InsightsTaking (remote) control

The rise of e-commerce has challenged traditional parcel sortation processes over the past decade. There is a continuous growth in volumes and an increasing diversification of the parcel profile. Parcel companies also struggle to find skilled people to perform routine and repetitive tasks. 

The next decade will present a new challenge: having access to reliable maintenance and service support across a global depot network. Sorting centres have a growing need to be more in control over what is happening on site and predict when a failure might occur.

24/7 support

Parcel companies are looking for smarter ways to manage, maintain and optimise their one critical system and network as a whole. As same-day deliveries become commonplace, preventing downtime is crucial. On top of this, parcel companies no longer only want a hotline but proactive 24/7 support.

To improve the availability of engineers and move away from a reactive response, it is important to build an approach based on data. By gathering the right information, it is possible to shift towards a more proactive response and a predictive service strategy. 

Having a live data line between a depot and an OEM helps to improve the response times to potential issues. Data gathered from depots and hubs can be analysed at the precise time an incident occurs. Using historical data the next challenge is to predict when an incident might happen and prevent it from happening, guaranteeing higher system availability and performance. 

Irregularities not visible on site can also be spotted. In essence, incidents could be mitigated before they happen. When these observations are fed back into improvement cycles, significant enhancements can be made. 

Operational excellence

Vanderlande has developed the Operations Control Centre (OCC) concept, which facilitates live, transparent and pro-active performance monitoring by Vanderlande’s own remote personnel, as well as on-site engineers and operators. 

The OCC offers proactive off-site support, which reduces the level of reactive on-site activities. This leads to a more effective operational performance. Based on data analysis and by offering centralised control, OCC delivers a rapid response time to incidents and allows continuous improvement. 

OCC is a 24-hour support desk, from where we are able to proactively monitor our customers’ sites. Its engineers are alerted to any issues and immediately investigate to ensure that a system is operational again as soon as possible. 

Through the introduction of the OCC concept we are confident of offering a range of benefits to parcel companies. These include faster response times to incidents, prevention of issues, and the generation of useful insights. 

The OCC also offers transparency regarding the performance of an individual site, and can monitor KPIs such as sortation accuracy. By combining our operational expertise and domain knowledge, predictions are translated into actionable insights.  

‘We call you’

Vanderlande is currently piloting the OCC at four European parcel sites. We believe that it will become more of an integral part of our projects than ever and an excellent tool through which to offer future-proof support to the market.

Ultimately, we are transitioning from a ‘you call us’ to a ‘we call you’ philosophy and OCC is bridging this gap.

Joost van Montfort
Author
Joost van Montfort
Manager Data Science & Service Innovation team
Joost van Montfort
Co-author
Rob Qualm
Market Director Parcel

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