Chain optimisation and chain cooperation evident in more effective logistics processes

Tue | 26 Jan 2021 | Simacan Solutions

Chain optimisation and chain cooperation evident in more effective logistics processes

Chain optimisation and cooperation are becoming increasingly important. If organisations want to operate successfully in a chain, optimisation of their own internal processes, but also the processes in the entire chain, are important success factors. Based on clear objectives, the activities will have to operate as efficiently as possible, reducing waste to a minimum. This is no different in the world of transport and logistics. Simacan believes in open systems where qualitative data is made available to the chain in a controlled manner.

In addition to its vision on open systems, Simacan also focuses on open collaborations, which is reflected in our transition paths. Chain cooperation can significantly improve performance in the logistics sector and is badly needed to meet increasingly strict requirements set by governments, shippers, consumers and society. Only by working together operationally in the chain and taking the entire process into consideration it is possible to operate sustainably as a chain. But in practice, that is easier said than done: vision and trust are required for this to succeed. Entrepreneurs in the logistics sector who take chain cooperation seriously must above all have the trust and the will to cooperate closely and to share company data in the chain. 

Chain optimisation and chain cooperation necessary

In recent years, chain optimisation and cooperation have become increasingly necessary in the transport and logistics sector. In the current market, they are seen as the most effective ways to realise improvements in the areas of cost and risk reduction and value creation, among others. Chain cooperation can lead to more effective logistics processes - that is not only the general view, but also what we see happening in practice.

In the last 10 years, the logistics sector has put a lot of effort into achieving the best possible coordination between the supplier and the recipient of the goods in so-called vertical cooperation. In the meantime, the necessary improvements have been made. The next step in logistical efficiency is horizontal cooperation between shippers. 

In horizontal cooperation, non-competitive parties generally sit down at the table to work together. Parties can make use of each other's network or sales force. Horizontal cooperation, between producers, service providers or retailers, often offers additional opportunities to improve performance, reduce costs or operate more sustainably.

Steps to successful chain cooperation

The main objective of chain cooperation is to operate much more efficiently, not as a company, but as a chain. Part of this is bundling flows of goods. Whereas many logistics service providers assumed years ago that combining forces would come at the expense of their own income, this viewpoint now seems to have changed.

In 4 steps to successful chain cooperation:
  1. First of all, a change in culture and reciprocity is needed. In the chain, people must learn to cooperate with each other in a different way, a bond of trust must be created and there must be a greater focus on common interests. Cooperation between companies is very important in a circular economy, because they are more dependent on each other and can benefit more from streamlining their activities. Collaboration only succeeds when parties commit to each other in a meaningful process that takes into account each other's interests;
  2. Every organisation with ambitions in chain cooperation will have to take a good look at its position in the chain, in order to be able to cooperate effectively with partners: which companies already fall within its own network, how can the objective be clarified and how can a long-term vision be created for the joint chain? One can think of bundling transport flows, or combining warehouses, but also of cooperating in the area of personnel;
  3. It is good to understand with which organisations information can be shared, but also to have insight into each other's business processes. In this way, it is possible to anticipate each other's situation and achieve the desired efficiency. To minimise the chance of failure and opportunistic behaviour, partners must build in special safeguards. Two types of safeguards can be distinguished: those based on formal agreements (contracts) and those based on trust. Transparency provides hard evidence, which will increase or decrease the trust of parties;
  4. There will be more opportunity for innovation through knowledge exchange and transparency: 'openness' or 'willingness to share information'. Transparency enables the exchange of information and is vital to the overall functioning of a circular value chain. Transparency and the sharing of information develops trust, because it shows that partners have nothing to hide and one party does not know more about an issue than the other. If the sharing of data and cooperation gets going, this will increase the flexibility in the chain, among other things. Guaranteeing data quality is then of paramount importance.
Providing real-time and better insight into logistics processes

Logistics managers are faced with the task of making complex supply chains transparent, in real time and more predictable. This can be done with the help of chain cooperation, by digitising and integrating all processes, within the own organisation and with chain partners: connecting internal systems and the systems of customers and suppliers.

Logistical information must be available in real-time at all times and everywhere in order to deliver goods to the customer faster and in the right way. As a result, supply chains are becoming increasingly flexible, traceable 24/7 and self-managing. The aim is to reduce costs and make supply chains transparent and more predictable in real time.

Supply chain digitalisation

Over the past ten years, the transport and logistics sector has built up a great deal of expertise in the development of planning tools, platforms and control towers / command centers. Sharing data and jointly improving processes by linking applications lead, as we see in practice, to great joint benefits. Technology such as artificial intelligence (AI) is emerging, as well as platforms that provide further digitalisation of the supply chain. 

By using the Simacan platform, you can easily cooperate digitally with your business partners and external parties. You can simply connect each other's planning, transport and fleet management systems. The solutions offered by Simacan do not have complicated configuration files, messy control panels or unclear options and settings. Within each Simacan solution, you will find clear interfaces, clear graphs and overviews, and effective data filters.

Simacan platform for supply chain optimisation and collaboration

Simacan supports all parties involved in the supply chain with real-time technology, that is our role in delivering a 5-star delivery experience. Our added value here is the combination of geodata and technology, routing and real-time data, which we can deploy extremely well strategically in our clients' transport chains. High volumes of data and event-driven datasets are at the heart of our data processing. Everything is geared towards data transparency and data exchange solutions, supported by our ISO certification.

Are you curious what the Simacan platform can do for you in terms of chain optimisation and chain cooperation? Please contact us for further information or a demo without any obligations.