Will Big Data make the Loading Dock more Predictive?

January 7, 2014

Big Data sure is gradually taking an effect on loading docks that’s becoming evident from sensors improving servicing schedules on fleets to data being used to increase cycle times in DC’s. Big Data, thanks to technology, is all around us and it is impacting the material handling world. It all starts with data collection; an advanced software system like 4SIGHT can be utilized to gather penitent nodes of data relevant to your business. The idea here is to shift business practice from short-term goals to more predictive activity generating long term goals, a concept known as long-termism.

What are short-termers?
Most of us are guilty of being short-termers. We want it and we want it now, I mean where do you think that child screaming “I want lollipop now” actually got it from? Yes, instant gratification. We spend less time holding on to investments, less time in certain titles and more time thinking about what we want right now.
If a distribution center operated solely on instant gratification and fulfilling only current orders, the operation would surely crumble at their knees at the sight of e-commerce with its same-day shipping and rapid cycle rates.

How can Big Data and 4SIGHT help shift us from short-term to long-termism?

4SIGHT Trailer Metrics

4SIGHT Trailer Metrics

This is where these little nodes of data come into play. The data that is collected in 4SIGHT, metrics that are automatically taken from your yard productivity and dock activity are sure to raise questions about your current processes and offer insight so you can expand on productivity and reduce inefficiencies in the yard and at the loading dock.

Other forms of data collection with 4SIGHT include, dock position usage data. With this information you have the power to schedule equipment maintenance based on actual usage as opposed to a traditional time-based schedule. Dock usage data is collected and displayed, and the system automatically identifies loading docks that have reached a usage threshold. The system is then programmed to send out an email to service providers and maintenance managers. Affected dock doors can be automatically locked out for maintenance.

Strategy breeds long-termism.

Metrics and Reports to increase visibility and sustainability at the loading dock and throughout your supply chain.

Metrics and Reports to increase visibility and sustainability at the loading dock and throughout your supply chain.

The strategic practice of collecting or gathering this data from your loading dock activity means your future decisions will depend on actually historical information. This will impact factors, as mentioned your equipment usage and maintenance will depend strictly on real-life information. It does away with ‘unnecessary’ maintenance that occurs simply because time suggests it should. Therefore, this new loading dock insight saves you on labor costs and increases equipment life.

Big Data, Bigger Picture, Smarter Future Decisions.
Metrics and reports afforded to you with 4SIGHT are based on an almost unlimited number of parameters. From monitoring gate performance to optimizing efficiency with carrier arrival and departure data you can help prioritize trailer movements and tasks. Just imagine receiving tailored reports to help monitor trailer status and storage dwell time. With 4SIGHT you are acutely equipped to keep track of all your assets.
The benefits and clarity created through these new insights are sure to pave the way to a more productive, functionally sound future. A truly successful operation is one that predicts advances and changes as opposed to merely hanging on in there and reacting to sudden changes.
If you are still debating or discussing the idea of installing a warehouse management system it could be time to reach out for a free demo.

To see the benefits this software has to offer and learn the ways it can be tailored to your specific application, request your live demo today.
Or contact our 4SIGHT experts at 866.691.1377 or info@4SIGHTsolution.com

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A Smart Investment

Most users see an ROI with 4SIGHT within 12-16 months. However, some users have seen an ROI as quickly as 6-9 months.