Real Use CaseLoading Gates and Truck Loading

Initial Situation

The company ACME supplies customers throughout Europe with production material on a just-in-time basis. From the central logistics center, approximately 1,000 pallets are loaded onto container gantry cranes every day, which are then distributed throughout Europe by various forwarding agencies. In the goods issue process, the pallets are provided with an appropriate routing label on which the forwarding agency and target relation are printed. Using this label, the employees in shipping load the pallets onto the container gantry cranes. Here it is left to the experience of the employees to assign the pallets to the correct dispatch doors and load them onto the correct bridge. Errors can happen, with corresponding consequences:

Misloadings

A pallet is loaded with an incorrect relation. If the goods are incorrectly loaded within the same forwarding agency, the forwarding agency can correct the error internally and dispatch the goods with a corresponding time delay. If the goods are loaded to another forwarding agency, a corresponding manual coordination effort takes place on both sides to either retrieve and reship the goods or to re-route the goods via the forwarding agency.

The electronic shipment notification must also be adapted here. In the worst case, this error can cause a line downtime for the customer and corresponding emergency deliveries as well as additional manual effort. Considerable costs are to be expected here.

Overloading a Truck

Due to the manual process, it often happens that the weight recording, which is also carried out manually, does not run correctly. Pallets are loaded onto trucks and the pallet weight is not added correctly to the total weight.

This can lead to overloading of a container gantry crane. In the worst case, an overloading of the truck is detected during a traffic control. In this case, the shipper is responsible and will be prosecuted with substantial fines.

Project

To eliminate these two error influences, the company ACME decided to expand the existing warehouse management system (WMS) by using RFID gates at the loading gates. The visualization for the employees at the gates was realized with a Peakboard solution.

The WMS has been extended to include the “truck management” function. This in-house module offers the possibility of creating virtual gantries in the system and then assigning these gantries to specific loading gates. The loading gates are then assigned to forwarding agencies and the corresponding maximum weights per truck. This was the first part of the project and the prerequisite for controlling the physical loading process accordingly.

After completion of this project phase, RFID gates were installed at the loading gates. The simple labels in the goods issue process have been replaced by labels in which RFID tags are integrated. This means that each pallet to be loaded can be identified via RFID and can be read via RFID gates. This completed phase two of the project.

A decisive final step was now to transport the necessary information to the employee. Here, the company ACME was faced with the decision to also implement an in-house solution, which additionally ties up valuable development resources and does not belong to the core function of the WMS, or to purchase a solution on the market.

Peakboard, a decentralized solution based on the IoT principle, was the answer. Each loading gate was equipped with a monitor and the information was displayed with a Peakboard. The all-in-one solution from Peakboard, consisting of hardware and software, obtains the information directly from the upstream warehouse management system and can be flexibly adapted to the requirements at any time using the supplied Peakboard-Designer.

Through the RFID gate, bookings are made directly in the system. The connected monitor displays all relevant information, such as forwarding agency, target relation or current truck weight, in real time. Misloads are also instantly reported to the logistics employee, enabling him to react immediately and preventing faulty shipments or overloads in the first place.

One Solution, many Applications.

Peakboard combines the simplicity and flexibility of a digital signage application with the complexity of business process data and metrics.

Conclusion

The implemented solution has reduced the error rate in this process by 80%. It is assumed that the total costs of the project will have amortized in less than 18 months.

Your Advantages with Peakboard at a Glance.

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