Benchmarking ready-mix logistics performance
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This article was published in the June issue of International Cement Review in 2018.
Algorithms and computer hardware have revolutionised the performance of logistics planning tools in many regions around the world. However, market conditions and business modalities may vary from region to region, so the outcome of any optimisation effort may vary too. To better understand what factors contribute to a good transport optimisation result, Inform analyses the performance of an intelligent software planning tool in two European countries.
■ by Thomas Bergmans and Dirk Schlemper, INFORM GmbH, Germany
Ready-mix, cement, aggregates and asphalt producers around the world have started to use tools that are based on operations research (OR) to plan their supply chain. OR uses mathematical and other appropriate methods to solve complex issues. The combinations of OR methods with high computer performance can significantly improve logistics processes and distribution costs.
Powered by algorithms, these tools analyse a virtually endless number of scheduling decisions in real-time and identify those that are ideal for minimising costs and maximising service quality based on the business criteria defined. The software allows operators to make incredibly-complex, time-critical decisions with ease.
Moreover, these decisions take into account a larger range of variables than the human mind is able to, resulting in better overall decisions quality. This in turn leads to increases in efficiency across the entire supply chain.
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