Onboarding at Simacan - Part 3

Onboarding step-by-step:
After you go live

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Fri | 26 May 2023 | Simacan Solutions

Digital collaboration 
in the transport sector

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

Onboarding on a collaboration platform like Simacan’s requires a different approach to implementing an internal IT application for use within just one organisation. Command Centers and logistics Control Towers orchestrate and optimise transport operations across (supply) chains. This means that chain partners need to connect their systems and reach mutual agreements about processes and data. This white paper explains exactly what this entails, and tells you how your company can prepare for a new step in the digitisation process.

3. After you go live

The day will come when the Simacan platform goes live and the first delivery drives are managed. The technical onboarding managers will watch along with you to see whether the first drives are completed properly, the data is saved correctly and all communication lines are functioning well. If there are any problems, clients can contact the Service & Support department. This is staffed 24/7, so there will always be someone available to solve high-priority disruptions, but the most important contacts after going live are the customer success managers or CSMs.

Customer success managers

At Simacan, we believe in the personal touch. Every client has their own customer success manager (CSM), who is available to answer all their questions. Clients have direct contact with one of these four trouble shooters: Jeremy, Jörgen, Jorn and Koen, who all take a proactive approach to helping our clients and making sure that they get the very best out of the Simacan platform. They fulfil a pivotal function between Simacan and the client in order to facilitate co-creation: clients are informed about new features, and their wishes are fed back to Simacan’s product developers. Success guaranteed!

Mergers and migrations

We often see that the intention to replace an existing system will trigger an organisation to take the next step towards digitalisation. Using an execution platform for transport can make the implementation of a planning package or a merger with a fellow organisation significantly easier. What's more, we see that a transition like this can even act as a trigger to start using a cloud platform like Simacan. Organisations realise that a Command Center or Control Tower with SEM enables them to use several planning schedules and FMSs alongside each other without any problem. They choose this type of execution platform precisely so that any changes to their IT landscape or organisation can be implemented as smoothly as possible in future.

The same applies to new connections resulting from a company takeover or merger. If a transport company working with Simacan takes over a competitor, they will want to integrate the latter's systems and vehicles as soon as possible; the organisations will immediately obtain insight into each other’s transport activities and profit from the benefits of synergy. If your organisation is planning to take over another organisation, be sure to discuss this with your CSM in good time. They will ensure that the onboarding process of the new part of the company goes as smoothly as possible.

Something that companies may not yet be thinking of during onboarding, but which will certainly come into play later, is migrations from the IT systems linked to the platform. If an organisation is going to use new planning software (APS) or work with other onboard computers, it is important that these new applications connect seamlessly to the platform. Simacan has an abundance of in-house expertise in this regard, and our technical onboarding managers are at the ready to ensure that your migration takes place as smoothly as possible.

Get on board

In this 3 part blog series we have shown you the steps shippers and transport companies need to take to start working with a digital collaboration platform. This involves a great deal more than a local IT implementation. Extra links must be made and the chain partners will have to reach agreement about data. The customer success managers and onboard managers play a key role in this process. Not only will they take all the worries off your hands during the onboarding process, but they will also be there when new features become available or it is necessary to connect with other systems. Digital collaboration is an important step in your organisation’s digitalisation process. Simacan is your partner throughout this process.

Verhoek Europe went live in just one month

Is it possible to opt for an advanced transport-execution platform and have all systems connected within a month? It certainly is, as Rudy Selles, an IT manager at transport company Verhoek Europe, knows from experience.

This fast-growing company has 1000 employees, 400 driving units and branches in 6 countries, and it chose Simacan because it wanted to give its clients (and its clients’ clients) real-time insight into their vehicle arrival times. During onboarding, a link must be made with the new Order Management System (OMS) developed on Thinkwise, a low-code platform that uses onboard computers in trucks. All this was done in just a few weeks. 

Simacan’s developers’ portal had a clear description of the kind of preparations we had to make in order to be able to achieve these interfaces,’ said Rudy Selles. That made it possible for us to ensure that all planning data was complete and in standardised OTM5 format. I also noticed that the collaboration with Simacan’s integration team was particularly productive; they gave us their full attention. In the beginning, the title Customer Success Manager made me smile to myself, but after getting to know Jeremy I could see that he was an enormous asset for us. Thanks to him, the project got off to a flying start.’

Last additional tips

Transport organisations that have already embarked on the digitisation process came up with the following practical and additional tips:

  • Involve everyone in your organisation! Think of a driver, to properly (!) explain a new onboard system to other drivers. Continuous education is important and necessary;
  • Inform everyone on time! Let your people know why they suddenly have four holes in the dashboard of their truck;
  • Appoint one person to keep overview (helicopter view) of the whole transition process;
  • Work with solid, reliable and innovative companies who will still be around in years to come;
  • Actively search for (external) persons and/or organisations that can help you with your process. For example, organisations that have already gone through the same process;
  • Dare to go ‘deep’; ask questions, be bold and be clear in your wishes;
  • Every now and then, take a step back; catch your breath, slow down and first inform everyone about new processes;
  • And last… but certainly not least; don’t forget to look inside your own organisation instead of always looking outwards what customers want.

- End part 3 -

More information

This 'Onboarding at Simacan' blog is part 3 of a series of 3. This blog series can be requested in its entirety and with additional information as a free white paper.

Go to 'Part 1: Digitalisation across the entire chain' >
Go to 'Part 2: Simacan’s onboarding process' >

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