Globalization has stretched the supply chains of logistics to a significant extent. Inventories are covering the distance of thousands of kilometers to reach their consumers. Still, it is made sure that the customers get their orders within a week. All Kudos to the technological advancements in the supply chain. Yard Management Software is also one of those technologies that transfigure the efficiency of the supply chain to make the process quicker and smoother. Let’s discuss this Software in more detail.

What Is Yard Management Software?

The supply chain can be complex to understand when you are not already engaged in relevant industries or practices. So, let’s understand it the easy way. Yard management is the practice that deals with the management of inbound logistics and outbound actions. It consists of the vehicle, employees, dispatch, cargo, trailers, and all the other objects involved in the supply chain process. 

So, the Software that enhances the efficiency, speed, and accuracy of these actions/practices is called Yard Management Software. These Software helps to make processes more automated, eliminating the manual management of actions. 

What is the concept of Yard Management software? 

Yard manegement software

Yard Management Software presents itself as a solution to keep a managed record of different actions in the yard. The practices include tracking the truck’s inbound logistics, fleet management System, and employees working in the various departments. Further, it establishes the connection between storage and transportation to keep a complete record of employees’ logistics, fleet, and productivity.

What Are the Main Yard Management Challenges?

As discussed above, yard management practices have become complex since the supply chains have stretched their reach. The process has become overwrought to be managed on the bundle of papers. For example, the challenges defined below cost much time and monetary resources to organizations, transporters, and warehouse owners.

 1. Lack of Trailer Visibility 

Trailers are among the most critical assets for a yard. However, when the number of trailers increases, the insight into the availability of trailers is compromised. The situation leads to additional costs to the owner. At the same time, without this important insight, they are even unable to grab the deals.

2. Lack of Shipment Visibility 

Most of the time, the information like when the truck will enter the yard, either for loading or unloading, is unclear. This misinformation causes the inefficient use of space and resources in the yard. Moreover,  it even leads to disturbance in the movement of the fleet.

3. Process Misalignment 

The data and information about the yard or warehouse processes are mainly maintained by certain tools and systems (on their own). So the yard’s main stakeholders are unaware of the exact information about the available resources and workforce. This leads to the inappropriate use of resources as well as decreased efficiency of the process. The improper use of resources leads directly to increased cost, delay in operations, increased wait time, and negative impact on customer relationships.

4. Yard Jockey Inefficiency 

The inefficient use of resources is also a big reason behind the inefficiency of Yard Jockey. When the Yard Jockey doesn’t park and manage the fleets in their respective place in the yard, the chances of injury increase while safety and compliance are often compromised.

5. A Large Number of Inbound 

During the peak seasons, the inbound logistics cross the threshold of capacity. In this situation, it becomes very challenging for the yard owner to manage this exceeded capacity without affecting the safety and efficient use of other resources.

6. Vehicle Breakdown 

A vehicle breakdown is a big issue in the process of yard management. First of all, it delays the receiving or delivering the delivery of logistics. Further, it requires the support of another vehicle. The cost this breakdown will cause to the yard must also be recorded. Without a tool to record this information, proper utilization of resources is not achieved. 

7. Weather Conditions 

Weather conditions are a big determining factor for the timeliness and efficiency of the yard management process. At the same time, the inbound fleet might carry the logistics which are supposed to be stored at a particular temperature. Not recognizing these factors costs a significant loss to the yard owners. 

How Has COVID-19 Impacted Yard Management?

COVID-19 impacted every industry, irrespective of the sector and nature of operations. However, still, if we have to name the industries which were severely affected due to the pandemic, we can call nothing but tourism and logistics supply. Let’s discuss the impact of COVID-19 on yard management with some brief points-

  • First of all, the local vendors and stores were not permitted to open their physical stores. Despite the high commodity demand, the store owners were not placing orders. 
  • COVID-19 caused a massive customer shift to eCommerce and online shopping. So, businesses were adjusting their business model and process to meet customers’ demands. 
  • Local businesses, as well as the multinational commodities business, were exploring and adopting new technologies and tools to match customer needs. 
  • Social distancing forced the companies to have second thoughts regarding the yard management process. They had to ensure social distancing for their front-line workers. At the same time, the inbound logistics were also supposed to be sanitized and infection free. 

Why Are Yard Management Solutions Valuable for Businesses?

