3 compelling reasons for industrial logistics to go mobile

No one likes to be held up in traffic. It’s even more frustrating when you’re a hundred metres from your destination and every one in front of you is queuing for the same thing.

When that queue is all trucks waiting to take onboard 30 tonnes of polyethylene chip each, it gets expensive. When you have a queue of ships, each waiting to take onboard 200 tonnes of ethylene, it’s really, really expensive.

So when the ship  arrives at the jetty, or the truck in the loading bay, you want it held up for as little time as possible; load or unload the right product as quickly and safely as possible.

This is really the point at which two organisations collide using a common agreed language and terms of engagement. But for all the partnership and contractual obligations, two organisations, business processes interact through two people. If we can make that smoother and safer, we all win.

In these situations there’s no possibility of directly exchanging data but we can do some really smart things with mobile technology, particularly now we have ATEX compliant, robust devices we can deploy directly to operations.

We’ve deployed Sabisu to these devices and here are three great benefits:

  • Preparation is everything
    All the relevant data can be ready to go on the mobile device for loading/unloading, so that you just have to run through a checklist.Data can be up to date, all the time, with up to date DCS or ERP data so that the right product is in the right place to go to the right customer.Users can log on to complete safety documentation or inductions ahead of arrival and this can be flagged, ensuring they’ve followed the process and are well prepared.
  • Data quality and currency
    The first thing the mobile solution does is remove double entry, which reduces overheads and ensures that data is current and high quality.A mobile device allows us to capture ‘soft’ data, such as signatures and photos.Management systems can be updated directly so you can see in real-time where shipments have gone.
  • Better process compliance
    With a paper-based system users can skip steps; with a mobile solution we can make this much harder to do, improving safety and reducing the likelihood of shipping the wrong product.We can ensure that any non-compliances are highlighted early – before they impact safety, or ripple back to impact production.Operatives can be notified of conflicting events from other systems, such as Permits to Work, plant modifications, or production interruptions, so they can react in a timely fashion.

A typical device would be the Getac z700, which is ATEX Zone 2/22 compliant, seen here running Sabisu in its mobile Android version:

Sabisu Getac Logistics>

Of course, we can go on to talk about supply/value chains, the whiplash effect, cross-partner inventory visualisation, scheduling algorithms and interdependency. But all these things depend on two people interacting effectively and efficiently to keep that queue moving.

We hope that’s interesting. As always if you have any questions or suggestions, head over to our LinkedIn group and share your thoughts.

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