As the UK’s largest packaging distributor Macfarlane Packaging delivers in excess of 300,000 orders each year to customers nationwide from 17 sites throughout the UK, primarily using its fleet of 90 vehicles.
The strategy to implement Paragon’s routing and scheduling software is driven by customer needs and Macfarlane’s corporate responsibility strategies to reduce environmental impact through enhancements in operational activities.
Tim Hylton, Director of Logistics, says “In responding to our customer feedback, we strive to exceed their expectations. The implementation of Paragon’s routing and scheduling software will enhance the quality, mode and frequency of communication with customers regarding their orders. Our customers can already access their accounts online to order their packaging products, view account information, packaging usage and waste reports using our portal Customer Connect. The addition of Paragon will enhance our customers’ experience by providing access to further real time data regarding the status of their delivery.”
In order to meet its objectives Macfarlane Packaging has opted for a solution including Paragon’s Route Execution software, software that enables real-time vehicle activity to be tracked automatically against the planned routes and schedules. Phase one of the installation is leading to improved delivery efficiencies by collating customers’ delivery requirements, calculating the most efficient means of delivering the goods, then tracking and logging all vehicle locations and speeds every 30 seconds thus updating the delivery schedule accordingly. Phase two, planned for early 2009, will see customers accessing online delivery status tracking and Paragon automatically sending emails or text messages to customers detailing their latest anticipated delivery time.
The operational efficiencies achievable using Paragon’s load and fleet utilisation capabilities will contribute significantly to fuel and energy savings throughout the business. Hylton continues, “We recognise the importance of making continued investments in reducing any environmental impacts our operational activities may have. The investment in Paragon’s routing and scheduling software will enable us to make significant and consistent improvements in our route planning and fleet utilisation. As a result, we anticipate significant reductions in our carbon emissions through fuel usage reductions of between 5% and 10%, which, combined with other activities, will lead to a reduction in our carbon footprint”.