One might not observe the advantages of implementing a yard management app in the process, but it delivers a range of financial and operational flexes to the firm. For example, the 2020 State Yard Management Report interprets that installing a yard management app cut the expense by $0.21 for every mile. So, a significant amount is added to the firm’s yearly income. 

Similarly, Forbes also states that a fit yard and efficient fleet management is a gold benchmark for the organization. Following updation after the implementation of the yard management system was also observed-

  • Driver safety- 21 %
  • Fuel productiveness- 19%
  • On-time data processing-18%
  • Real-time supply chain tracking of the yard operations- 18%
  • Local regulatory guidelines agreement- 18%

How Does YMS Help Solve Logistics Problems?

We discussed various challenges that yard operators and organizations face due to various reasons. At the same time, the COVID pandemic has also made it unpredictable to know about the issues. However, instilling the yard management system and Software can cause these issues more manageable. 

The use of a Yard management solitions helps drive the following benefits to eradicate logistics management problems- 

1. Better Data Transit

The Yard Management systems manage all the data about vehicles in a way that complete insight into the timing, routes, and availability can be accessed on the palm. So, the scheduling of vehicles can be done more efficiently, which leads directly to on-time logistics delivery. 

2. Dynamic Appointment Scheduling 

Yard often faces situations where they have to cancel the inbound logistics because they don’t have accurate data about the space available in the yard. Vehicles often cancel their arrival, but due to the lack of information, this space is not filled by any other vehicle. So, the yard management system helps make appointment scheduling even more advanced. One has complete details on the trucks to arrive, trucks that will be leaving, and appointments that are canceled; thus, they can make an accurate decision. 

3. Automation of Gate Processes 

Yard management systems eliminate the chances of human error by making the process more automatic. The accuracy is increased by promoting safety for the front-line workers. The practice carries out smooth operations in the yard.

4. Electronic Documentation 

With the yard management system, physical paperwork is transformed into digital one. Mere practice makes the overall process much smoother for the stakeholders. Sharing the documents becomes easy, getting the information becomes quicker, and the chances of paper getting damaged, burned, or lost are completely eliminated. At the same time, it also prevents the spread of viruses and germs in the process. 

5. Mobile Technology 

YMS brings with it mobile technology. This implementation transfigures the way of work by the labor and workers. Drivers submit the proof of delivery as soon as they reach the destination and hand over the logistics; digital signatures save a lot of time and invoicing becomes quicker and more efficient. 

Yard Management System Optimization Opportunities 

When a process is optimized, automated, synchronized, and managed, productivity and smoothness increase automatically. YMS does exactly the same for your yard. Let’s glance into the process of carrying out these transitions-

1. Gate Control and Partial Automation

The foremost automation is experienced in gate control. The gate access can be turned self-operating. The suppliers can fill in the necessary details and data in the system to receive the ticket. This ticket can then be used to enter the gate and find the allocated spot in the dock. Moreover, once the vehicle has entered the gate, arrival information will automatically be shared with the rest of system.

2. Dock Management 

Yard management is a process where all the stakeholders get tired of phone calls and text messages. Dealing with multiple calls causes stress as well as the possibility of communication barriers. So, YMS first enables the complete scheduling of calls and messages to make the coordination more settled. Moreover, you can feed any information in system and communicate instantly about the changes to all the fleet operators. All with a few clicks.

3. Asset Management 

By bringing transparency into the internal processes of the yard, YMS makes resource utilization even more efficient. Tracking the vehicle, recording their current locations, committing the data of arrival or delivery, giving guidance, sharing the routes, checking the availability, and many other tasks become much more manageable.

4. Ble Asset Tracking  

With BlueTooth Low Energy asset tracking, the scenarios of cargo emergencies, inefficient supervisors, delayed dispatches, underuse of the invested or rented equipment, faulty vehicles, setbacks, and much more can be entertained more effectively. As the system runs on automation, the protection level is higher in the process compared to the manual one. 

5. Reporting and Analysis 

When all the data and information about the yard is available on the fingertips, using that data becomes easier. So, building the strategies and decisions based on those strategies doesn’t seem a big deal. In simple words, the extracted data from the YMS is effectively converted into the profitable data of the company. 

Classification of Yard Management Systems 

Yard management systems are divided into two types-

1. Full-Fledged YMS Software 

Full-fledged YMS software 

As the name suggests, yard management systems with advanced features and functionalities are called full-fledged YMS software. Basically, the full-fledged one carries two parts in it. The first is a dock appointment that helps with scheduling and space management. The second is yard operations control, built for logistics domains and control like manufacturing, food supplying, chemical supplying, third-party supplying, etc. 

