By: Blackbay  17/11/2007
Keywords: Logistics Services, Software, Supply Chain Management

How many asset managers do you have? Do you normally have the right quantity of cages, containers or pallets in the right location when you need them? Whilst there is almost always a strict focus on external costs, the costs of managing internal resources can often be blurred. If you have a high spend in purchase or lease costs for freight loading units and perhaps also a specific management overhead for the planning of these units, mobile data giving real time notification of asset location (demand) may offer a cost effective solution. If you are collecting loose freight, or freight which needs to be consolidated, you need to know how many of each asset will be required to service that freight when it arrives at your depot, whether the assets are; roll cages, pallets, sea freight containers, air freight containers (ULD's) or line haul vehicles. Because customer information at the time of booking is not truly representative of the actual volume of freight to be collected or the requirement for shipping units, any asset plan based on this information is likely to mismatch supply of load space with corresponding demand. The implications of this uncertainty are often expensive; where yesterday’s two day freight was held for today’s line haul vehicle, it may now need to be air-freighted because there is insufficient capacity in the land-based assets when today’s actual volumes are realised. Equally it may prevent customers from shipping products as they have a shortage of cages or containers into which to load their goods. Certainty in volume leads to certainty in planning By contrast, your collection drivers could scan the consignment note at the point of collection and enter freight weight, volumes, destination and service levels onto their mobile devices. That information can be relayed to their base in real time. This could give between one and ten hours improvement in the notice which the depot gets to create a live plan for asset availability. When it comes to ensuring the availability of cages for customers or depots to ship products, it may seem inefficient to order up a truck full of cages from the next depot. If you know you need cages and have sufficient lead time to call them in from a depot, which you know has a surplus, (based on previous delivery information), is it cheaper than air-freighting low service level freight across the country? Greater certainty means lower cost; the first plan should be the right plan.To download the complete paper visit

Keywords: Fieldforce Management, Logistics Services, Mobile Workforce Management, Mobility, Mobility Software, Software, Supply Chain Management,