Identifying the path to operational excellence is a challenge for executives at every asset-based transportation business. For Brian Lordon, director of information technology for transportation and logistics conglomerate J.D. Irving, Limited (JDI), that challenge is further complicated by his employer’s diverse business portfolio, which spans fuel supply, van, flat bed, dry bulk, reefer, and container services, not to mention a wholly owned railroad.
JDI’s fuel supply business, RST Transport, operates in a hyper-competitive market that offers virtually no margin for error. Fuel retailers expect suppliers to provide a seamless experience, with 100% on-time delivery and cost-efficient, accurate inventory control.
In addition to RST, JDI operates a diversified trucking company – Sunbury Transport – that offers cross-border shipments between Canada and the US Sunbury operates multiple, discrete business units, and completes some 1,500 deliveries daily.
RST Transport implemented TMW.Suite transportation management software in 2010. Based on that company’s success with the solution, Lordon and JDI are now leveraging TMW.Suite to transform business processes at Sunbury, as well.
TMW.Suite is a comprehensive, highly versatile solution developed specifically for transportation businesses. The software helps drive dramatic improvements in productivity from existing resources and equipment, and speeds order management, billing and dozens of other critical functions. For fuel supply fleets, the solution also includes extensive inventory management and forecasting tools that help ensure exceptional customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Improved efficiency, operational control and competitiveness. Increased system reliability. Better data.
These and other benefits have proven TMW.Suite as the right choice for enhancing business performance at RST and Sunbury, according to Lordon. “RST basically offers a commodity service (fuel delivery), but TMW.Suite has helped us differentiate ourselves and make us ‘stickier’ to the customer,” he says. As one example, the solution has enabled RST to automate inventory management and replenishment based on electronic readings from in-ground tanks. “We’ve been able to embed ourselves in our customers’ supply chain and automate with them, so the value from an operational perspective is absolutely unique.”
The underlying data available through the software has been another key advantage. TMW.Suite is seamlessly integrated with JDI’s telematics and EDI platforms so operations professionals can monitor the business on a near real-time basis. This also helps reduce costs – particularly challenging in the fuel delivery category, where trucks normally run more empty miles. “We know where the trucks are, how much fuel they’re burning, driver behavior – all of the things necessary to run the business more effectively.”
The improved reliability of TMW.Suite, as compared to JDI’s legacy software, also has improved operations. “This software is uniquely stable,” Lordon says. “I don’t have to worry about the user community not being able to work. I don’t have to worry about the supply chain being disrupted. For these reasons alone, Trimble and TMW.Suite have helped me sleep easy.”
“We’ve needed to transform the way people in these business units do their jobs. Operating sub-optimally will not allow us to compete given the cost pressures of today’s market. So the decision to use TMW.Suite was easy.
– Brian Lordon, Director of IT, J.D. Irving