Paragon Software Systems’ routing and scheduling solution has been chosen by Hepworth Building Products as part of its drive to improve efficiency throughout its distribution operation.
Hepworth Building Products – a part of the Wavin Group – is using Paragon software daily to plan the delivery of high quality plumbing products from two distribution centres to customers throughout the UK. As a large operation comprising up to 75 vehicles, Hepworth’s needed a routing and scheduling solution capable of improving efficiency throughout what was previously a manually planned operation.
“In testing Paragon with data on actual deliveries we were able to clearly see the level of transport savings which could be made by adopting this sophisticated and comprehensive planning tool,” confirms divisional distribution manager, Steve Fountain.
Following the successful testing phase Paragon’s routing and scheduling solution was implemented at Hepworth’s Sheffield distribution centre, shortly followed by an implementation at its Doncaster site. “Using Paragon’s transport optimisation software we have been able to improve vehicle utilisation across the business, with plastics products achieving vehicle utilisation rates in the high 80s and clay products even better, at more than 90%,” says Fountain.
Meeting the planning challenge
Paragon marketing and business development director, Charles Nockold, emphasises how Paragon helps companies like Hepworth meet the increased planning challenges of the fast-changing building products marketplace. “Today, there are unprecedented commercial and legislative pressures on manufacturers and suppliers to the construction industry to improve delivery performance,” he says. “In response, Paragon provides a flexible yet robust routing and scheduling optimisation tool which ensures that Hepworth can manage its distribution operation in a cost-efficient manner.”
Running on a Windows platform, the Paragon routing and scheduling solution uses highly developed algorithms designed specifically to optimise road-based transport operations. It calculates the most effective delivery and collection sequences, allocates loads to appropriate vehicles and drivers and uses digital mapping to calculate road-based journey times and distances. The highly configurable software ensures that the delivery schedules are geographically efficient, vehicle and driver time is utilised as effectively as possible and routes are efficient in terms of total mileage incurred.
Fountain has also been impressed with the responsiveness of the Paragon Support team. “In developing and expanding our use of the software, the company has played a full and proactive role in ensuring we have gained the maximum return on our Paragon investment,” he says.