Pros  Cons 
Comes with a complete list of features It is comparatively expensive
Carry advance capabilities The creation process is more time consuming
No requirements for regular investments
Smooth integrations with third-party solutions 
Quick development 
Creation from scratch to meet your personalized needs

2. YMS functionality integration 

YMS functionality is the designed system to integrate with the existing warehouse management systems. It enhances the capability of existing systems by adding the functionalities like dock appointments, yard asset tracking, gate control, workflow optimization, and much more. 

Pros  Cons 
Expands the capabilities of the existing system  Integration is complex
Comparatively cost-effective Functionality is limited 
Less time takingLack of customization  

Must-Have Features in A Yard Management Software

You will get the features based on your needs, preferences, and budget. However, still there are features that are core requirements for any yard management system. While getting one for you, make sure it carries the features like-

1. Gate management 

The feature makes the inbound and outbound logistics of the process more automated and quick. Instead of feeding the information manually and gates being opened and closed by a worker, the driver can feed the details to enter the gate. This self-service Software then allots truck parking spots, approves or declines appointments, automates gate opening, and verifies the information.

2. Appointment Organization

YMS takes care of all the appointments for consignors, ferrymen, and recipients. It makes sure that the fleet will inbound or deliver the logistics on the defined time. If there are chances of delay in process, appointment is edited, and all the parties are instantly informed about rescheduling. 

3. Analytics and Statistics 

Yard Management Software collects a range of data and statistics for the owners. This data plays a significant role in identifying the key performance indicators for the yard. The yard managers can quickly figure out the areas where the cost and time can be saved. 

4. Dock Control 

Yard management consists of a range of activities that have to be ensured daily. It consists of the administration of drivers, dock teams, time of the vehicle to get in for discharging or freighting, and much more. Ensuring all this manually leads to a lot of time wastage and scope for human errors. So, the yard management system makes the complete process automatic to make it errorless and quicker. 

5. Real-Time Visibility of Yard Assets 

Yard manager has to be updated about all the logistics stored in the yard. Feeding the type and quantity of logistics in a computer with a manual way might not be that efficient. Yard management systems use RFID technology that enables the managers and supervisors to have a complete freight record and their location in the yard. At the same time, it also helps to ensure that the correct freight is being loaded to the suitable trailers. 

6. Task Management 

The collaboration in the workforce of hundreds working in the yard is more efficient. Managers and supervisors can allot the tasks, take the updates, and provide guidance with a few clicks and taps. Moreover, communication between different groups becomes even more productive. One can receive the allotted tasks on the smartphone, along with the priority status of the task.

7. Alert System

Getting notified about the delays in departure and arrivals can help you to make your commitment to the client more real. Moreover, the system even provides the necessary alerts like the temperature needed to store, deadlines, etc. to help you maintain good relationships with your business partners.

What is Dynamic Yard? 

Dynamic Yard

The dynamic yard is the more updated Yard management system version, and it is the concept that transfigures the advancements experienced in a basic YMS. FourKites has developed the idea by integrating in-transit visibility with yard and dock management software. The concept enables the first end-to-end visibility across the platforms. 

Let’s discuss this technical term in simple words. Most yard management systems enable you only to manage the assets available in the yard. It can be the human resources, trailers and trucks, logistics, and machines. Dynamic yard, on the other hand, gives you the prediction about in-transit goods and trucks. So, you can make the proper arrangement and welcome further assets in the yard.

How Does Dynamic Yard Transfigure YMS Capabilities?

  • Scalability– Dynamic Yard Management makes scalability more accessible by enabling comprehensive reporting and metrics. 
  • Process automation– Dynamic Yard management makes the processes automatic and enables the supply chain to explore its maximum potential. 
  • Multi-Tenant visibility– the features allow all the supply chain stakeholders to receive updates about changes or problems. 
  • Robust Integrations– the system integrates with your existing transportation and warehouse management systems. 
  • Easy, Rapid Deployment– Deployment is straightforward and ensures that you don’t have to invest much time in the same. 
  • ETA-Enabled Process Optimization– Knowing about ETA (Estimated Time of Arrival) for in-transit goods and logistics helps you plan the unforeseen obstacles to make the process seamless.

