When people speak about load planning software tools, the perception often is that the most important goal is to load in the most optimal way, to minimize transport costs. Fact is that optimal loading leads to the best distribution of your products into boxes, onto pallets, in containers and trucks, which minimizes the volume that needs to be shipped.
This is certainly not unimportant, but the advantages of good load planning software reach further:
First time right
Loading is not only done in the most optimal way but also the first time right. Time loss caused by manual inching and pinching belongs to the past. The productivity will increase massively because of this.
Transport damages (or DOAs) occur when vulnerable products are not packed carefully enough.
Advanced load planning tools can take specific product properties like “fragile” and “do not stack” into account, which minimizes the number of transport damages.
“Just in time” planning
High-end load planning software can be linked to ERP, WMS and/or TMS. This makes it possible to see how the shipment will look, right after order entry.
This information can be used to inform the logistics department and enable them to plan transport accurately. This prevents last minute transport arrangements or cancellations.
Everyone can stack!
Because of the visual 3D output from the load planning software no training or in-depth knowledge is required. Via visual instructions employees get loading instructions in a simple way. The result is more flexibility among your workforce.
Your warehouse staff can impossibly know all specific product properties and customer demands. Advanced load planning software enables you to define demands per customer or even per destination. Every customer will receive its products as wished for.
Also the above mentioned link with ERP can contribute to customer satisfaction. Because you already know how an order will be delivered in the order entry phase you can inform your customer about this. This information can be used to plan capacity and warehouse space at the customer side. You could even inform your customer about the location of specific products in the shipment. This can be relevant when you deliver full truckloads with a great variety of products.
You see that load planning software has passed the point of pure load optimization, the advantages reach further.