Fleet News

Parcelforce tests new scheduling system

ONE of the UK's largest parcel carriers is to test a vehicle scheduling solution as part of a multi-million pound investment aimed at slashing fleet running costs and increasing vehicle efficiency. Parcelforce is the first parcel carrier in Europe to implement the Planner system from Sidewinder Europe.

The system, which was initially to be used to evaluate the scheduling requirements for Parcelforce's fleet of 500 trucks, will now also be used to assess the best use of resources for its fleet of Ford Transits, Mercedes-Benz Sprinters and Vitos. Planner allows fleets to improve vehicle efficiency and improve running costs by taking into account variables such as cost, quality and urgency and using theses factors to schedule deliveries.

It also means that schedules become more flexible and can be adapted to meet changing customer requirements. Bill Kiernan, Parcelforce Worldwide's TMS operations manager, said the system would benefit the company in assessing major new contracts. 'We will be able to assess the operational and financial implications of different scenarios at the touch of a button,' he said.

The system will eventually be used as part of a total fleet management solution that uses in-vehicle mobile data communications, GPS satellite tracking and onboard computer technology to allow real-time scheduling to meet changing conditions.

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