Overcome main supply chain and logistics industry pain points
When thinking of reducing the costs of transporting goods and warehousing, optimizing transportation and warehousing activities are often the first concepts in our minds. There is however a little but vital element linking these two key concepts, and it is often overlooked or underestimated.
Delays in the supply chain industry often lead to financial losses, missed opportunities, and customer dissatisfaction. Generally, delays are caused by traffic or poor routing, but rather due to inefficient load processes and poor yard management software or its lack.
The supply chain and logistics industry has its pain points, which are successfully tackled with the help of business digitalization instruments. One such tool is yard management software.
Yard management solutions are designed to enhance transportation management systems. Yard management software enables one to oversee the movement of trucks and manage it in the yard of the facility, distribution center, or warehouse.
Its efficiency lies in the possibility to track the real-time data, process and manage it, and transfer it to the employees, who can move trucks efficiently.
Yard management automation tools are aimed at delivering more value, decreasing operational costs by automatizing core processes, and increasing the efficiency of each yard.
To understand, which challenges and difficulties are often faced by the employees responsible for the yard management let us quickly run over the yard management process.
Key yard management tasks
The yard manager should collect the time and date of appointment, receive the truck and drivers details to ensure security, notify the dock management team that the driver has arrived, and provide the driver with the instructions and details about the dock, where one be uploaded or unloaded and make sure that the trailer will be loaded to the parking, where the driver will hook it up. Finally, a manager should check out the driver and truck.
Thus, the key three tasks are:
- yard management processes – organization of the yard trucks movement
- dock management – scheduling uploading and unloading operations
- tracking the movement of the assets
It sounds pretty simple and no problems should arise. However, when you multiply the number of yard trucks daily arriving, you may imagine the chaos that will happen without the proper yard management system.
Let us sum up the main pain points and tackle problems that are usually faced by people responsible for yard operations management.
Pain points and problems caused by inefficient yard management
Not only the very process is complex, but it also needs constant and exact coordination. Since, each mistake or pitfall can cause delays, interrupt daily workflow, and slow down the whole supply chain.
Pain points and problems caused by inefficient yard management
- Lack of proper documentation;
- No instruments to track the driver’s details;
- Lack of real-time visibility of expected vehicles;
- No visibility in prioritization of cross-dock vehicles;
- Inability to track the current position of the vehicle in the warehouse;
- No real-time visibility in tracking the in-time and out time, operation start time/end time
- No possibility of identifying whether the car has arrived for uploading or unloading, or both;
- Difficulties with tracking the movement of the trucks from dock to dock, from dock to parking, and from parking to parking.
Thus, business digitalization presupposes the implementation of the YMS – yard management system – a software solution designed for planning and tracking daily yard operations, monitoring, and getting real-time information for more efficient decision-making.
It is a part of an ERP (enterprise resource planning) system, which is supposed to provide full enterprise visibility, inventory management, and control over operations. It can be either part of your existing system, a dock or warehouse management system add-on, a standalone custom solution, a homegrown system, etc.
Why your business needs a yard management solution?
For sure, each business is different, however, exist some common challenges faced in the process of yard management. Based on our previous experience in building ERP(enterprise resource planning) software for logistics companies and after communication with our clients, we have distinguished the common challenges faced while dealing with yard management technology.
We will tackle the most common ones and explain how an efficient custom yard management system can help to cope with them.
Lack of visibility
When a truck arrives, an operator has no information about the driver, the vehicle itself, The purpose of arriving as well as the driver does not have any information, about where one should move. It causes serious inefficiencies and delays.
Inefficient use of the yard
Because of the lack of shipment visibility, and since operators do not know the purpose of the arrival, the yard space may be used inefficiently. As a result, gate congestion and demurrage/detention charges skyrocket.
Reactive operations due to mismanagement
Transportation and yard processes are usually managed by different parties, thus exists a lack of tools, which can dynamically update the info and coordinate all operations.
As a result, stakeholders are unable to monitor the real-time data, and it leads to inefficient distribution of the resources. They get delays, high costs, and low satisfaction rates.
Inefficient use of yard jockey
The inefficiency of yard operations results in the inability to control security and compliance. It results in additional charges, poor planning, and wasted experts.
