DHL Express Europe
GIS Determines Better Route Planning and Minimizes Fleet Driving Distances
CA S E S T U DY
DHL has been an innovative leader in the worldwide shipping business for more than 35 years. The company is now part of Deutsche Post, the modern privatized German mail service. Deutsche Post acquired Airborne Express in 2003 and integrated it into DHL, creating a division now known as DHL Express. Today, DHL Express employs 550,000 people and manages the shipment of packages and goods in 220 countries and territories.
DHL is always on the lookout for improving how it does business. In 2002, as part of a test project, the company tackled the challenge of ...view middle of the document...
. . This has improved our competitive position in the marketplace, leading to higher package turnover rates and better margins.”
Henrik Dahlin Process Development Manager DHL Express
With this in mind, DHL looked at several solutions to help improve sorting and logistics. They chose ESRI® geographic information system (GIS) software to improve the sorting and sequencing in the loading area. Using a mainframe environment, DHL is able to allocate resources, using ArcGIS® Server software, through the Web to each terminal. This allows staff members to use ArcGIS Server to manage routes and stops, as well as edit geographic data when necessary. Using GIS as part of the overall operation, all sequencing is now done at night. “The core of this solution is the geocoding,” elaborates Dahlin. “Without it, the whole system wouldn’t work.” First, data entry staff enter the information for the next day’s deliveries into the main computer system. The information is automatically loaded into ArcGIS Server, where shipment addresses are geocoded and checked against a map to determine the zone to which each shipment belongs. The zones are created based on routes and drivers. These zones are then clustered and optimized into tours based on allocation rules and driver input. All data is accessible to staff via handheld computers and LAN radio at any time and across the whole facility.
Learn more at www.esri.com/business.
DHL Express Europe
E S R I S O F T WA R E U S E D
O T H E R S O F T WA R E U S E D
Once the tour plans are created, delivery notes and sort code files are synchronized with shipments. As a result of the new system, deliveries are now placed at the correct gates by the time drivers arrive at the terminal. Even after double-checking and loading, the drivers are out of the terminal in half the time it took before the system was implemented. Being able to optimize the number of tours per terminal helps DHL minimize its fleet and the driving distances of each vehicle. Routes can be optimized daily, which greatly reduces the effort and resources needed during peak shipment periods such as the winter holiday season. The system was up and running in a...