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16 apr 2021

The agile fuel distributor: how to up your game

To use rigid processes is to work in a sequential order of tasks. As you work, you tick the boxes. Orders. Forecasting. Optimisation. Lifting. Delivering. Cash. In other words, business as usual.

How is that working out for you?

Or you can adopt an agile form of working, which does away with silos and integrates processes. This is at the heart of AMCS Fuel Planner, which offers rich, extended functionalities to enable agility across every area of your business and real-time optimisation across the board.

What does agility really mean?

To work with agility is to work without boundaries. This doesn’t mean that working with an agile approach lacks structure. Quite the contrary. There are still processes to follow if you’re to be successful. Think of it as a mindset, enabled by the right technologies that free you from rigid forms of working. It allows you to work with your eye on the prize rather than becoming pre-occupied with procedures. 

For some companies, working with the linear, rigid approach is operating within their comfort zone. If that’s a fair description of you, consider that you’re competing against more nimble, flexible fuel distributors. Being agile will enable your company to be pro-active rather than reactive. You’ll improve performance and become more competitive.

The path to agility: AMCS Fuel Planner

Let’s consider some of the challenges downstream fuel distributors face:

  • An ever-changing order pool and just-in-time delivery demands
  • Automatic order generation based on forecasting and depth readings
  • Constantly changing product availability
  • Fluctuating and different costs and prices at fuel depots
  • Required advanced compartment planning and loading rules and reconciliation
  • Incremental planning with pre-execution and execution in the same process

Using AMCS Fuel Planner, you can take orders as they come in without a hitch or needless order deadlines. Working in the traditional way, you’d normally lock the plans and then start optimising next steps. With AMCS Fuel Planner’s VMI Manager and forecasting, orders are automatically generated based on historical data and dips readings of the tanks. When orders come in, planning and follow-up integrates into several iterations. Everything is happening simultaneously versus laterally.

You’ll see pickups, deliveries and driving time on your screen. In the days ahead of your execution, your tankers will fill up with optimised orders. AMCS Fuel Planner’s optimisation features can swap system orders around within the total pool of orders to provide the most efficient and advantageous plan. I­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­ntelligent optimization route planning ensures the most efficient routes, saving valuable time and reducing operating costs. An advanced and thorough reporting system ensures KPI adherence to estimates, and reconciliation and data for invoicing is prepared.

That’s an example of what it means to work with agility.  The end result is a faster, smoother cash flow, which further encourages agility.

Survival of the fittest

As demands and circumstances change – and they always do – you can change seamlessly to address them. If you work the traditional way using rigid methods, then you’re adding to your workload. Is that really the best use of your time and resources? With AMCS technologies, you can reduce time spent on planning and administration by up to 75%. Think about that.

Essentially, agility is about adapting – consider evolution. Those who adapt the fastest survive. AMCS Fuel Planner reacts for you, enabling you to adapt immediately to changing situations. It’s about resiliency. Meanwhile, with rigid ways of working, you’ve got to anticipate changes and even then, those changes can disrupt your schedule.

Accuracy is everything

Without accurate data, agility is out the window. It’s accuracy that enables agile forms of working. For example, in order to forecast consumption, AMCS Fuel Planner uses dipstick measurements or sensor readings of actual tank levels, along with the historical consumption of the fuel products, to provide the data needed. Automated forecasting is how AMCS Fuel Planner optimises replenishments. Without the accuracy that the data provides, you’re back to time-consuming manual processes. This is not conducive to working with agility.

Scalable to maximise agility

AMCS Fuel Planner runs on the cloud. It’s customisable and can be configured with whatever systems you’re currently using. While we recommend our own AMCS mobile solution, you might already be using one you’re satisfied with. Not a problem.

We can integrate AMCS Fuel Planner with your solution.  The fact that it runs on the cloud means there’s little impact, if any, on your current infrastructure. It scales on demand to meet your needs. As business grows, so can your cloud usage, without any interruption to your company. No server is needed for AMCS Fuel Planner – it runs on ours. We take care of updates and security from our end.

In other words, we do the work so that nothing slows you down.

That’s an accurate way to describe AMCS Fuel Planner, as well.

 

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