Things to Keep in Mind While Integrating YMS

  • Assembling requirements– You should keep in mind that the system will manage the overall process of your yard. So, ensure to assemble it well with your existing systems and devices. 
  • Project planning– plan according to the pace of your requirements. Choose the features and capabilities, so you don’t have to make big changes in a year or two. 
  • Picking a credible vendor– the system’s efficiency and Software depends entirely on your vendor. Ensure to pick the credible one.

The ROI of Yard Management Solution

Software like yard management systems requires a good investment. You should consider the ROI (Return on Investment) when opting for one. After, it is all about what the firm gets by implementing the solution. So, let’s talk about the process you can consider to calculate the return on investment for your answer. 

However, the simple formula that you can use the calculate the ROI of any solution is “{(profit generated by solution – cost of solution) / cost of investment} ✖ 100”. 

Further, you should entertain the following process while calculating the ROI for your newly implemented system-  

1. Determine the cost

Any application, Software, or system never comes with a price tag printed on it. It all depends on the capabilities, features, and functionalities you wish to instill in the system. The cost will differ according to your personalized needs. To calculate the ROI, begin with determining the cost of your investment. Write down the cost of creating the system, installing it in your process, licensing, maintenance, and other periodical costs. 

2. Determine the benefits

Once you are done writing down all the costs you will have to bear, it’s time to write down the benefits. Take assistance from the following points to define the help of the solution.

Space Utilization Yard service is all about space utilization, and the returns and profit will suffer if the space is not utilized to its maximum potential. So, the yard management system ensures you utilize every square foot of your yard. The system does so by properly placing logistics and supply according to the respective sizes, nature, and cost. 
Inventory ManagementSpace utilization directs us to inventory management. The system ensures to prevent the inventory stock-outs by communicating the threshold. 

It informs about the nature of storage needed for the particular stocks. 
Equipment managementWhen the management of space and logistics has been carried out, it’s the turn of equipment management. The equipment used in the yard and warehouses are big and expensive. Any compromise with the use of such equipment costs a hefty amount to the yard management. So, the YMS keeps track of all the equipment assets available in the yard, their maintenance schedule, supervision scenario, etc. to stretch the life of these equipment.

3. Turn the data in numerics 

All the benefits you have realized in space utilization, inventory management, and equipment management should be interpreted into numeric insights. For example, the profit generated by utilizing the underused space of the yard is saved by storing the inventory in the right temperature, preventing equipment damage, etc.

4. Apply the formula

Having all the insights in your hand, you can apply the defined formula to reveal the ROI of Software for your firm.

Planning to Collaborate with A Software Development Company

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Best Yard and Dock Management Software 

When opting for a yard management system, you would like to prefer the best wandering in the market. We are hereby enlisting some of the most popular YMS that might inspire you for the features to be considered. Have a glance at the list- 

1. C3 Yard Management

C3 Yard Management

The solution is being used by more than 5,000 businesses from different industries including manufacturing, grocery, retail, parcel, and logistics across three continents. The mobile shunter app provides complete and clear instructions for various supply chain parts. Moreover, it allows the workforce to check their updated tasks with the priority level.

Automated task assigner 
Real-time visibility for yard equipment and assets 
Email support to notify about events and notifications 
Reporting datastore allows creating reports on driver productivity and gate activity
Complete tracking of out-of-service assets
Reduces the dock congestion 
Optimize the door utilization 
Eliminate the spreadsheets, manual logs, and phone logs to streamline the gate operations 
Automates the regular tasks to gain efficiency in different pieces of operations

2. PINC Yard Management 

PINC Yard Management

The popular app is designed to solve traditional challenges regarding redundant moves, delays, time-consuming yard checks, demurrage charges, excessive detention, unproductive administration, lack of communication and information, and many more. This YMS provides scalable hardware, Software to make the inventory and supply chain even smoother and more consistent. 

Complete management records regarding refrigerated trailer information, temperature, fuel, location, etc. 
Customizable reports, dashboards, and information about respective KPIs. 
Gate management system to boost smoothness and velocity of check-in and check-outs. 
Real-time location of fleets and trucks. 
The interface provides a real-time view of the yard, assets, doors, etc. 
Complete reporting over arrivals, departure, capacities, remaining space, and empties by the carrier.
Integrates with the existing systems at the yard
Real-time tracking of yard activities and assets by using RFID and GPS. 
Collaboration with carriers allows them to gain insight into inventory checks & current load status and obtain the historical records of asset activities. 

