Using IoT to improve your supply chain and increase customer satisfaction through real-time DIFOTQ.
Our client is a cold chain logistics company that delivers perishable goods from farm to supermarket. This makes fast delivery, undamaged product, and ensuring that goods arrive at the correct temperature are important factors for their end-customers.
Traditional methods of customer service performance measurement include it being assessed on receipt or being measured after the fact (e.g. a temperature logger that shows an alert once already received), which can make it hard to know where your supply chain failed, especially if you don’t use ‘Sign on Glass’ to record delivery times or if the temperature is reported after delivery to the customer’s dock.
This is where Rayven’s IoT Supply Chain Performance solution can help.
How IoT can improve DIFOT performance
To overcome the difficulties the cold chain logistics organization was having, we developed an IoT continuous monitoring solution that can provide real-time DIFOTQ; with en route temperature checks, as well as additional shock monitoring and time recording at point of delivery by pallet.
This provided insights into:
- Product quality – continuous data on en route storage temperature and handling, available at any time during or after the delivery
- Delivery timestamp and GPS verification
- Route deviations and delays
- Pallet management – pallets en route, by customer, by warehouse, or not heard from
Defining what data to collect is critical
In order to create this solution, we identified the data required to achieve these goals. For this solution, it included:
- CANbus truck performance data
- Real-time location, temperature and shock data
- Truck door status
- Inventory and orders information
- DC scheduled truck runs
Initial goals of the solution
The first goal was to connect sensors via 4G to the Rayven cloud to collect the right data in a consistent and reliable manner. By ensuring data quality and integrity, we would then be able to provide the following features:
- Monitoring of real-time data via a web-based and mobile system
- Device management monitoring ion one location
- Ability to define business logic so as to meet the client’s objectives
- Provide alarm and alert notifications via email or SMS messages when there was communication downtime or when a temperature excursion occurred
- Testing procedure for the application, making sure that all of the above goals are met based on the below solution architecture
Before setting the solution live, we tested four critical aspects of the solution:
The Rayven IoT platform is built with security as a top priority and our proprietary security architecture ensures that data is secure at all points of the IoT environment.
The solution includes data encryption in transit from device-to-cloud, as well as device authentication; security (Bearer) tokens; SSL, AES and RSA encryption; as well as additional device security checks done via automated polling.
Data is transmitted directly to our servers over 4G using a secure MQTT connection. To ensure the system is always working even when data isn’t sent, a heartbeat was also implemented.
Once the devices started sending data, tests we carried out to ensure that it was being received both reliably and was able to be stored in the database.
Industrial data science
The objective of exploratory data analysis was to observe trends by driver, product, and customer. This would enable the organization to:
- Examine transit duration
- Compare temperature and damage by product, driver, and customer
- Provide input to a DIFOTQ measure
- Monitor turnaround times for pallets by warehouse, driver, and customer
- Track pallet losses
We are continuing to work with the organization and are building adding to functionality to be allow them to dynamically group and track shipments, enabling them to find broader trends and track performance in different ways across their entire fleet in real-time.
Data sources used to deliver our IoT Supply Chain Performance solution
New and existing data was used to create the custom applications and business insights that come from our IoT Supply Chain Performance solution.
Key features of our IoT Supply Chain Performance solution
Never miss your targets again.
Track in real-time where your orders are, whether they are delivered on time and at the right temperature. Identify where your weaknesses are in the supply chain.
Alerts and notifications
Alert anyone in the supply chain, from suppliers, drivers, inventory managers, and customers about inventory location, delivery performance and quality management.
Device health management
Monitor in real-time the performance and location of all of the devices sending data to your solution, from location trackers to CANbus devices to ensure data will always be sending reliably.
Incident and issue management
Knowing that a vehicle is broken down or if a reefer is critical in cold-chain and can allow you to ‘leap-frog’ the failed delivery and still meet customer expectations.
Maintain a verifiable and end-to-end log of every delivery with time-stamped data of vehicle, driver, location, temperature, etc. to ensure compliance.
You can use continuous real-time monitoring of assets and compare it to historical data, enabling you to identify issues before they become failures.
Improved supply chain outcomes from our IoT Supply Chain Performance solution
Improved delivery performance
Understand where DIFOTQ failures occur and make targeted improvements. For example, are certain routes taking longer than expected?
Lower cost of operations
Reduce en route spoilage and damage by getting a better understanding of your equipment’s performance. For example, are particular assets failing to maintain temperature?
Improved customer satisfaction
By using continuously measured DIFOTQ, you can make effective continuous improvements that your customers will see and appreciate.
Enhanced asset management
Pallet loss and pilfering is a major cost to supply chain operations. Know exactly where your pallets are and exactly where and when they are lost to better manage your pallet fleet.
A well managed DIFOTQ means greater predictability for you and your customer, reducing their risk and elevating your reputation.
Food storage compliance is a key focus of both farmers and supermarket chains. With continuously monitored temperature, shock and location data, you have an auditable record of compliance.
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