Austria’s leading logistics and postal services provider has developed an environmentally friendly site, which also features the very latest advancements in sorting and conveying technologies. Its partner of choice for automated parcel solutions is Vanderlande, a relationship that originated more than a decade ago.
The company’s Regional Logistic Centre Manager, Andrea Pilz-Kapfinger, has been involved from the start of the journey in 2013. She is the only manager with experience of both parcel and mail sectors of the business, for which she now has responsibility in the central area of Styria and Upper Austria. “In 2019, I was also involved in the new sorting system in our logistics centre in Graz – and this has proved to be invaluable when planning Allhaming.”
A booming market
The growth of e-commerce and the shift towards online shopping during COVID-19 have seen a 35% growth in the Austrian courier, express and parcel market (2019-21). More specifically, 184 million parcels were delivered by Austrian Post in its home market during 2021, an increase of 11% from the previous year.
“The new facility at Allhaming is at the logistic heart of the country,” explains Mrs Pilz-Kapfinger. “The challenge since 2019 has been the continuously increasing number of parcels and we needed more capacity in our network.”
The success of the Graz hub led Austrian Post to the concept of creating a “twin” facility at Allhaming, with a similar building, organisation and technical approach. The timing of the launch in August 2022 was critical, because the busy season starts in late autumn and the number of parcels starts to rise again.”
Extending the partnership
Vanderlande was selected to replicate the innovative system of Graz in Allhaming. The winning solution featured two high-capacity and flexible CROSSORTER 1200 systems that would triple the sorting capacity up to 30,500 parcels per hour.
“The most important reason to extend our partnership with Vanderlande was because we knew exactly what we would get for our money,” adds Mrs Pilz-Kapfinger. “The synergy of our spare parts stock between the two hubs was also a key issue and this gives us a huge improvement in operations.”
Moving forward together
The new system went live in September. This was made possible due to the cooperation between the two teams, who were almost identical to those involved in the Graz project.
“We had excellent support from Vanderlande, and they were very structured in terms of their milestones and deadlines,” adds Mrs Pilz-Kapfinger. “In the end, we turned on the system and everything was running well.”
Her colleague, Helmut Pernsteiner, System Technology Logistics, is responsible for maintenance and he found the handover period to be invaluable: “Since we began working with the system, we were trained to maintain the equipment every day. And now we are in full operation, we still enjoy a high level of support from Vanderlande, both here and via the 24/7 help desk.”
The feelgood package
By November the system had handled over 200,000 parcels in a day, and it was anticipated that this figure would reach more than 300,000 before the end of the year. This has also impressed Mr Pernsteiner: “Vanderlande’s sorting system is user-friendly and stable, so that we can easily control the process if any problems arise. Overall, I am very happy, because of the low noise inside the building, as well as the limited downtime and good availability.”
Mrs Pilz-Kapfinger agrees: “We can see that the structure and processes are working well, and that will help us to meet our customers’ expectations and gain their trust. Vanderlande is a good partner for Austrian Post, because it gives us a ‘feelgood’ package.
“In addition, we trust that the Allhaming logistics centre will prove to be future-proof with our expected growth over the next ten years. And I hope that we will continue to have a good working relationship with Vanderlande.”