Container Yard Visibility: Splice Integration and Automation Increases Throughput and Efficiencies


High volumes posed several problems that threatened STI’s competitive position and risked losing market share. STI was looking for better information management tools, and the combination of Splice's Yard Spot and SiteTrax showed immediate promise to resolve its key operational problems. By uniting Yard Spot and SiteTrax into a seamless system, STI has resolved its problems and generate additional benefits.



Challenges

 

Four separate yards covering almost 16 acres. Spiking volumes. No room for error or time to spare. This was the situation for Service Transfer, Inc. (STI), a trucking and drayage provider serving ports on the U.S. East Coast. Its facility in Chesapeake, Virginia, was bursting at the seams, and yard congestion posed the risk that business would go elsewhere.


While high volumes are a good thing, it presents several problems threatening STI’s competitive position.

  • Containers were getting lost in the stacks. The operations team had lost control of the yard as the velocity of trucks and cargo accelerated faster than their systems could manage them.

  • Drivers were frustrated by imprecise directions on where to drop and pick up containers. A container was taking too long to find, and one poorly dropped container could block access to many others.

  • Reconciling the movement of containers in and out of the yards was too slow. Slow reconciliation put STI at risk of per diem fees.

  • Trucks could not easily maneuver within the yard. In a fast-changing yard with little excess room, the truck could waste time wiggling its way through the yard.

  • Yard checks were taking too long. Yard checks using pen and paper or a laptop with a spreadsheet consumed the morning, leaving dispatch in the dark.

STI needed automated data flows to manage and control its yard check process. It was looking for better information to feed its upgraded transportation management system (TMS).



Solutions

 

Splice provided the digital infrastructure to integrate more data faster into STI’s operation by partnering with SiteTrax, a mobile solution to map container locations in near real-time, and using Yard Spot, a yard management tool powered by Splice.


Yard Spot uses Splice’s unique ability to layer multiple types and sources of data into a common operating picture. It optimizes how container yards are managed. Yard Spot combines location data from SiteTrax, GPS and ELD systems with operational data from terminal management systems and any other data source. Yard Spot displays all this information on a map in an easy to navigate and mobile-ready application.


SiteTrax by Netarus provides a simple way to capture the geolocation of your intermodal containers using a mobile phone. The ID, date, time and geolocation of the asset is pushed to any enterprise ledger including a TMS, enterprise resource planning (ERP), container management systems (CMS), or even spreadsheets. The software works with cameras to read container numbers and plot their geoposition, transmitting them to Yard Spot to map their location.



Results

 

With Splice uniting Yard Spot and SiteTrax into a seamless system, STI has been able to resolve its problems and generate additional benefits.



Decreased truck turn-times.

Drivers are able to find a container in about 10 minutes, a significant reduction from the previous 45-60 minutes. A common operating picture and accurate container locations keep trucks moving and create greater effective capacity through increased throughput.


Faster yard checks.

Yard checks are now completed in less than 1 hour when previously they took 3 hours, covering about 275 containers daily at a 98% accuracy rate.



Less administrative time and more timely data.

Each day office personnel save about 3 hours. This is equivalent to one-third of an FTE – and it is based on savings before starting automated reporting features of Yard Spot.



Common operating picture for all.

Anyone can login to see the status of containers. Plus automated reporting using integrated data to keep everyone on the same page.




Want to learn more? Contact us today and let's chat.


 

About Yard Spot powered by Splice

Yard Spot combines multiple data sources to create a single, real-time operating picture. Location data from global positioning systems (GPS) and electronic logging devices (ELD); operational data from enterprise applications and supply chain partners; and image data from fixed and mobile cameras merge in Yard Spot to make finding equipment quick and simple. Yard Spot helps reduce turn-times, increase yard productivity, prioritize movements, and avoid detention fees.


Yard Spot stacks data from internal and external sources to create a common operating picture. Yard Spot harmonizes and homogenizes data, translating different formats, languages and protocols for interoperability. Yard Spot can integrate countless data sources, including enterprise applications like ERPs, SCMs, MRPs, to form a single source of truth and situational awareness.



About SiteTrax by Netarus

Powered by Netarus, the SiteTrax™ platform provides an easy way to capture the geolocation of your intermodal containers and share this information within your organization. With a click of a button on virtually any mobile device or our latest virtual gate solution, your business can capture your container assets in real-time. Once an asset is captured, the ID of the asset is automatically pushed into any public, enterprise or distributed database including YMS and Terminal Operating Systems (TOS).


How does it work? Install SiteTrax onto any camera, cell phone or HoistCam camera system. Once installed, take a picture or video of your asset and SiteTrax handles the rest. The ID, date, time and geolocation of the asset is pushed to any enterprise ledger including ERP, TMS or Container Management Systems (CMS) - yes, even just spreadsheets.


 

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