After more than 12 years of cooperating with Consafe Logistics, Løvenskiold Logistikk continues to find ways of improving flows using real-time information and by automating processes. They saved 15% just on picking in the last 2 years.
Norway’s major supplier of building materials, hardware and home supplies, Løvenskiold Logistikk has worked with Consafe Logistics to improve logistic flows since it first implemented Astro WMS in 2004. In a recent workshop, Tony Edmundsson, Operations manager at Løvenskiold talked about how the company makes continuous progress, constantly looking for savings and ways to make logistics more efficient.
Concentrating on changes since 2012, his presentation highlighted how to stop leaks in the logistics process.
Løvenskiold Logistikk uses Astro WMS15% savings on picking rounds
In the first quarter of 2015, the company updated to the latest version of Astro WMS, using the analysis tools to improve picking. Together with Consafe Logistics they analysed the picking system and found that it took 15 minutes just to drive around the warehouse, even without picking anything – which was extremely inefficient. There was poor planning for any changes in the range. The answer? Go back to the drawing board.
“We needed a full overview of the process to address how it could work better,” said Tony. “Using visualisation techniques in the system we looked at how to make all pallet places more efficient and performed housekeeping assignments to see what else we could make more effective.”
Dividing goods into ABCD articles and optimising routing by opening up a wall produced picking savings of 15%. A&B articles were moved into a 40% smaller area but still picking over 80% of the total goods. These changes made driving extremely short as trucks no longer have to turn around.
“The warehouse managers now have to restrict the top pickers from not over working themselves because the picking round has become so efficient,” says Tony.
Now, it’s foolproof. They know what to load and when to load with one simple scan. That’s it. It’s flexible, easy to maintain, and gives an excellent oversight.
OpView – the right decisions faster
In 2015 the company upgraded to OpView to save even more time using visualisation technology. Using OpView for decision support, Løvenskiold Logistikk could make decisions in real-time, especially in incoming goods. “If you take the warehouse floor, we right now have 945 lines waiting to be moved,” says Tony as he showed live data from the system. “We can measure the speed of movement on-screen”.
Tony also saw excellent possibilities to build more help tools into the system. “Using a serial view we can categorise goods and within 5-10 seconds we know exactly where they should be.”
Another complicated issue previously was paperwork for drivers picking up departing goods. “We always had a problem with departing good before,” says Tony. “Drivers had to fetch pieces of paper then scan them. Now, it’s foolproof. They know what to load and when to load with one simple scan. That’s it. It’s flexible, easy to maintain, and gives an excellent oversight.”
The company has made big savings through automating part of the packing process. “We previously had a bottleneck in the Building Department, where kitchens, doors, etc. were driven to a packing station. The problem lay in getting the right labels and through too much manual handling,” says Tony. “Now we have an automated function, goods are scanned once and everything is inputted automatically.”
This is part of an ongoing optimisation process. In the pipeline is how to automate the manual handling of small articles. The company will use pre-picking to move those items first.
Stop the leaks, make the money
Leakage costs money. By upgrading the system and changing from the old Unix server to windows and upgrading to the latest version of Astro WMS, Løvenskiold Logistikk now has much better control. Before, the company had to contact the Unix supplier to do simple things like add printers. Now they can stop leakage with very small projects.
The work done in 2015 has given Løvenskiold Logistikk better operative focus, where team leaders find out what’s happening on a daily basis from Astro WMS, and can make decisions on the fly.
By using a supplier with the right logistics expertise, and a WMS that is upgraded often, systems are improved and leaks plugged in an ongoing way, saving money and becoming more competitive as time goes on.
About Løvenskiold Logistikk
Løvenskiold Logistikk is part of Løvenskiold Handel, Norway’s major supplier of building materials, hardware and home supplies. The company sells goods for 1.1 billion NOK, with a daily delivery of 250 tons to 300 customers nationwide.