Inbound network optimisation award

Recognises those who can show highly effective results in improving, designing or optimising inbound logistics metrics.

Application criteria

The judging panel looked for innovation, the practical results achieved and how entrants had been effective in re-engineering inbound transport and logistics related to transport across any mode, packaging, consolidation, warehousing or other freight handling operations across a given network. The optimisation could relate to physical flows or operations, IT systems and network design, packaging, logistics carriers or equipment that had demonstrated improved results. The judges favoured projects that could show measurable improvement across multiple aspects of a given inbound logistics supply chain or network.


Magna Steyr – Value Add Analytics SCM

Highly critical supply chains based on long-distance JIS (just-in-sequence) suppliers require automated transport tracking capabilities. The solution implemented provides online tracking and visualisation of all trailer movements (including historical ones), and monitoring of movements into a defined area (geofencing) via both web application and mobile app. The system allows early exception management for long-distance JIS and high-volume JIT movements, creating new insight and adding value as all generated data is analysed. Thanks to the value added, the solution has been enthusiastically adopted by Magna Steyr’s  transport management operation as well as its transport service providers.


What the judges said

The judges said Magna Steyr’s use of telematics, geofencing and exception management was highly innovative and showed effective use of big data to improve understanding of the environment and drive improvements across several areas. It had led to “an impressive improvement in delivery performance”, they commented.


Deutsche Post DHL – Prototype Inbound Logistics Tender

The management of prototype logistics is extremely complex. Each newly designed vehicle is composed of multiple small items, manufactured by numerous suppliers in countries all around the world, many located in emerging markets and remote locations. This complexity magnifies as automotive manufacturers today must design and engineer beyond traditional core products using new parts that may require specialist handling to meet the growing demand for electric, autonomous and connected vehicles. For DPDHL to effectively respond to the automaker’s global RFQ, which was led by this customer’s UK entity, internal collaboration was required on an unprecedented scale. This was because the response would require input from four different business divisions – DHL Supply Chain, DHL Express, DHL Global Forwarding, and DHL Freight, along with the global DHL customer account team, an Executive Sponsor, and the customer-facing DHL Customer Solutions and Innovation (DHL CSI) team. As a first step, DPDHL therefore created a Global Steering Committee with seven global automotive sector leaders from all areas of the business. This committee assumed responsibility for submitting the best possible combined response to the customer, and unanimously selected the DHL Supply Chain UK Lead Logistics Provider (LLP) entity to make this submission.


GEFCO – Intercontinental Transport Plan

The Intercontinental Transport Plan project is a new kind of experience for GEFCO in Europe. Hundreds of millions of groupage lines operated during 18 months in Europe have been analysed in order to optimise all flows. Thanks to machine learning and the implementation of specific algorithms, the results have gone beyond the objectives. New optimised corridors have been found for more economic and greener transport thanks to the improved loading rates.


GEFCO – Crossdocking Deployment

This project aimed to help a car manufacturer optimise its crossdock network by reducing their number and improving all flows between suppliers, crossdocks and plants in different regions in Europe. The project helped create a more streamlined, efficient, flexible and faster network.


Daifuku – Daifuku/Honda Production Optimisation Project

Working during a handful of planned shutdown periods and within a busy factory environment, engineers at Honda and Daifuku were tasked with increasing daily production from 640 up to 790 units. This type of challenge was not unique in the automotive industry, but still required careful planning, committed teamwork and engineering innovation from Daifuku, who called in colleagues from Japan to develop a solution. In terms of cars rolling off the line, this meant speeding up the production process by 16 seconds – reducing the current production rate from 85 to 69 seconds. To achieve the increase in productivity, Daifuku engineers focused on three main areas of the factory: triple-decking vehicles exiting paint shop 2; creation of more workstations at various strategic locations; and changing the structure of the line to accommodate the introduction of kitting and complete units. Working together, Honda and Daifuku have shown how collaboration and problem-solving can create significant value within automotive assembly plants.


TOFAS – FCA TOFAS Layout and Materials Handling Flow Optimisation

TOFAS, the leading Turkish automotive manufacturer, controlled by its equal shareholders Fiat Chrysler and Koç Holding, manufactures a range of passenger cars and light commercial vehicles. The TOFAS Logistics Engineering team successfully completed a project, supported by local consultancy SELCO, to minimise materials handling losses in the assembly shop of the plant due to inappropriate logistics layout and inefficiencies in line feeding operations. The results of the project were threefold: firstly, using planning (Flow Planner) and optimisation (LogicNet Plus XE) software, the total distance travelled in the plant was minimised to obtain a gain of 5% in plant materials handling costs; secondly, using a materials-based multi-stop route optimisation algorithm, the routing of vehicles from warehouse to sequencing areas and assembly lines was optimised to provide a gain of 20% in materials handling costs; and thirdly, using constraint programming-based route assignment optimisation, the routing of the vehicles from sequencing areas to assembly lines was optimised to obtain a gain of 10% in materials handling costs.


Matthias Braun
Head of digitalisation and Concept Development, Volkswagen Group Logistics
Volkswagen Group

Frank Schlehuber
Director Aftermarket

Peter Weiss
Head of EMEA Supply Chain Management and Global Coordination
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

For a full list of judges click here