As a logistics partner to a wide range of B2B companies, Prime Cargo handles everything from sports equipment to packaged foods. Astro WMS® gives them the flexibility they need to accommodate an array of demands, schedules, and ERP systems while delivering customer service that’s ahead of the pack.
Prime Cargo co-ordinates third-party logistics to companies in Scandinavia and the Baltics. With a team of 17 employees (up to 27 at peak times), the company manages nearly 20,000 square meters of warehouse space and 30,000 pallet locations.
From picking and shipping to complex value added services
They provide a wide range of standard and value-added services to clients that include sporting-goods manufacturers and food companies. As a result, they’re as likely to be assembling and shipping bicycles as they are to be conducting quality control on biscuit packets. With responsibilities ranging from typical inbound, cross docking, storing, pick and pack, and co-pack activities to assembly, marking, quality control, returns management, and promotions, every Prime Cargo employee faces a variety of different tasks throughout each day.
“Our expertise and our dedicated service model are our biggest differentiators,” says Roger Hallstensen, owner and CEO. “Our staff are third-party logistics professionals who know how to find the smartest solutions for our customers, and each client is assigned a dedicated contact for all operations, so we can understand their needs thoroughly and offer “on the floor” accountability at every step.” The result, Hallstensen, says, is a more seamless, stress-free experience and a better end product.
Taming complexity. Handling multiple ERPs
In addition to the challenge of dealing with so many different products and services, Prime Cargo also has to accommodate and interface with the multiple ERPs and reporting systems their customers use, including information about batch numbers, serial numbers etc, series nr, FIFO, LIFO, and more.
Prime Cargo needed a warehouse management system capable of handling their customers’ diverse needs, connecting seamlessly to their ERP systems, and delivering the data they need in formats that support their preferred accounting and management methodologies. Astro WMS®, a scalable, modular, automated warehouse management system, offered the flexibility and extensive integration capabilities the company was looking for, plus a web interface that customers can use to track orders in real-time.
“We had a lot of experience with other systems, but we thought Astro WMS® was the best for our business, which is why we went for Consafe Logistics” Hallstensen says.
Towards zero manual entries
Prime Cargo uses Astro WMS® to manage warehouse operations. It helps Prime Cargo by seamlessly exchanging data directly with their customers’ ERP systems.
While they still conduct manual order entry for their smallest customers, the majority of their warehouse activities are registered automatically, which saves them significant amounts of time and money. Roger Hallstensen says the customer-facing web interface will be instrumental in helping Prime Cargo persuade all their customers to enter orders directly into the system.
“Instead of sending us an email, customers can enter orders directly into the web portal and then track the order there, too,” explains Hallstensen. This makes the process easier and more efficient for Prime Cargo, but it also saves time and costs for their customers.
Currently, Prime Cargo uses Astro WMS® in their main warehouse only, but plan to implement it in their smaller warehouse in the near future. When that step is complete, the company will be on track to eliminate manual entry altogether.
Communicating in real-time with full traceability
With Astro WMS®, Prime Cargo has a clear window into the warehouse so they know where customer goods are at all times. They see received orders directly and can check on the process of goods, whether the order is being worked on, or whether it’s already been completed. After every pick-and-pack activity, a message is automatically sent to the customer to let them know how many pallets were packed and what the final weight and volume of the order was. Even when the order leaves the warehouse, a transport management system connected to Astro WMS® ensures full traceability throughout the delivery process.
Astro WMS® gives Prime Cargo the ability to set and monitor a range of KPIs for the warehouse. As a real-time measure, this allows the company to track order lines per person, per hour, and automatically moving staff to where work is currently waiting.
Over the longer term, Prime Cargo is storing the numbers in Astro WMS® so they can see where peak staffing is required throughout the year. Soon, they’ll be able to use historical data to predict staffing needs more accurately and send the right number of people to the right area of the warehouse on a daily basis.
Looking to the future. With future-proof technology
While the right functionality was important to Prime Cargo, the company looked further than a checklist of features when choosing their warehouse management system. For Roger, the reputation and capabilities of the technology provider is just as important as the technology itself. He needed to know that Prime Cargo’s partner would be able to support his company now and over the long term.
Consafe Logistics gave Hallstensen confidence that Astro WMS® would continue to evolve over time to meet his company’s expanding needs, such as high warehouse density.
“We are not the biggest third-party logistics company, but we pride ourselves on being at the frontline of technology,” he says. “Our customers choose us and stay with us because we’re flexible about adapting to their needs and responsive to solving their problems. Astro WMS® helps us deliver that extra level of service in terms of visibility, integration, and ease of use to customers of every size and type.”