Just-in-time transportation, extremely narrow windows for loading and unloading, a minimum volume of operational stocks and the threat of damage at any delay — welcome to the automotive reality.
It also includes Magna Exteriors, our client, a manufacturer of plastic products for the automotive industry with plants in several cities in our home country, Czech republic.
Drawing up a weekly pick-up and drop-off schedule in their conditions is reminiscent of drawing up a timetable for the railway schedule of a smaller country. Angry passengers stomping on the platform, however, inspire much less horror than an angry car manufacturer.
Regular freight lines used by Magna Exteriors are nothing unusual. They are called the milk run — named after the train that brought milk from farmers to the dairies of the American Midwest more than a century ago. Later, the concept and principle of milk run were transferred to road transport. It has also come to be used in everyday language to denote a boring journey devoid of any excitement.
Nothing could be further from the feelings of today’s dispatchers when thinking about managing regular traffic.
Once you have a weekly pick-up and drop-off schedule, it may seem like you are done. You just have to follow it, right?. But it has a catch.
Loading and unloading connections become dramatically more complicated with the growing number of addresses and vehicles. That is why the mere construction of a graphical timetable is beyond the capabilities of many planning programs.
At the same time, the basic rule of regular transport is, as mentioned, an endless range of irregularities. Date changes. Traffic jams. Snow. Supplier outages. Accidents. Car breakdowns. Snow again.
Thus, the carefully created timetable is routinely subjected to rough practices. At that moment, one part of the dispatchers takes the fate of the company into their own hands and solves the resulting rumble with a pencil and phone, just like in the old days.
Other dispatchers have Tasha.
Tasha computes everything
We taught Tasha to deliver milk, even when it’s all frothy. You will like it when planning more complex logistics schemes. And you will immediately fall in love with it when you see how quickly and efficiently it recalculates routes in case of unpredictable changes.
We recognize that switching scheduling software is no easy feat either. That’s why we offer Tasha to customers for a trial run. In it, you model what you are planning today by hand or in another program, you gain a lot of new knowledge about the effectiveness of your plan, and then you try to change some of its parameters.