Poor gate management system
Check-in and check-out processes are too time-consuming and less efficient with the possibility of human errors. Moreover, it also causes high labor costs, poor truck management, and a lack of effective communication.
Transportation, warehouse, or yard processes are managed via separate yards and docking systems or by tools that are not continually updated or are not even digitally maintained, resulting in reactive actions.
This means the stakeholders don’t know what’s really happening which leads to inefficient storage and labor and increases costs.
Inefficiencies in the transport system can result in longer delays and more costly and traumatic waiting experiences which affect the customer’s relationship.
Yard management solution from the developer’s perspective
A yard management solution is architected to track the movement of the vehicles on the yard and serves as a connection between the transportation and storage phase, boosting the control level and providing significant capabilities for productivity.
YMS integration options
The best way to maximize your YMS value is to connect your software to another software you’re using. This integration guarantees reliable information exchange which leads to increased accuracy and reduced manual input.
YMS is possible to integrate with such software as ERP & WMS. Typically YMS vendors offer an Open API that enables data exchange. The incoming data in WMS or ERP could contain the order details and it could also share the ETAs or vehicle details. The WMS data may include inventory updates, as well as appointment information.
In-and-out tracking features implementation
- Vehicle registration(number, type, weight, etc)
- Driver details registration
- Automated capturing of the vehicle, using the license plate reader
- Installation of the visualization screen to track the movement of the vehicles – expected, delays and available
- Creation of an AI-powered notification system for a driver to upload and unload the vehicle or the creation of the screens demonstrating instructions
Main approaches to yard management system implementation
While Implementing the YMS you need to remember that it’s not only about software, but smooth implementation depends on a lot of different hardware such as mobile devices, sensors, scanners, etc.
- Implementation of the yard management system as a part of the warehouse management system, however, it will not provide the needed degree of visibility and customization;
- Tools tailored to pending needs or other words – you may go for a custom narrowly tailored software and integrate it with your existing ERP;
- Standalone yard management software solution that covers all the aspects of the yard management;
- Custom build YMS system from an advanced software development company that enables maximized efficiency and meets your specific requirements and needs.
Optimization opportunities we offer
We offer custom software development for automation, synchronization and real-time visibility. Individually designed solutions help to manage yards, warehouse management systems, and supply chain management solutions enabling to boost business productivity and increase customer satisfaction rates.
- Centralized appointment management systems for quick and efficient dock management
- YMS gate management systems allow to reduce human errors, automate the check-in and check-out process
- Increased visibility in asset tracking. Real-time visibility guarantees accuracy and security
- YMS provides the capability to make your data more useful and enables informed and data-driven decision making
Problems you will solve with custom yard management systems
- Provide relevant information about the yard;
- Number of loaded trailers;
- Allows saving the operation time; without the need to search dozens of data
- Reduces costs in the yard by decreasing feel times;
- Eliminate time-wasting phone calls and email;
- Gate automation
- Eliminating slow communication;
- Integration of the weight bridge for automatical capturing of the vehicle weight during its in and out;
- automated dock or parking lot assignment
- automated; prioritization based on vehicle fulfillment criteria, client’s demand, and age of the vehicle.
What you will get after building custom yard management solution as a part of ERP
- complete visibility of the yard;
- measured operations efficiency and metrics across the yard based on the data captured;
- dashboards allow to track critical operations and make data-driven decisions and take quick measures
ability to track KPI after the implementation of the yard management system;
- ability to decrease the turnaround for trucks and reduce demurrage charges;
- increase the overall operational efficiency.
To sum up
The yard serves as a central channel between the warehouse and transportation. Why efficient yard management is important? Because it affects the operational costs, efficiency of operations, and profitability of the whole supply chain.
Since the logistics and supply chain industry is also actively adopting technologies in daily operations, yard management software has also become very popular. It presents a bunch of programs and services designed for monitoring transportation, manufacturing facility yard and storage facilities, or distribution center.
Yard management software greatly improves the visibility of the yard, allows automation of the check-in and check-out procedures, identifies the driver and vehicle and automated the locating process when it comes to uploading or unloading. It enables to establish the efficient flow between inbound and outbound assets.
When you consider investing in yard management software, you need to understand the effect it has on your business. Yard management software integration is the best way to maximize your efficiency, enable secure and quick information exchange, allow increased accurate tracking, and reduced manual input.