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HomeBlogsBehind the scenes at Emons – Network optimization
Afbeelding voor Behind the scenes at Emons – Network optimization

An ordinary day at your desk. The telephone starts ringing, your email box is full, and you will spend the next few hours dealing with various kinds of hiccups in your supply chain while, at the same time, trying to figure out how to cut costs and keep your customers happy. And in a little corner of your mind, that you are trying so hard to ignore for the moment, there is still that last CO2 report showing less than positive figures. It sounds stressful, doesn’t it?

The way it looks, you have two options.

Option number one: do nothing and keep dealing with all these issues wasting time and energy that could be better employed to improve other important aspects of your business.

Option number two: take action. What about optimizing your logistic network?

Certainly, you heard of something called network optimization in logistics. But what exactly is it? And how does it work? If the meaning of the word optimization is quite clear, when coupled with network and logistics, things might get a bit confusing. According to the dictionary, the verb ‘optimize’ means making something as good or efficient as possible. Optimizing the network in logistics means organizing, or re-organizing, the logistics aspects of the supply chain in order to make them as efficient as possible.

At Emons, we take care of international freight network optimization. Our family company has always aimed at providing the logistics sector with the best innovations technology and digitization can provide. Our dream is to reduce on-road transport impact on the environment with our 2WIN trailers ensuring, at the same time, the best price and services to our clients.

What we do is analyse data and come up with different possibilities to integrate our transport solution and enhance companies’ performances and, ultimately, their bottom line. In other words, by implementing our fleet of double deck trailers 2WIN in your supply chain, we can help eliminate inefficiencies and save you money, CO2 emissions, and, above all, worries

But let’s take a look behind the scenes of the Emons Service Center and see how it actually works.

Set it in motion

The first thing to do if you want to optimize your freight network is to contact the Emons Service Center. That’s where everything begins.

After having made sure that your kind of goods, volumes and corridors fit with our 2WIN solution, we will organize a workshop during which you can discuss with our specialists the needs you want to satisfy and the goals you want to reach. You might be struggling with unsatisfactory road planning, searching for a way to improve your carbon footprint, just cutting your costs, or maybe you would like to re-arrange your payloads for more efficient transportation.  With all these issues, network optimization can help.

It’s all about data

Once we have defined together the challenges facing us, we will need data.

We will gather information relative to your loads such as type, dimensions, and weight as well as the number of your deliveries, your routes, and your delivery schedule. It is important for us to know as much as possible about your business to be able to improve it.

Data and tools

Critical steps in the optimization procedure are processing data and data analysis. First of all, we will prepare the data in order to consider only what is strictly relevant to our focus areas and to the goals we want to achieve. Once the data have been cleansed and prepared, we will proceed by analysing them.

All this is done by our experts with the aid of different digital tools. Let me tell you about just a couple of them.

There is, for example, Microsoft Azure which includes Azure Data Factory and Data Flow. These are cloud services where raw data can be stored and processed into serviceable business insights. Another Microsoft tool is Power BI. This software, also cloud-based, provides interactive data visualization. Like Azure, it helps turn apparently unconnected data sources into coherent, visually immersive, and interactive insights.  

Alteryx is yet another useful software to access, manipulate, analyse, and output data. It comes with different functionalities like predictive analysis and geospatial analysis.

Geospatial analysis

At the end of these steps, we will have a clear view of your supply chain.

What’s next?

Now, it is time to study optimization opportunities based on your supply chain. We will plan more efficient routes, evaluate different possible payload and weight capacity with our 2WIN trailers, and calculate prices and CO2 emissions. Once opportunities have been defined and prioritized, we can create different possible scenarios and compile an analysis report.

Route planning

Planning routes is the responsibility of the Operation department. Their job is quite challenging. Optimizing routes requires the handling of a large number of data relative to changing parameters. Traffic conditions, distance, available time slots for loadings and deliveries, estimated driving time, and the possible use of ferries or other kinds of transport modes (intermodal) for some destinations are just some of the data necessary to build efficient route planning.

Of course, there are different digital tools used by our operation team that support and allow them to work in close collaboration with customers, drivers, and fleet managers. A Transport Management System (TMS) linked to the onboard computer allows historical and real-time data to be used synergically to ensure a dynamic and efficient route planning. Such dynamism also allows us to quickly respond and solve issues as they present themselves.

The right planning and optimization of routes can help your business not only to reduce costs, save time and improve your delivery productivity but also to provide the most efficient routes in terms of fuel usage thus limiting your carbon emissions.

Costs calculation

Calculating transport costs is at least as challenging as route planning. The variables that need to be considered are many and often rapidly changing like, for example, fuel price. Our Sales department will base calculations on data such as volumes and frequencies of payloads, locations, type of goods, time slots for loading and unloading, and lead time. On-route costs like tolls, ferries or shuttles, customs, fuel consumption, number of drivers, and other indirect costs also play a significant role in the calculation.

The final computation is made with a digital calculating tool that will determine the final price based on these data. This price represents our offer, and we will discuss it together.

CO2 emissions

Another step in our optimization project is the improvement of your carbon footprint. We will determine the CO2 emissions you will generate with our 2WIN trailers based on our optimized routes and show the amount of CO2 you can save. Not to brag, but I’m sure you will be pleasantly surprised!

For this calculation, we use BigMile. It is a tool that calculates CO2 emissions based on several data such as location, fuel type and consumption, mode of transport, etc. The results of this calculation will show you the CO2 emissions specifically per trip, per pallet, and per pallet/km.

Example of CO2 calculation with BigMile

This easily gives you a clear idea of the advantages of integrating into your supply chain the 2WIN solution. These trailers can load more than standard trailers; consequently, your CO2 emissions will drop by up to a considerable 40%. One 2WIN trailer, in fact, can load 54 Euro pallets (or 40 industrial ones). This is our 3=2 principle: two 2WIN ship more than three standard trailers. In numbers: 99 Euro pallets in 2 standard trailers = 108 Euro pallets in 2 2WIN trailers.

It is quite obvious that this solution will significantly improve not only your carbon footprint but also your costs in terms of fuel, route expenses, paperwork, and in case of traveling in or out of the UK, customs fees.

One last step

After all these planning and estimations, we will organize a new meeting to present a report and discuss our results. The report will feature graphs showing your current situation and the result you can expect from the optimization and integration of our freight solution.

Report overview

Finally, we are ready to agree together on an international freight network optimization project for your company and start putting it into practice. As a start, we will show you our 2WIN trailers and give you a demonstration of how they work. Then, we will plan together a free test load to ensure that everything will work smoothly with future loadings. Finally, we are ready to start an advantageous and profitable collaboration.

Why?

Why should you embark on this adventure? What are the benefits of such a process? The main advantages of optimizing your freight network with Emons, relate to your costs and your carbon footprint. Both, we know, will positively influence your bottom line.

The first doesn’t really require an explanation, everyone knows what cutting costs mean. As for the second, it will make your company more sustainable. It will also contribute to your bottom line by increasing the satisfaction of your own customers and attracting more potential ones. Who doesn’t want to do business with a highly sustainable company?

Before concluding, I should name one more advantage of entrusting your transportation to an alternative and reliable partner like Emons Cargo. You will save yourself a lot of time and many stressful worries. You will have more time to focus on your business core competencies and activities and you will finally go back to enjoying your desk hours. It is worth the effort, don’t you think?

Schedule a call with Emons Cargo, it’s your time 2WIN!