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4PL DRIVES IMPROVEMENTS FOR ITSELF, CUSTOMERS AND CARRIERS WITH SUPERIOR VISIBILITY, AUTOMATION AND OPTIMIZATION

SmartWay Case Study

Challenge

SmartWay Logistics sought to streamline its operations by maximizing the automation of its order entering and handling. Its current TMS platform was underdeveloped and couldn’t keep up with market demands, and its limited automation capabilities resulted in SmartWay Logistics employees spending too much time on manual, repetitive processes. In addition, poor visibility and optimization capabilities were hampering efforts to deliver the most efficient, cost-effective services in the market. The company sought a new TMS that would improve automation, speed up integrations, broaden visibility and strengthen its competitive edge.

Solutions

The company chose the 3Gtms transportation management system, 3G-TM, a broad and deep, intuitive multi-mode TMS that manages and optimizes an organization’s transportation operation. Despite considering larger TMS companies with a longer presence in Europe, SmartWay Logistics chose 3Gtms because of 3G-TM’s robust functionality, the freedom to configure the system to fit its specific needs, and 3Gtms’ partnership approach.

Using sophisticated optimization algorithms, actual rate cost, along with a comprehensive set of data points, the TMS determines and delivers the best plan that can be realistically executed. It manages the full order-to-cash process in real time and within a single system. 3G-TM is the only TMS in the world powerful enough to handle the most complicated projects, yet intuitive enough to be used by all transportation professionals.

“We think a TMS should do as much as possible so our people can focus on serving the customer,” explained Edwin Schouten, 4PL business unit manager at SmartWay Logistics.

Results

Since implementing 3Gtms, SmartWay Logistics has simplified its order processing and seen big gains in efficiency and cost. “We value the ability to self-configure the TMS because we need to adjust quickly to meet our customers’ needs,” said Schouten. “The 3Gtms team truly understands our business and they are enthusiastic about helping us solve problems. They are a terrific partner.”

Automation, visibility and optimization drive cost savings for everyone
With increased automation, SmartWay Logistics employees have refocused their time and effort on larger business objectives and ensuring stellar customer service. With expanded visibility into shipments and access to intuitive portals that improve the speed and accuracy of routing requests and order management, SmartWay Logistics can more efficiently consolidate loads and avoid the manual work of pushing through orders. “We don’t have to think about inconsistencies like orders that are missing a delivery date,” said Schouten. “3G-TM is a flexible system that can cope with all of those elements.”

The power of this optimization has resulted in significant cost and time savings for the company and its customers. For one of SmartWay Logistics’ largest customers, a global corporation that produces paper-based consumer products, SmartWay Logistics has the ability to more quickly find and use local carriers to avoid last-minute trucks and transportation arrangements. These improvements have results in reduced costs for the customer.

Making life easier for carriers
Due to a capacity shortage, there is a significant effort in the European market to reduce empty mileage. To achieve this, SmartWay Logistics must configure its capacity details to fit with what carriers can accomplish. “We were very limited in this regard before 3Gtms,” noted Schouten. “Now, it’s very efficient. Our carriers can say, ‘I have 10 trucks for you on Monday or five for you on Tuesday,’ for example. We have better visibility into which ones never accept a load at certain times or which ones begin too late in the day and miss the tender. As a result, we don’t overload our carriers with offers and this makes everyone’s lives easier. It makes carriers feel positive about working with our customers.”

Faster integrations for faster ROI
The unique architecture of 3G-TM allows SmartWay Logistics customers and carriers to on-board faster and more inexpensively than ever before. The TMS’ library of templates, its infinitely scalable hub-and-spoke design, and its ability to match shipments to orders and customers for more complex pool moves result in simpler and faster set-ups.

“The ability to move any customer with limited effort onto the system is really key for us,” said Schouten. “When there’s an opportunity for business, the integration to a TMS should never be the problem. We rely on the flexibility of 3G-TM to make integrations work.”

Freedom to configure; an expert team to rely on
With the unique architecture of 3G-TM, SmartWay Logistics has the freedom to configure the system themselves – without any long-term, costly support contract from 3Gtms. SmartWay Logistics’ experienced IT team gets maximum control over workflow set-up, custom screens, business rules and more.

And when there is a problem or a question, Schouten says the 3Gtms team is knowledgeable and enthusiastic to help. “From addressing our unique needs in the European market to our questions about system capabilities, the 3Gtms team takes the time to think about our problems and come up with the best solution. It’s a very good partnership.”

Industry: Logistics Services 

Location: Throughout Europe

Customer Benefits:

  • Real-time optimization results in cost savings for 4PL and customers
  • Increased automation frees up employees to focus on customer service, not technology
  • Broader visibility into carrier network strengthens efficiencies and carrier relationships
  • Faster integrations for faster on-boarding and ROI
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Headquartered in the Netherlands, SmartWay Logistics is the 4PL brand of Van der Wal, a logistics service provider with locations throughout Europe. SmartWay Logistics specializes in the sustainable movement of shipments utilizing an array of transportation modes. Based on continuous data analysis, it devises out-of-the-box solutions to structurally improve transport efficiency and ultimately limit empty running to an absolute minimum.