Rotek and Roshcon Logistics Services division, which forms part of state-owned electricity provider Eskom’s non-regulated businesses and is grouped under the Eskom Enterprise SOC Holding umbrella, aims to optimise its business processes and improve supply chain management for its main client Eskom, by implementing Dovetail Business Solution’s full software solution suite.

The full suite comprises third-party logistics, logistics management, transport and warehouse management software solutions.

“Owing to this upgrade, we aim to achieve a paper and debtors days reduction of about 50% within the first six months of implementation, which is set for February 2014, following the upgrade of Dovetail’s full suite of products,” Rotek and Roshcon Logistics Services Logistics Support Manager Jan Augustyn emphasises

He adds that the company aims to increase the efficiency of its truck fleet, improve its consolidations through it distribution centres, reduce fuel costs, and increase on-time delivery accuracy by automating these processes with Dovetail’s solution suite.

“The biggest advantage that this project will provide to Eskom is the ability to track and trace documents and stock regarding deliveries or PODS. The upgrade will also allow the company to download documents in real time and sort out problems quickly and efficiently with increased supply chain visibility through the use of Dovetail’s management dashboards, which enables immediate performance assessments and improvement implementations.

Preceding the upgrade, Rotek and Roshcon Logistics Services, which first partnered with Dovetail in 1998, used Dovetail’s warehouse management systems, transport management systems and e-docs for supply chain management version 6.

“We chose to upgrade our service solution with Dovetail’s full solution suite owing to the established partnership we have with the company and the full integration capabilities offered by its software solutions,” Augustyn explains.

The new solution will provide a smooth transition from manual order placing to managing the full logistics value chain electronically.  Rotek and Roshcon will be running management dashboards, which enables immediate performance assessments and improvement implementation.

State of Logistics Industry

Augustyn notes that the current state of the logistics industry in South Africa is promising.  “There are many challenges, but the ability to tackle them depends on the how companies are going to adapt. Businesses need to innovate, rethink and redesign supply chain processes to survive.”

He cites the stringent environmental requirements and the downgrading of truck loading in South Africa as examples, and notes that it will require an increase in planning and smarter working methods for companies to be successful in the South African logistics industry as it is such a competitive and high capital environment.

“Software tools can provide many benefits to businesses trying to stay competitive amid increasing regulations and costs as it helps to decrease costs and increase competitiveness,” Augustyn explains.

“South Africa is slowly moving towards a multi-modal approach within the logistics industry. Therefore, a major increase in rail investment and efficiency is required within the next five to ten years,” he predicts.

Augustyn adds that road infrastructure remains a challenge in South Africa’s logistics industry and while the trucking industry is currently performing well, a lack of adequate road infrastructure and rising maintenance costs weighs heavily on this sector.

“Government is responsible for road infrastructure with many companies working with the Department of Transport to acquire solutions and upgrades for South Africa’s roads. However, acquiring financing for new projects always remains a challenge.”