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Planner at Meerlanden

05 Aug 2020

How to efficiently handle any kind of demand-driven planning

AMCS Intelligent Optimisation decreases planning time and significantly improves customer service

Routing and business optimization

Waste collection is a highly complex operation. It comes in all shapes and sizes: from the household waste collection in underground containers or bins to commercial waste collection with skips and roll-on/roll-off transports. “Each type of waste collection has its own specific process and planning all requiring their own planning solution, management and support”, says Maurice van den Heuvel talking from years of experience in the waste industry.

“The planning of collection routes of bins, for instance, can be static using pre-planned master routes while waste collection with underground containers or the transport of skips is planned dynamically based on smart technologies, such as intelligent optimisation and IoT (Internet of Things). End-to-end solutions enable waste collectors to combine those two kinds of planning in one IT system. With as result, routes are driven more efficiently which significantly decreases planning time and at the same time improving customer service.”

There are no industries with so many different services as waste collection, Van den Heuvel knows from experience. "For instance, household waste can be collected with bins, underground containers, with personal key service or as bulky waste. Additionally, modern technologies also provide the possibility of on-call waste collections. On the other hand, commercial waste is collected with a variety of containers like wheely bins, skips or roll-on/roll-off containers while also cranes or big bags are used."

Due to the huge variety in waste collection combined with the different kind of plannings many waste collectors experience challenges, Van den Heuvel says. “This is mainly because of unstructured communication between drivers and planners, planning of routes on paper, limited insights into the waste-collecting operation and incomplete proof of service. This can result in missed collections, errors in execution, non-optimal routes, lack of efficient resource usage and a lot of manual work for administrative processing.”

Complete insights into all operations

To tackle the challenges Van den Heuvel mentions there are many different solutions on the market. "For example, systems for planning waste collection routes and GPS systems for tracking vehicles. However, these partial solutions only solve part of the planning puzzle. Intelligent optimisation supports all kinds of waste collection and all planning types into one-and-the-same IT system both static planning with master routes and an IoT-driven dynamically planning.”

Extremely powerful algorithms calculate the most efficient planning and routes in record time, in case of dynamically planning even constantly re-planning and re-optimising routes, also during the waste collection, he explains. “This enables the most efficient waste collection with complete insights into all operations. With as result, routes are driven more efficiently while decreasing planning time and at the same time significantly improving customer service."

Intelligent optimisation software covers the entire waste collection

The smart optimisation software is designed to cover the entire planning cycle of household collecting from long-, medium-, and short-term planning to real-time based execution. With this, it is an incredibly powerful optimisation tool for any kind of planning types such as a high-density collection with bins or a demand-driven collection with underground containers with in-built sensors. Fill level data of the sensors is automatically exchanged with the centralised system which generates the most efficient next-day routes. Van den Heuvel: "This makes the planner's life so much easier. He only has to check the routes and add ad-hoc orders for immediate executing."

The smart optimisation software also can handle commercial waste collection, the transport from the municipal waste collection facility, the planning of the street cleaning and the bulky waste collection. Within the smart system, each and every of these planning types can be optimised, also while executing the orders. This results in a more efficient waste collection operation.

“The solution even provides the possibility to optimise existing routes of the waste calendar dictated periodic waste collection", he mentions. "Besides that, the smart optimisation solutions have the ability to handle every kind of planning, every planning can be integrated into our mobile solution which includes guided navigation for high-density household waste collection. Additionally, the intelligent optimisation integrates with any kind of ERP system on the market. Especially those key values make the system globally the most powerful optimisation tool in the waste industry.”

Intelligent optimisation increases efficiency and reduces operational risks

The benefits of AMCS Intelligent Optimisation are significant and, for instance, dramatically decrease of time spent on planning and administration with 25% to 75% and reduces time spent per route optimisation with 25 to 90%. Also, there are 5 to 25% fewer vehicles and/or drivers shifts needed. Furthermore, route quality, employee satisfaction, and planning flexibility are significantly increased and customer service levels strikingly improved, even close to a 100% service fulfilment rate. Additionally, the reductions of 5% to 25% in mileage and driving time leads to a major reduction in CO2 emissions.

Waste collector Twente Milieu manages the waste flows for eight affiliated municipalities and uses AMCS Intelligent Optimisation for emptying underground containers. The smart software dynamically plans collection orders and in the most efficient way optimises routes based on reports of full underground containers. This reduces the need for collection vehicles thus drivers can be deployed elsewhere. That way, AMCS’ smart optimisation software contributes simultaneously to increasing operational efficiency and to reduce operational risks. Due to the user-friendliness of the routing solution, it increases employee satisfaction and reduces staff turnover.

AMCS Platform

AMCS Intelligent Optimisation is one of the six solutions of AMCS Platform, including Enterprise Management, Intelligent Optimisation, Mobile Workforce, Vehicle Technology, Digital Engagement and AMCS Analytics. Each of the six solutions seamlessly fit like a jigsaw puzzle into each other, forming the unique end-to-end integrated SaaS solution for the waste and recycling industry.

With this, AMCS Platform drives revenue growth, margin expansion, operational efficiency and sustainability. AMCS lives up to those words with a product and development team of around 200 people, currently investing 20% of overall turnover in product development. Solutions like Intelligent Optimisation, the AMCS Customer Portal and Mobile Workforce are also integrated into existing legacy software. This way all AMCS customers benefit from the innovative software solutions of AMCS Group.