3. Manhattan Yard Management 

Manhattan Yard Management

Manhattan YMS mainly focus on efficient management of logistics and goods by enabling the plans, tracking, and auditing the goods based on their temperature characteristics, labor requirements, load configuration, shipment type, warehouse capacity, etc. 

Graphical view of the overall yard 
Employee management for allotting tasks, marking attendance, and reporting performance 
Guard check-in and check-out 
Integration with voice recognition and Material Handling Equipment (MHE)
External Parcel Integration (EPI) framework. 
Help organize load arrival to unload the trailers at the right dock door at the correct time 
Provide insights about shipment on the yards along with the associated inventory, including the yard security 

4. INFORM Yard Management 

INFORM Yard Management

The INFORM Yard Management system can work standalone as well as in the integration of existing warehouse management systems and enterprise management systems. With its features and capabilities, the YMS eliminates manual gate processing and makes the operations more automatic. 

Automatic gate management substitutes the traditional gate management
Instill advanced planning by using real-time data and analytics 
Dock door management helps keep the workforce updated about their tasks 
Complete tracking of overall activities enhances the quality of service and makes it more streamlined. 
Helps identify the damaged assets, so one doesn’t have to compromise with the safety
It avoids unnecessary assets to save the cost 

5. Highjump Yard Management 

Just like C3 YMS, this one is also used in different industries across the markets. The highlight of this system is its Drag-and-drop feature that converts the on-screen trailers to move into RF-directed work for the yard drivers. Moreover, the system uses symbols to represent information such as trailer type, disposition, status, ownership, damaged assets, and much more. 

Live tracking of trucks in different yards 
Advance notification about the arrival and departure of trucks
Dock scheduling system to guide the trailers in the right direction 
Gatehouse management allots and takes the trailers to their respective slots
It takes mere 90 days to instill the system in the operational process of the yard 
The system helps enhance employee productivity by keeping personal costs lower 
Enables the use of every meter in the yard

6. YardView Yard Management 

YardView Yard Management

To strengthen your relationship with customers, this system focuses on providing authentic and more accurate insight regarding the inventory. One always has information about the available amount of inventory which is easily accessible. Moreover, tracking the trucks and trailers on the way helps you commit to the time of delivery or arrival. 

Highly customized 
Helps avoid unnecessary delays in arrival or departure 
Easy user interface 
Icon reports regarding status and type of inventory
Mobile accessibility from different devices 
Carriers can log in to the system to have the necessary insights and descriptions of their needs

Wrapping up 

Having gone through the complete article, you must have understood that a yard management system is no longer an option but a need for yard operators. The investment amount in such a system will be far less than the loss you might have to bear due to the irresponsibilities of different parties in the supply chain. Whether your yard has space for ten trucks, hundreds, or thousands, you can customize it on your own and pay just for what is needed and used. When you entertain the ROI of such a system, you realize numerous benefits, including financial and non-financial ones. 

So, if you are also planning to engage your operational process with a Software Development Company, Emizentech can be a helping hand for you. Get in touch with our project manager, discuss your needs, and get the right solution.

Frequently Asked Question

  • What is SAP yard management?
  • SAP stands for System, Application & Product. SAP system in yard management is the practice that takes warehouse management beyond the physical wall of the yard. So, it also controls goods, inventory, and fleets that are to arrive or have been dispatched. 

  • What is Dock management? 
  • Dock management is the process of scheduling the arrival, loading, unloading, and departure of goods from the yard. Assembly of loads, an inspection of goods, and scheming the flow of inventory is also counted in the dock management.

  • How are TU movements controlled in the yard?
  • When a transport unit (TU) arrives in the yard, it has to move from one door to another or one parking space to another. Each movement creates a warehouse task (WT). Standard functions are used to create the WT, which are then used to represent the movement.

  • What structures are possible in the yard in EWM?
  • EWM refers to Extended Warehouse Management, which is termed warehouse structure. Here, the yard portrays all the sections with different warehouse and storage facilities. Each facility is tagged with a number. Storage type is the representing unit in which storage sections are defined. Each storage section consists of different storage bins.

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    With a decade of experience in eCommerce technologies and CRM solutions, Virendra has been assisting businesses across the globe to harness the capabilities of information technology by developing, maintaining, and improving clients’ IT infrastructure and applications. A leader in his own rights his teammates see him as an avid researcher and a tech evangelist. To know how the team Virendra can assist your business to adopt modern technologies to simplify business processes and enhance productivity. Let’s Talk.