Equipment Manufacturer Achieves 'Milk Run' Efficiency

Traxens smart data delivers insight for cost-effectively consolidating component deliveries and coordinating full shipments.

The Challenge

• Avoid costs associated with shipping partially full containers

• Avoid manufacturing disruption due to lack of components

• Synchronize deliveries from suppliers without adding cost

 The Solution

Traxens Smart Containers and data analysis

The Results

• Gained ability to coordinate deliveries from multiple suppliers

• Shipped only full containers

• Improved supply chain collaboration

Streamlining Component Consolidation

Consolidating goods from multiple manufacturing plants was costly and complex for an equipment manufacturer. Components were manufactured in China and Viet Nam, shipped to ports in France, Spain, and Italy, and then trucked to the primary manufacturing plant in Spain for assembly. The company's just-in-time manufacturing process required components to be delivered as they were needed—which fluctuated depending on product or seasonal demand. Ordering sufficient components to fill a container often meant that the manufacturer had to pay for parts and shipping in advance of what was needed. This reduced working capital and introduced risk. In addition, the manufacturer had to pay for storage and additional transportation charges to later move excess inventory to the factory floor.

The company wanted to consolidate collection of components from each of its suppliers using "milk runs" so that it would only pay for shipping full containers. However, synchronizing deliveries to fill a container was difficult. In some points of origination, milk runs could add days or weeks to a shipping schedule because the company lacked visibility into when each component delivery was shipped. The company turned to Traxens.

Faster Full Containers

The manufacturer's BCO introduced it to Traxens smart containers and data analysis solutions. Traxens smart solutions are attached to containers and continuously collect data throughout the container's journey. Built-in sensors and high-precision geolocation capabilities automatically send data over global cell links to Traxens for analysis and reporting, giving the BCO and shipper instant access to information about each shipment.

Now Traxens smart shipments automatically deliver departure notifications for each component shipment from a supplier. Knowing when components are shipped enables the manufacturer to consolidate components into full containers and book shipments cost-effectively.

Receiving departure notifications from each supplier also improved collaboration across the supply chain. Suppliers can optimize manufacturing efficiency and reduce delivery costs when they know exactly when components are required for container stuffing.

With Traxens, the equipment manufacturer was able to achieve its milk run strategy—shipping only full containers while ensuring that components arrived when they were needed.

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